In this day and age, where both parents in a household work full-time or a family is headed by a single parent, quality daycare is very important. Many young infants start going to daycare at a young age, and the transition tends to be smooth. But if you're putting a toddler into daycare for the first time, you may be worried about how your child will adjust. Use the following tips to help make things easier for your toddler when he or she begins going to daycare full-time:
Visit the Daycare Center in Advance
Prior to your child's first full day of being at daycare, it is a good idea to visit the center a few times so your toddler can meet the teachers and interact with the other kids in the classroom. During the initial visit, you may want to stay in the room and serve as a source of comfort, but encourage your child to take part in the activities. If possible, arrange for your child to spend an hour or two at the daycare center without you prior to his or her first full day.
Behave in a Confident Manner
Even if you are nervous about your toddler being in daycare for the first time, it is important that you do not let your nervousness show. Young children can be very perceptive, and if your child sees that you are nervous or stressed about the transition to daycare, there is a good chance that he or she will follow your lead. Try explaining the daily schedule to your toddler so he or she knows what to expect, let your child know that the teacher and other kids are excited for him or her to be there, and make it a point to emphasize that you will be there to pick up your child each day.
Develop a Good Drop-Off Routine
In the first few weeks of daycare, your toddler may not be happy in the morning when you drop him or her off. Resist the urge to try to sneak out quietly, as this can break your child's sense of trust and make adjusting to daycare harder. Always say goodbye with a hug or kiss, and remind your child that you'll be back in a few hours. Eventually, your child will most like start looking forward to going to daycare and the drop-off routine will get shorter and shorter. Contact a daycare like Advantage Learning Center for more information.