Separation anxiety is a common problem that many young children experience when they start nursery school. It can be stressful and emotional for both the child and the parent. Here are some strategies that parents and EYFS curriculum nursery school teachers can use to help children cope with separation anxiety.
Establish a routine:
A predictable routine can help children feel secure and comfortable in their new environment. Parents can establish a way for their child’s morning routine and make it consistent. Nursery school teachers can also help by creating a predictable schedule for the day, including times for snacks, naps, and playtime.
Practice separating from your child for short periods in the weeks leading up to their first day of nursery school. Start with short periods of separation, like leaving them with a trusted caregiver while you run errands or attend a meeting. Gradually increase the time apart so your child gets used to being away from you.
Acknowledge your child’s feelings:
It’s essential to acknowledge your child’s feelings and validate them. Reassure your child that it’s okay to feel scared or anxious and that they will be okay. Let them know it’s normal to miss you and you will return soon.
Create a transition plan:
Create a transition plan with your child’s nursery school teacher. A transition plan could include the following:
- A short visit to the school before the first day.
- A phone call with the teacher.
- An introduction to some other children.
The aim is to gradually introduce your child to their new environment and build trust with their teachers.
It’s essential to stay positive and avoid showing anxiety or worry. Your child can pick up on your emotions, making them more anxious. Talk to them about the fun activities they will be doing and the friends they will make. Ensure you always say goodbye to them positively, telling them you will see them soon.
Separation anxiety is a common issue young children face when starting nursery school. Following these strategies, parents and nursery school teachers can help children cope with stress and build confidence in their new environment. A positive and supportive approach will help children adjust to the new routine and start enjoying their nursery school experience.