Adapting to nursery, kindergarten or to daycare

Each child has different needs in adapting to new realities/routines. Entry into the daycare/nursery/kindergarten is always a source of concern for parents.

kindergarden
Sean Lancaster at freeimages.com

A good option may be to spend some time with him on the first day and assess whether he is integrating and helping him to do so: helping to find toys, showing all spaces, establishing relationships of trust with caregivers, introduce the other children…

Another important aspect is our example: our children instinctively react as we do (as a mirror), that is, if we are anxious, they will show signs of anxiety, if we do not trust the people who will be their main caregivers, they will not trust them also, and so on.

That’s why I recommend that you take a deep breath, trust that it will go well, leave the clock at home on the first day (go without time to leave or come back) and focus on your child and help him discover the news!
He will give you all the signals you need to evaluate how you need to proceed in their adaptation!

Once you see that he is integrated, set a goodbye routine (kiss and hug, for example) and leave. This may not happen on the first day, but it must happen someday. Do not try to leave if you´re not confident that you should leave. When you start the goodbye routine it’s a non-return point that you should not come back from.
After you leave alone, if your heart gets tight, it’s normal! If you want to cry, cry! That’s why it’s so important to make sure that you’re doing your best for your child and you´re comfortable with it! Make also your own adaptation to the new reality, but without interfering with his (and preferably without him realizing it).

Good luck!

Signs that the child is ready to stop using diapers

  • Shows curiosity about using the toilet.
  • She/He wants to go with parents (or caregivers) to the bathroom.
  • Begins to mention when she/he has a dirty diaper.
  • Stop what she/he are doing when are “filling” the diaper.
  • It has the autonomy to fulfill a simple order (ex: Stay seated).

    Does anyone remember any more?

Bye-bye binky!

Letting go the pacifier doesn’t have to be a drama. The trick is the previous preparation.

1 °. Set the last day. (It should be 2 or 3 months (minimum) for preparation)

2 °. Define the process. (Eg: Give to Santa, Go hang in the garden tree for the storks to take, etc.)

3 °. Start detachment:
a) reduce the amount of time that the child has the pacifier and encourage her/him to withdraw it from her/him mouth;
b) begin to show the difference between babies and grown-ups;
c) gradually limit free access to the pacifier that should be reserved for tantrums and sleep time;
d) from times to times simulate the loss of the pacifier (not finding it at bedtime, for example)

The child should be encouraged to either give or deliver the pacifiers (all of them) on the last defined day. During the whole process, it is important to evaluate the child’s reactions and to praise all the active attitudes that the child demonstrates (ex: “Great, you took off the pacifier), but avoid highlighting the passive ones (ex: do NOT say “Great, you spent all day without your binky”). It’s important that all caregivers are aligned in the way they act.

Are accidental all accidents?

For a child, the adult world is full of “dangers” and its innate curiosity, as well as the lack of notion of consequence, causes many “accidents” with children. This leads me to the definition of an accident: an unexpected and inevitable event that causes physical, emotional, or material harm.
That said, are all the “accidents” with children, real accidents?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Karolina Michalak @ freeimages.com

The child who gets caught on a closing house door … is it an accident? The adult who shares the home with the child could not have that door protected or it lacked supervision?
Do not think that I am an apologist for children to live in bubbles and without any danger around, but if it is true that the child should be taught to protect himself when he is close to a possible danger, it is even more certain that it is up to the adult, to protect and avoid possible “accidents”. We should be always aware of all possible dangers to the eyes and the natural course of a child’s daily life, we must avoid the greatest or more easily accessible dangers to children and teach them to live together and protect themselves from all (including those we avoid, either by protection or by elimination). That is, we must always and first of all identify with the danger to the child and how to avoid it, then protect it, eliminate it or supervise the first contacts.

For example, I have a small glass top table in the living room (near the sofas). Even when my little ones did not talk (but they already crawled) when I began to show them the danger of the glass and how they should do before they got up (when they were crawling around the table). From an early age, they learned to look up first and/or put their hands over their heads before thinking of getting up and even identifying where the glass was. I did not protect or withdraw, but I taught them and supervised them all while they made their first “paths” around the room. I did not avoid all the hits, but there was never anyone more worthy of attention… And with each bump, we restarted the teachings. Without entering into the wrong transfer of responsibilities, like, starting with: “look what you did! Didn’t I tell you that you can’t do that!”.

Never forget that the responsibility lies with the ADULT! What we can/should do is (after calming/caring for the child), is go back to the beginning: “Look here! This is dangerous! You can hurt yourself! You must always do this” … Show him/her how, alert him/her and supervise next times!

Positive Speech

Do you know about those days when the kids wake up with fully charged batteries and seem to just screw up everything they touch and we just scream around:

-Don’t do that!
-Don’t go there!
-Do not climb to that chair!
-Don’t throw away all the toys!
-No, no, no …

árvore
Armin Hanisch @ freeimages.com

Do you know what I mean? Yeah… We all go through this! Sometimes it seems like they just want to tease us, don’t they?
How to avoid? Is it even possible?
Yes, it is! We can avoid it!

Notice the following: Did we tell them what they could do, at some point? Do we guide them to safe play? Or did we make any constructive suggestions that they could use? No, we just barred activities without giving them any alternatives…

In another and completely different context, I have learned to use positive discourse as a form of communication that does not raise psychological barriers to commercial speech.
The truth is that it works miracles with children.

Try to start replacing the “no” with “what”. For example:
“Do not do this!” Replace with: “-What you can do is …”
It sounds simple, doesn’t it?

Well, the truth is that applying it to 100% requires daily training and is easier if we apply it generically and not just in particular situations (such as just to deal with children only). In fact, I assure you that you will notice how everyone begins to react to you in a different way, being less negative and more cooperative.

Go on, try it!

P.S. Scream also doesn’t help… Use a calm and assertive tone.

React to every ouch!

Babies and children, in general, tend to react in response to the reaction of their main caregivers, that is, no matter how much it may cost us at first, we should not react with distress to every fall/trip or others from our little bundles of joy.

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T. Rolf @ sxc.hu

1º Assess the situation

2º Evaluate the reaction of the little one

3º If we have to intervene, try not to enlarge the situation

Ex: If we are in a boat that seems to be in trouble and the captain is panicking, what will be our reaction? What if he seems to be calm in solving the problem? Yeah … and we’re adults