Tips for helping your child when they get upset at daycare

Early childhood teacher



In todays episode, we chatted with early childhood teacher Leah Tibbits from Leah and the First Years. 

We chatted about the fact it is common for kids to be nervous about transitioning into an ECE centre. It is common for them to experience big emotions. At under 3 years their brain is still developing so much. They are building the foundation of who they are attached to.

If your child is clingy, you can make it easier when you leave them at the centre by being proactive. It starts by talking about it at home. Create rituals to help your child to say goodbye ie special high five, wave from a certain window each time. 

Be confident as a parent as your child is reading your body language and energy. Try not to keep coming back and being uncertain to leave them with their teachers. "That's ok to be sad I'll come back this afternoon."  They need to know that you are going and not try to be sneaky and distract them, then leave them while they are not watching.

If you find your child regularly drags out goodbyes and gets very upset when you leave, have a chat with your child's favourite teacher. Talk about how you can work together to support your child and help them build relationships with other kids and their teacher. If they have a friend at daycare/kindy you could arrange a playdate with their whanau so your child can build attachment with another child that they will look forward to playing with at the ECE centre.

Children articulate their emotions different from adults. Know that you are not a bad parent when you walk away from your upset child in the morning dropping them off at daycare. Give your centre a call if you are worried that your child may be still crying or upset. 

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