- Take your little one to get a new backpack and indoor shoes. Familiarize him with the bus stop, or which route you’ll walk to school.
- Read books about the first day. Try Franklin Goes to School, Llama Llama Misses Mama, and Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten.
- Establish your morning routine, including putting on shoes and a jacket independently. Plan to have at least five to 10 minutes of free time before leaving the house so your child doesn’t feel anxious and rushed.
- Visit the closest playground to the school as often as you can so your student can hopefully meet some little friends who will also be starting kindergarten.
- Practise the drop-off and letting him walk into the kindergarten schoolyard on his own.
- Label all of your child’s belongings (including the extra set of clothes you’ll be leaving in the classroom) and let him choose something special to wear on his first day.
- Reinforce your morning routine. “Walk to school daily and practise saying goodbye,” says Elia Kontostergios. Or walk to the bus stop and give your tot a lesson in bus safety (stay seated) and etiquette (keep your hands to yourself).
- Answer any questions your kid still has. Remind him of his teacher’s name, and who will pick him up after school. Talk about manners and what happens in the classroom. “Get him excited about school and explain all the fun things that happen there,” Elia Kontostergios says.
A version of this article appeared in our August 2013 issue with the headline, “Kindergarten confidential: Kindergarten countdown”, p. 68.