Back-to-School: Transitioning to Kindergarten
It’s official, my daughter is no longer a preschooler! After shedding a few tears at her preschool graduation, I’ve spent the first half of the summer preparing myself and will spend these last few weeks preparing her for transitioning to Kindergarten in September. She no longer takes naps during the daytime, so that part doesn’t worry me, but what about lunch time? How will she be without her ‘Baby’ doll all day long? Arianna is very outgoing, but will she be okay making new friends? I did a bit of research and spoke to family, friends and colleagues who have been though this same phase (including the other Family Room bloggers) to get advice. Here’s what I’ve discovered.
Tips for Transitioning to Kindergarten
Lunch Time. Will she have enough time to eat lunch? The unanimous answer was yes, which reassured me a little bit! Having only 30 minutes and no assistance for opening containers, sticking straws in juice boxes or packing everything back up will be a huge change from her preschool center. She started using a Yumbox at the end of this past school year, so her lunch can all be in the same container to save a bit of time. This will be a lifesaver for the shortened Kindergarten lunches.
Separation. Her doll has been attached to her hip since she was a toddler. Will she be okay leaving it home every day? We’ve started having the conversations about ‘Baby’ and how Kindergarten is only for kids. I’ve suggested that Baby can drive in the car with us to drop her off and pick her up, and Arianna thinks that is a great idea! Let’s see how that goes.
After-school Care. I work full-time during the day so I have to put Arianna in an after-school program. Will that be too long of a day for her? Unanimous answer: No! She was generally in preschool from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. so she is used to 9 hour school days. I’m hoping the extra hour that she’ll be in the after-school program will give her time to unwind, have a snack and think about her day. Fingers crossed that when I do pick her up she isn’t exhausted and tells me she did ‘nothing’ all day. If the answer is still ‘nothing’, we just might have to resort to the happy/sad jar idea.
We haven’t talked about Kindergarten too much, but my daughter is very excited and I don’t want that bit of excitement to turn into nerves, so we’ve just been focusing on enjoying our summer together! We’ve recently started picking out ‘Back-to-School’ clothes and supplies as an indirect way of reminding her that she’ll be starting at a new school in a few weeks. I’ve been thinking of what fun first day of school traditions I’ll start with her this year. One thing is for sure, I’ll definitely have my camera ready!
If you have any other tips for me as we prepare to make this transition to Kindergarten, I’d love to hear them.