Mornings can be rough in a preschool classroom. Drop-off time can be tearful or even chaotic as children watch mom or dad walk away. To make the transition just a little smoother for you, the kids, and the parents, here are some tips for good child care management during morning drop-off.
Tips for Making Morning Drop-Off Easier
- Set up an activity: Early mornings are usually pretty slow as parents drop off the kids over a period of an hour or so. As the kids come in they are usually free to choose their own activity, playing casually without any real structure. Rather than waiting around for everyone to show up, set up an organized activity for the kids to do (if they choose) as soon as they arrive. It certainly does not have to be mandatory, but it will facilitate an easy transition, giving them something to look focus on as they say goodbye to their parents. Rather than sitting around, thinking about missing mom or dad, their attention will be focused on something fun and productive.
- Let them hold onto a “home-toy” or “lovey”: Sometimes kids just need their comfort object to remind them that they are safe. Let them hold on to something familiar to ease the transition from home to daycare.
- Work with the parents: Talk to the parents and work out some sort of routine. Some parents have a harder time saying goodbye than their kids do. Let them get to know you. Once they know that they can trust you, they will have a much easier transition as well.
- Display a schedule: The concept of time is hard for kids to comprehend. Some days seem to go by faster than others. To help them understand and remind them that their parents will be back for them, make sure you have a large, friendly schedule displayed on your classroom wall. Of course, if the children are too young to read, don’t bother with too much text or even writing out times. Rather, for each period of the day, display a picture of the activity such as children sleeping for nap time or some fruits and veggies for snack time. When a child has a hard time saying goodbye in the morning, bring them over to the schedule and count with them the number of activities left until mom or dad comes back. You can even cross out each activity as you go to show them how few things are remaining.
As a preschool teacher or daycare provider, you love your kids dearly and watching them cry is truly heartbreaking. Just remember that as you bond with your students, morning drop-offs will get easier.
If you have any additional tips and tricks for daycare management or child care management solutions for the morning-drop off, feel free to post in the comments section below.