Preparing Your Child for ELA
We will set up a visit prior to your child’s first day at ELA. You and your child will come for one hour in the morning to explore his/her new environment and to meet the teachers. This is a great way for your child to explore his/her environment on their own without feeling overwhelmed. Establishing trust with the teachers enables children to become comfortable with the separation from their parents. The younger the child, the more intense the feeling. Encouraging children to participate fully in saying goodbye, hugging, kissing, crying, waving, and saying, “I’ll miss you”, are all ways of bringing feelings out in the open. Once in the open, they are easier to deal with. Parents should never sneak out. Just as it’s important to let your child know that you are leaving, it is important to let them know that you will be back.
The suggestions below are to aid your child’s adjustment to his/her first regular experience away from home. We have one objective, which is to have your child enjoy school.
Remember, each child is different. Some children are happy and well-adjusted at school after three minutes and for others it can take three months. If your child adjusts immediately-consider yourself lucky. If not, don’t worry. Many children take several months until the transition is complete. If you are at all concerned, speak to your child’s teacher and see if there is anything in particular that seems to be bothering your child at school. Rest assured, the day will come, sooner or later, when your child will run into school with barely a glance backwards, looking forward to the exciting day ahead!
Each child is given a personal cubby to use during the year. These cubbies are placed at the child’s level and they hold lunches and extra clothing and jackets. The use of the cubbies encourages the children’s sense of responsibility and independence.
On the first day of school, we ask that you bring along extra changes of clothing (labeled with your child’s name): pants, shirts, underwear, and socks. These should be washable and easy to put on. You will need to check these items throughout the year to ensure that they still fit and are season appropriate. Should we need to send home the dirty clothing and you will need to replace the “cubby clothes”. Your child will also need 2 child-size blankets for nap time. During the hours of 12:00 PM and 2:30 PM, all classrooms lights are dimmed, soft music is played, and teachers read appropriate books. This is considered our rest time and all children must rest their bodies to re-energize for an exciting afternoon.