MAKING THE TRANSITION INTO THE BROOKLINE EARLY EDUCATION PROGRAM
Adjustment to new situations is an important and exciting part of growth and development. Each child adjusts to new situations differently. An important task for children and parents is separation. Both parents and children need to know that the classroom is a secure and safe place for them. Please be prepared to spend some time accompanying your child through the initial routines and arrival time activities. For some children this may mean 10 minutes on the first day only; for others it may mean a longer period of time for a few days. Unless a special plan is made with the teacher, we ask that all parents say good-bye before circle time starts.
THINGS THE TEACHER WILL DO TO PROMOTE A POSITIVE ADJUSTMENT
- Teachers will greet each child by name every day and introduce him/her to the routine and the classroom environment in a nurturing, reassuring manner.
- Teachers will help children get involved in activities. Sometimes diversion helps a child forget about good-byes and begin his/her day.
- Teachers will work on developing a special relationship with your child in an effort to get to know your child’s strengths, needs, interests and preferences.
- Teachers will put up photographs of each child and his/her family. Sometimes if a child misses someone, looking at a photo can be the next best thing to that person being there. If possible, please send in a family photo when your child enters the program.
- If your child is having a difficult transition, the teacher will work with you to develop an appropriate separation plan.
THINGS PARENTS CAN DO TO PROMOTE A POSITIVE ADJUSTMENT
Remember, each child is different. Some children separate easily from their parents or caregivers, others have greater difficulty. Some children separate and seem to adjust very well initially but, after several weeks when the novelty has worn off, they exhibit a delayed reaction and may get upset in the mornings. All these reactions are typical and the teachers are prepared to help children and their parents make this adjustment.
- Bring your child to the program on time feeling confident about this new experience.
- A child can sense when a parent is uncertain about leaving and this can make the child anxious. Once a good-bye is said, follow through by leaving. (Often when a child is upset, within 10 minutes of the parent leaving, he or she is calm and playing.)
- Prompt arrival and pick up is very important. Part of your child’s sense of security while in school is his/her awareness of the daily routine. If for any reason you cannot adhere to the schedule, please discuss this with the teacher.
- If you feel that having your child bring a transitional object to school (e.g. stuffed animal) will help ease separation, please discuss this with the teacher.