Most first moments for a child are exciting to observe as a parent — first steps, first words, first time sleeping through the night, etc.
But some firsts can be downright scary, like sending your kid to school for the first time. Even if it’s your fifth child, it can still be a difficult transition.
As a parent, it’s only natural to worry about sending your child to school. Now your child must learn to handle life for part of the day without you right by their side. And that can be tough to deal with as a parent.
Going to school can sometimes be challenging for kids too. Thankfully, there are some things you can do to reduce the back to school anxiety and worries kids and parents often face.
Have an open conversation
It may seem simplistic, but having an open conversation with your child about what to expect when going to school can help ease concerns. It gives you a chance to learn how your child is feeling, and to offer support. It’s also a prime teaching moment to help your child know safety rules and behavioral expectations.
Create an emergency plan
One of those safety rules you’ll want to cover is what to do in case of an emergency. Make sure your child knows things like:
- What to do if she gets injured
- Tell an adult if something is a danger to themselves or others
- Pick-up location and plan in case of a major natural disaster like an earthquake
- What to do if he gets lost
Memorize your phone number
One of the best ways to reduce back to school anxiety is to make sure your child has memorized your phone number. For some children, this can be a challenge. A fun way to help your child memorize your phone number is to set it to the tune of a song.Just think how well you remember Jenny’s number from the 80s – 867-5309…
Consider a smart watch/tracker
A common concern for parents sending their child to school is what to do if your child needs to reach you during the school day. While it would be nice for your child to be able to call you if needed, your child may not be ready for the responsibility of a phone.
A child-focused smart watch may be a great solution. There are many smart watches out there for kids, and many are reasonably priced. These devices are durable, kid-friendly, and come with features that bring peace of mind to parents, and a certain cool factor for kids.
Child smartwatches often come with features like:
- phone calling to a small set of numbers (mom, dad, grandparent, etc) so your child can make calls right from the watch
- GPS tracker so you know where your child is at any time
- simple text messaging
These watches often come with a monthly service fee through your mobile phone provider, but it’s usually affordable. If you are considering getting a smart watch, be sure to check with your child’s school first to see if these devices are permitted.
Nothing can cause more stress than a rushed morning, especially on the first day of school. Establishing a back to school routine can simplify the morning rush and help your child leave for school feeling prepared and excited.