Preparing to send your child off to Kindy is a big milestone for all parents. And for the months leading up to their first day, we’re meticulously organising, trying our best to make sure they are as ready as they can be.
But sometimes, it’s us parents who could do with a helping hand. After all, it’s just a big a day for us in letting them go than it is for them waving goodbye to us.
Here are six things you need to prepare yourself for:
1. YOU need to make friends.
Okay, so one of the things some parents really worry about is how their child is going to navigate their way through the excruciating social complexities of the school playground. Let me tell you, be worried for yourself. Standing at school pick up as a new school mum is tough and intimidating and the parents can be so cliquey.
There are going to parents from all walks of life and you will meet some of the most divine people and have a blast with them at Trivia nights etc, but you will also meet some people who, well, won’t be ‘your cup of tea’ and you won’t be theirs. Staying amicable no matter what transpires is the key, as it is a long haul till graduation (and, if it is a local public school your child is attending, these parents could be your neighbours!)
Go to the parent nights out… trust me, mums and dads on a childless night out party harder then any 21-year-old footy player on a Mad Monday. Join the mums’ netball team and go for coffees after drop off if you can.
Building bonds with other parents helps create the school community, allow for play dates and any help you might need if you run late for school pick up, texting questions as you rush out the door like “Sam is it bloody sport or library today? I can never remember!” and “Hi Bec! Is canteen open today? Please, for love of god can you say yes!! We are out of bread!”
This usually happens in the second or third week back. Suddenly your little cherub will start replying back to you with a tone and will show sass and hold you accountable for every word that comes out of your mouth. You think to yourself Holy Crap! what has happened to my sweet little kiddo that thought I was the best thing ever?
It’s called independence, splashed with an overwhelmingly wave of tiredness. Suddenly they realise they can have a life outside of you. They have six hours a day where they can make their own choices and feel self-entitled while doing it. It’s like they suddenly realise, ‘Wait a minute, I am in charge of my own destiny!’ This is where you hope all those years of nagging about making good behaviour choices and having good manners has embedded a little voice recording inside their head to remind them the appropriate way to act when they are faced with adversity.
3. Be organised.
A soon as a permission slip comes home, sign it and put it straight back in their bag. As soon as a birthday invite comes home, RSVP then and there and put it on the fridge. I know you probably won’t, but try and lay out uniforms and have bags packed. Don’t you dare even attempted to make lunches the night before, let’s just try and do realistic achievable things.
Start assignments when you get them. Do a bit each day. Do a bit of homework each day and do readers every night or morning (depending on the schoolattude!)