Boy, today was a hard day. Today we saw our oldest child start school! We are going to be able to walk him to his classroom for the first week, but after that he will have to learn to find the classroom himself. The rest of the week should be a lot easier that the first day though. But let me give you 4 practical tips for helping cope with your first child starting school (outside of the home).
1. It’s okay to cry
Am I talking about you crying or your child crying? YES! Both, it’s okay. Now I was surprised that Aric didn’t put up much of a fuss when he got to his classroom. He went straight to his chair, sat down and started coloring and didn’t even seem to care that we were gone. But as I passed by other classrooms I could hear kids crying all over the place. After we left the school and got into the car, I saw that Renee was clearly upset that our baby boy started school. But hey it is okay to cry, you will eventually feel better about them going to school.
2. Keep yourself busy
After hopping into the car, comforting the wife, and looking over the items the school could use as donations for the classroom, it was time to keep ourselves busy. We treated ourselves out to breakfast at McDonald’s and then drove on over to Wal-mart and Dollar Tree to get some of the items on the donation list. After picking up those items, we swung back by the school and dropped them off to an ecstatic office staff, as most of the time it takes them weeks to get any donations. This made us feel good about our child being there.
3. Plan on being involved at the school
One of the things we have already been talking about for weeks, was the fact that we wanted to be heavily involved in our sons school. We talked about ways we can get involved, so that teachers can get to know us, we can get to know them, and we can see how our child interacts with their teacher and classmates. Contrary to popular belief, public schools DO want you as parents involved! So start planning on getting involved and it will help ease that realization that this was the first day of school.
4. Think about what questions you are going to ask your child when you pick him/her up
Start thinking about the questions you want to ask your child when you go to pick him/her up. Grant it, most of the time a kindergartener isn’t really going to have a whole lot to tell you from the first day of class. But here are some good questions to think about: What did you eat? What did you learn? Do you remember the name of your teacher? Did you have fun? Did you play on the playground? What did you play on the playground? Do you remember the name of the children who sit beside you? ECT.
What tips do you have for making the first day easier?