First Day of School
Preparing Kids for Kindergarten
The first day of kindergarten is one of the most important milestones in our lives. Your child is about to embark on a lifelong journey of learning and individual growth. As you look ahead to 2032 (the year they’re expected to graduate from high school), what are some of the important lessons they, and you, might learn along the way?
As an Admission Director at The York School, parents often ask me for advice to ensure a smooth transition. While kindergarten is a new experience and the first step in a child’s formal education journey, I have found these tips to be extremely helpful to new students and parents:
Be a good friend to all
Everyday, our children meet and play with new friends. How can we teach our children to be accepting and to be good friends to all? It’s actually quite easy. Let them be themselves, and as a parent, be a positive role model. In my experience, they are naturally inquisitive, and eager to make friends. For some, this will happen quite quickly, while others may take longer. Regardless, their intention to be a good friend is natural, and it is important to encourage our children to be kind and inclusive to all.
Meet other parents
As a parent, I have found tremendous benefits in meeting other like-minded parents. Schools usually have a parent association group, which is helpful for gaining insight into the school community, and for engaging with other parents, whether to schedule a play date for your children, or to organise a social event for parents.
Establish a routine
Many professionals claim that routine is the key to their success. Establishing a routine for our children is a great first step to ensuring a smooth transition. A routine can be as simple as establishing a to-do list in the morning or evening before bedtime, which prepares them for their school day. For many children, the afternoon nap is eliminated for the first time when they start kindergarten, so phasing this out before school begins is ideal.
It’s easy to get bogged down in the details. The reality is that our lives are very busy. When your child comes home from school, be sure to spend time to get to know how his or her day went. We all just want to be heard, so take the time to listen. Most kids will give you very short answers, so it’s up to us to investigate and to ask questions in such a way that shows an understanding of what your child’s day was like.
Supporting your child can be a lot of work, and a big responsibility. Remember to have fun, knowing that tomorrow is a new day!
PRAVEEN MURUGANANDAN is the Director of Admission & Advancement at The York School. For more information about admission to The York School, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit WWW.YORKSCHOOL.COM