When your child first joins school – the first few days can be quite confusing for her. You can make things much easier for her – if you know how to help your child settle in school.
Your child is suddenly placed in a strange place among strange people. And for the first time in her life she is away from her parents for several hours at a stretch.
She does not know what she is doing there or what will happen next. And it can be a time of anxiety for her.
It also a new schedule full of activities that is probably rather exhausting for her at first.
A child who is scared, tired and confused is unlikely to be able to learn what is being taught in school. So one of the first things the parents of child who is starting school should do – is help their child settle in school.
If you are the parent of a child who is starting school – here is what you can do
- Set a routine for daily activities When everything else is changing in your child’s life all of sudden – a routine can be very reassuring. When a routine is followed – the child knows what to expect next and being able to predict – reduces some of the anxiety in her life. The routine must not be very hectic in the first few days of school. Make sure there is enough time for your child to sleep.
- When your child comes home Ask her about her day at school. Ask her whom she met, what she did and how she felt. Take an active interest in what she has learnt – no matter how small or insignificant the knowledge that she has acquired may seem to you.
- Connect school learning to everyday life. What your child learns in school may seem meaningless to her until you show what she can do with what she is learning. Showing her that being able to write will mean that she can write letters and shopping lists will make her learn writing with far more enthusiasm and interest. A child who finds everything that she is taught in school meaningful and useful – will concentrate much more in class and learn much faster
- Create a quiet corner for study Starting school is a huge milestone in the life of a child and the milestone must be marked by introducing something special into her life. The best thing to introduce at this stage is a corner where there is a table and chair that she will use only for school work. This will make school and school work seem special and very attractive to her
- Do not schedule too many extra-curricular activities – Extra curricular activities are wonderful for children but it must be remembered that they involve learning and discipline. A child who has just started spending several hours in school learning and following instructions – is unlikely to be able to cope with extra curricular activities. In the initial days – allow children enough down time to relax and be themselves and do what they want when they get back from school. This downtime will ensure that she focuses and learns faster when she is in school
Show your child that school can be fun.