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Daycare Drop-Off: Tips for the Morning Child Care Routine

Daycare Drop-Off: Tips for the Morning Child Care Routine

The morning routine – getting children up and out of the house – can be challenging enough, but what do you do when you’re faced with a difficult daycare drop-off on top of it all? Tough drop-offs happen to everyone, but armed with some of the parenting tips below, you may be able to avoid a few of the common drop-off pitfalls.

Daycare: Tips for Smoother Morning Drop-Offs

AiliKeep in mind that they are in a place that they are loved and cared for as they are at home, and that the experiences and friendships they build with their classmates is something really special.

RachelAllow enough time to not be in a rush. The whole day is better when you didn’t fly in to the center, peel your crying child off of you, and rush out the door hoping that’s not your kid crying (knowing it is). When you get there early, you can linger a bit. Let your munchkin show you something she’s excited about in the classroom, chat with the teacher, or just allow yourself a breath. Of course there will be days that all the planning in the world won’t get you there early…but you can try.

EmilyFor my kids, having a good-bye routine made it easier.  It can be as easy as a hug and high-five, but something that you consistently do every day.

HeatherI struggled a lot with drop-off. My daughter did pretty well for a long time. We would hang out, chat with the teachers, and things usually went pretty smoothly. Once she turned 3 it went downhill. There was crying and clinging to my leg. Each time I would get a report half an hour later that she had calmed down quickly and was having a great day…but it was a tough way to go to work. Her teacher suggested making drop off very quick – and it worked. I walked her in the door, waved to her favorite teacher, turned around and walked out. No lingering in the classroom led to no tears and no leg-clinging. Be flexible, and ask the teachers for help – they’ve usually seen it all!

LauraSpend some extra time in the classroom letting your little one get comfortable. Also, have a discussion with the teachers ahead of time so you’re on the same page about your approach to drop-off. For example, some days you may be able to spend that extra few minutes until your child is immersed in something in the classroom, but have a signal for those days when you can’t stick around and need the teacher to swoop in to help.

Media Mom: Be brave and confident for your child, even if you’re a mess inside. That means be willing to leave your crying child in the arms of a loving teacher while you wave and smile and blow kisses. Save your breakdown for when you’re out of sight. If you can’t show your child that you’re confident, it will be harder for him/her to adjust.

What are your best tips for making daycare drop-off time smoother? Share with us in the comments area below.

*This post was originally published in Sept 2015.

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  1. Veronica Marks November 30, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    I’m considering switching from an afternoon shift to a morning shift, but am worried about the morning routine! Thank you for the tip to be brave and confident for her. She really does look to me for knowing how to act in new situations. Hopefully my attitude toward dropping her off will help!

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      Lindsay December 1, 2015 at 9:51 am

      You’re welcome. So glad you found Media Mom’s tip helpful! You’ll be great.

  2. Kate Branham December 14, 2015 at 10:43 am

    I like how you said, “Be flexible, and ask the teachers for help – they’ve usually seen it all”. I think that asking the teachers for help and ideas is great! My son was struggling to go to daycare in the mornings and so I asked the teacher if she had any ideas. She did and I tried them out. It worked and now drop offs are easy.

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    JuliaCS November 10, 2016 at 1:15 pm

    Hello Lindsay, do you know where I can leave a comment/ recommendation about our teacher? I read parents left their comments about teachers but I do not see any comments about our teacher and I thought to leave a comment for her. Our location is Chandler. Many thanks,

  4. Kathleen Cornell December 16, 2016 at 2:39 pm

    As a childcare provider I find it a whole lot easier if the parent drops of their child, gives him or her a hug and says goodbye. The longer the parent lingers around the harder it is for the parent and the child to say goodbye. I have a few parents that do this and the transition from home to daycare goes a whole lot smother than the ones that want to sit and chat with me or help their child with every piece of clothing they have. Its best to get in the practice of sign your child in, give a hug or high-five, and say goodbye. (I know its easier said than done being a parent, but it makes the day so much smoother for both of you)

  5. Jamessmith May 4, 2017 at 3:02 am

    Thanks for Tips for Smoother Morning Drop-Offs.

  6. Tee C October 7, 2018 at 4:21 pm

    As a preschool teacher, I would like to give my feedback. I’ve noticed that lingering around makes the child more upset. I usually greet the parent, and take the child’s hand and talk to them, for example “Oh Anna what a pretty shirt! Let’s go see what our friends are doing.” At that time, the parent leaves. Less tears, more smiles. Works for all involved! ❤

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