These helpful tips will help ease you and your child's nerves on the first day of preschool.

MAKE PRESCHOOL PRE-VISITS

The more time getting your child adjusted to his or her new surroundings, the better. Be sure to introduce your child to the teacher, spend time on the playground, and take a tour of the classroom and building. Walk around and explore it together.

MAKE IT CLEAR

Describe what will happen on the first day. Often, it's the unknown that can be scary to a child this age. Talk about what he or she will do during the day so there is a level of comfort from day one. And then, start practicing "in school behaviors" at home like putting toys away after play and listening for story time.

MAKE ON-TIME PICKUPS

If your child believes that you will be there when you said you would, then she will be more likely to separate easily.

MAKE IT POSITIVE

This transition can be harder on mom and dad than it is for the child. Don't assume that your child will have separation anxiety. Avoid leading questions like, "Are you worried about school?" Instead, focus on all the exciting new and fun aspects of starting school. Vow not to dwell or talk about how much you will miss your child—he or she will pick up on your anxiety. Help him or her pick up on your excitement!

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