November 8, 2019

5 Secrets for Overcoming Separation Anxiety

5 Ways for Overcoming Separation Anxiety when your child attends preschool.

Stop the separation blues.

Toddlers from 18 months, even up to 2 years of age, often develop separation anxiety when their parents are out of sight. Although normal, this can cause undue stress to them and their parents when they have to be apart.

Here are some tips to help you and your child overcome separation anxiety and make the daycare drop” easy for both parent and child.

Here are some tips to help you and your child overcome separation anxiety:

mom talking to baby before dropping off at daycare

Talk to your child about what to expect in their preschool center.

Children need to feel safe.  Being left in a new place can be scary for anyone, but especially for little ones.  Help prevent the fear by talking to him/her about what they can expect. Talk to them about their routine and new schedule. Help get them excited about their new teacher, new friends, and all the types of things that babies learn while attending child care. 

Explain where you will go and what you will do when you leave.

  • Talk to your child about your leaving. 
  • Tell your child you are going to work or run errands. 
  • Talk about what they will be doing in class at daycare and what you will be doing in your day “Daddy has a meeting with clients today, and you have to practice your ABCs.”
  • Let them know who will be picking up and when mommy will pick you up after snack time today!” 
walker childcare playground

Give your child a tour of the Daycare.

Prior to his/her first day, we always suggest a tour of the preschool.  (you can schedule your tour with us now.) 

Meet the teachers and other key providers in the center. Talk about the teachers with your child, use their name and help them start feeling comfortable with new important people in their lives. 

Help your child feel more confident.

This is a great teaching moment for how to introduce him/herself to other people. 

  • Practice/ role-play with your child until they are comfortable introducing themselves and talking to other people. 
  • Peer interactions may be new to your child, talk about sharing and being a friend. 
daycare aged girl holding a clock to remind her mom to be on time to pick her up

Stay on Schedule

Many of our parents and kids are on different plans coming 3 and 5 days a week. 

Children thrive on a schedule and drop off and pick up is no different.

  • If possible, arrive a few minutes before class starts to help eliminate stress and worry. 
  • Bring your child into the center excited for the new day.
  • Just be sure to set a time and stick with it.
  • Keep drop off short, stay long enough to give teachers any important information, then tell your child goodbye reminding them when you will be back. 

These tips help minimize the anxiety felt by your child but eliminating this fear takes time.

It is important to remember  this is a normal fear, and time, practice, and love help will help ease this transition.  Eventually, it'll be as simple as simply saying goodbye.

Article written by Samantha Glass
Samantha Glass is the director at The Way PDO and Preschool. She has been with the program since it started in 2016, working hands-on in the classroom as well as directing the program.
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram