Some of the new families have been asking me about goodbyes, what to expect, and the best way to do them. I’ve heard a lot of concern about the crying, and whether or not you (the parent) are doing the right thing. I want you to know, crying and clinging before, during and after separation is absolutely typical and you are doing everything right! It is absolutely natural to feel a mixture of emotions, guilt over your child’s sadness and about not being there for them while you are away, and also relief about having more personal time for yourself. It’s important for both of you to have some time away from each other, for your health, and because your child’s attachment to you will become stronger as they learn that you will always come back for them.
This transition to school is huge for your little ones. It’s an exciting time, and everything and everyone around them is new. It may take a few weeks or more before your child bounds happily into the classroom and you leave without a teary goodbye. And that’s OK!
At pickup today, check your child’s folder. Ihave made a copy of the chapter “Saying Good-bye is sad,” from the book 1,2,3…The Toddler Years by Irene Van der Zande. It has some ideas about saying goodbye and reassurances for you. Also, remember to talk with your child and look at the Elm house booklet together when your child is away from school.
The children are doing so well in school and are so brave and strong. I’m happy about having them in my class and excited to learn more about them.