Olive Tree Education and Care is a relational childcare centre led by a male head-teacher who facilitates a fun learning programme where boys can be boys and girls can do anything! Parents love the spacious and caring babies and toddlers unit. We care for children aged 6 months – 5 years.
7 Ways To Help Your Child Transition from Childcare to Kindergarten ♡
Let’s face it. Change can be both exciting and scary, and often at the same time!
Progressing from the Olive Tree Education and Care Infants and Toddlers Unit to the Kindergarten Unit is one of the first major transitions your child will face in their life.
The infants and toddlers side is peaceful and nurturing. If your child has been there since they were a baby they will have close bonds with the teachers. The kindergarten side is bigger and more adventurous and calls children into greater independence.
As teachers we treat each child as an individual and do lots of work with your child to make this transition smooth and positive.
As the parent, you have an important part to play in reassuring your child throughout this transition and helping them to establish a sense of security and attachment in the kindergarten unit.
Here are six things you can do to help your child to navigate this transition positively.
1. Be Positive
Your child will take their cues about this change from you. On an intuitive level “Mum and Dad think this is okay” lays the foundation for “I think this is okay.” If you communicate anxiety about the change they will often pick up on this and be unsettled themselves. On the other hand, if you are positive and open to the new possibilities of the change, your child will draw strength and confidence from you.
2. Visit The Kindergarten Unit With Your Child
It is very helpful for you to visit the kindergarten unit with your child to positively reinforce the new space. There are lots of fun things to play with which are a great draw-card. Treat the kindergarten unit like the scene of a fun new adventure. You can explore together the art materials freely available (complete with hot glue guns!), the carpentry tables, the tree house, the mud-pit and the family play-room. By focusing on the fun new activities available you will help to make the kindergarten side more enticing.
3. Read the Kindergarten Pamphlet Together
We have a photo pamphlet for the Kindergarten side which helps to orient your child to the way things are done. The photos introduce your child to important everyday concept showing things like ‘This is where we eat’, ‘These are the lockers where your bag will be kept’ etc. It also gives other information such as the kindergarten daily routine. The more your child knows about what to expect the more settled he or she will be.
4. Get To Know The Kindergarten Teachers
The transition process usually takes up to 3 weeks. Where possible we transition children as a group so your child can make the change with friends. We gradually increase your child’s hours of daily visiting from the Infants and Toddlers side over the three weeks. We will have a familiar teacher from the Infants & Toddlers Unit take your child to the Kindergarten side and spend time with them in their first week. It helps hugely if you also come and meet the kindergarten teachers with your child and get to know them. Your child will have become very bonded with their early teachers to it is important to help them to transfer their attachments to their new teachers. You can help this to occur by relating positively with the teachers in front of your child and affirming the teacher when you are speaking to your child about them.
5. Be Clear About The New Home Base
Once your child has officially transferred to the kindergarten roll you will need to drop them off on the kindy side helping them to put their lunchbox on the kitchen bench and their bag in their locker. Even if they go and visit the Infants & Toddlers unit for a while when they first arrive, by putting their belongings in the Kindergarten you will help your child to know where their new home base is.
6. Communicate Your Concerns
We want you to feel comfortable to talk about any issues or concerns with our teachers. We are here to help and we have helped families work through many transitions in our time!
7. Be Positive
We can’t stress this one enough, which is why this message occurs at the both the beginning and end of this list! You will likely have some emotions of your own to process about this transition. That is perfectly okay and understandable. However, you will serve your child best by being careful to process those emotions with other adults and to keep your communication with your child positive and reassuring.
You may also like to read: The Art of Transitioning Well | How to Be Resilient With Change For The Sake of Your Child
VISIT OLIVE TREE EDUCATION AND CARE
At Olive Tree, Education and Care in Bayfair Mount Maunganui, you’ll find happy children in a nurturing environment, enjoying genuine relationships with caring teachers who facilitate creative play and quality learning experiences.
Our centre is led by a male head-teacher who facilitates a fun learning programme where boys can be boys and girls can do anything! Parents love the spacious and caring babies and toddlers unit. We care for children aged 6 months – 5 years.