5 ways to help your kid adjust to child care

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By Dr Richard C. Woolfson   — December 19, 2017

  • 1 / 6

    Your toddler has just started childcare and you’ve observed that she has not been coping very well.

    That’s understandable – after all, she’s used to being at the centre of your world at home.

    At the preschool, she has to learn important skills, such as waiting for the teacher’s attention and following a new routine, instead of being allowed to do whatever she wants.

    She also has to get used to taking turns when playing with her peers, and sharing toys and equipment.

    Here are five common problems and how you can help your little one deal with them.

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  • 2 / 6 She constantly tries to hog the teacher and gets annoyed when she doesn’t get the attention

    She is so used to being “the star” at home, she expects the same in school. Put her in more situations where she isn’t the only child.

    For example, you can arrange a play date with a few tots at home.

    The more experience she has of sharing an adult’s attention with others of her own age, the quicker she will adapt.

    Related: Viral post shows child smeared with faeces at River Valley childcare centre

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  • 3 / 6 She hits other children when they don’t do what she wants

    She is frustrated because she can’t get her own way all the time now.

    Be firmer with her at home. Try not to give her everything she wants, the moment she wants it.

    At first she’ll challenge you, but don’t be deterred.

    Make it absolutely clear that hitting is not allowed under any circumstances.

    Let her know that the caregivers will always inform you if she is defiant, and you’ll be furious with her.

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  • 4 / 6 She loses her temper with the children and staff when she isn’t first in line

    She hasn’t learnt the key social skill of taking turns.

    At home, play games with her, and make sure you go before her at times. Remind her that her turn will always come along; she just has to wait patiently for it.

    And when she eventually sits quietly without complaining while it’s your turn, tell her how pleased you are. She’ll thrive on your encouragement and praise.

    Related: Singapore gets its first childcare centre in a nursing home

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  • 5 / 6 She refuses to go to childcare one day and this quickly becomes a regular habit

    If her language skills are strong, ask her to tell you what she likes and dislikes about it. Listen to what she says and reassure her that she’ll be fine.

    Always talk positively to her about the centre, pointing out all the exciting activities she does there and her friends who enjoy playing with her.

    Continue to take her there anyway, whether she wants to go or not.

    Related: Video: Inside Singapore’s first mega childcare centre, E-bridge at Punggol

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  • 6 / 6 She’s not sleeping well and is very tired in the morning

    She is unsettled by her childcare experience and this upsets her sleeping patterns.

    Let her know that you love her and that she has nothing to worry about. Your confidence will steadily influence her.

    Do also talk to the teachers, so that they are aware of her anxieties. They’ll show extra sensitivity towards her and make a special effort to help her settle down.

    You and the staff need to work together to get her through this temporary blip.

    (Photos: 123RF.com)

    Related: More Singapore dads are helping with childcare duties at home

     

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Your toddler has just started childcare and you’ve observed that she has not been coping very well. That’s understandable – after all, she’s used to being at the centre of your world at home. At the preschool, she has to learn important skills, such as waiting for the teacher’s attention and following a new routine, instead of being allowed to do whatever she wants. She also has to get used to taking turns when playing with her peers, and sharing toys and equipment. Here are five common problems and how you can help your little one deal with them. She constantly tries to hog the teacher and gets annoyed when she doesn’t get the attention She is so used to being “the star” at home, she expects the same in school. Put her in more situations where she isn’t the only child. For example, you can arrange a play date with a few tots at home. The more experience she has of sharing an adult’s attention with others of her own age, the quicker she will adapt. Related: Viral post shows child smeared with faeces at River Valley childcare centre She hits other children when they don’t do what she wants She is frustrated because she can’t get her own way all the time now. Be firmer with her at home. Try not to give her everything she wants, the moment she wants it. At first she’ll challenge you, but don’t be deterred. Make it absolutely clear that hitting is not allowed under any circumstances. Let her know that the caregivers will always inform you if she is defiant, and you’ll be furious with her. She loses her temper with the children and staff when she isn’t first in line She hasn’t learnt the key social skill of taking turns. At home, play games with her, and make sure you go before her at times. Remind her that her turn will always come along; she just has to wait patiently for it. And when she eventually sits quietly without complaining while it’s your turn, tell her how pleased you are. She’ll thrive on your encouragement and praise. Related: Singapore gets its first childcare centre in a nursing home She refuses to go to childcare one day and this quickly becomes a regular habit If her language skills are strong, ask her to tell you what she likes and dislikes about it. Listen to what she says and reassure her that she’ll be fine. Always talk positively to her about the centre, pointing out all the exciting activities she does there and her friends who enjoy playing with her. Continue to take her there anyway, whether she wants to go or not. Related: Video: Inside Singapore’s first mega childcare centre, E-bridge at Punggol She’s not sleeping well and is very tired in the morning She is unsettled by her childcare experience and this upsets her sleeping patterns. Let her know that you love her and that she has nothing to worry about. Your confidence will steadily influence her. Do also talk to the teachers, so that they are aware of her anxieties. They’ll show extra sensitivity towards her and make a special effort to help her settle down. You and the staff need to work together to get her through this temporary blip. (Photos: 123RF.com) Related: More Singapore dads are helping with childcare duties at home  

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