"How to get your child ready for nursery" or Preschool

How to get your child ready for nursery school
Photo by Gautam Arora

Those little feet won’t be little forever. In a blink of an eye, your baby is getting ready to attend nursery soon.

And now, you would want to collect as much information as you can about "how to get your child ready for nursery school". After all, this is going to be the first big independent step for your little one so, mama I know you are not going to settle for less.

Before proceeding further have you asked yourself if your baby is ready to go to nursery (pre-school) or not? Whether your little one is that independent or not? Make sure that your child's ready for nursery first before anything else. 

Starting nursery life is both exciting and overwhelming at the same time. It is often hard to predict how exactly the child is going to react to this big change in their life.

It is not easy for parents too to leave their child to a new place/ environment and amongst new faces. Parents may also feel anxious, nervous, and emotional.

But with some preparations and encouragement, this big transition into a nursery can be made easier.

By now you must have done some groundwork required to choose the most suitable nursery for your kid. Haven’t you?

Now the time is near when you are going to send off your little one to the best nursery.

Here is how you can prepare your child for nursery school” to ensure a smooth transition.

1. Try to socialize more often:

Give your child more some opportunity to mingle with other kids of the same age.

If it is your only child, they may struggle to make connections initially when they see a lot of children altogether.

So, the best thing to do is get them used to be around children before you send them off to the nursery.

When kids socialize, they make new friends, learn to trust, share and cooperate with each other.


2. Teach them how to communicate their needs:

The child needs to be taught about how to convey what they feel or think to other people.

Like some will run around the house or wiggle when they want to go for pee-pee or poo-poo.

If by chance, they fall down and by chance get hurt, they should convey it to the teacher.

Help them build their language skills in a fun way and try to repeat what you teach so that it is easy to remember.

So, it becomes vital to teach the kids how to communicate their needs to the teacher.


3. Give them simple task:

Apart from activities like feeding & dressing which they can do on their own by now they can also help you with some simple tasks.

They can now put their toys away or  tidy up the place on their own once they are done with playing.

They can easily lay the table and put the plates into the sink without any help.

Involve them in cooking/baking, for example, they can help in making the batter of a cake or making cookie dough.

When the child helps you with some of the easy house chores, it gives them a sense of accomplishment and increases their level of confidence.


4. Practise some short separation if possible:

If you have not used any childcare providers in past or never been apart from your child it is going to be hard for both mom and child.

If possible, give your baby some time to play on her own or with other kids while you keep some distance or keep away for some time.

Leave your kids for about half an hour to your friends who have kids of the same age and let the child play independently.

Also don’t forget to tell them upon your return that they played wonderfully when mama was not there with them. This will give them a reassurance that you go but also return for them.


5. Start practicing a routine & stick to it:

A little effort following a routine can add up to a big result.

If your child gets used to waking up on time and follow the daily routine that you have set for him/her, then it usually gets easier for them to understand what they are expected to do.

Routine also gives a child a kind of reassurance. They feel safe in the given environment.

Your little one, who has been scribbling with the crayon on the paper or tracing letters with a marker pen will find it comforting to use them when he is in the nursery and trying to find his feet.   

Some kids don’t understand or follow a routine especially when it is new for them. Hence it becomes important to convey to them in a fun and easy way.

Also, it is equally important to stick to the routine once started to reduce stress levels and anxiety.  

6. Must potty train:

It is true that potty training is a development process and not a race.

Make sure they are potty trained well before attending nursery.

You will see a lot of articles about how to potty train your child in 3 days but remember this is not at all possible with every child.

Try not to rush the process as every child grows at a different pace.

Make sure the child should be able to pull down and up their pants, wipe clean themselves, flush and wash their hands on their own before you send them off to the nursery.


7. Help to build their skills:

If they get familiar with the activities in their routine, they will show interest and be less likely to experience stress or anxiety. Also, let them learn by having a variety of experiences.

a. Sing nursery rhymes with them.

b. Read them books (even though some will have the  attention span of a fruity fly but still, try and develop a habit)

c. Do art and craft with them or something which involves  sitting down for some time.

d. Help them recognize shapes, colours, numbers, and letters.

e. Play games with them which involve taking turns.

f. Get out and about, try taking them to different places and show all different environments.

g. Help them build their motor and coordination skills by letting them water the plants, let them play with clay or play dough, threading large beads, solving puzzles, drawing, and cutting.


8. Talk to your child about starting nursery:

Know what they think about going to nursery.

They should know why they are getting dressed in the morning, having breakfast then starting with activities every day.

The child needs to be well informed that in some time they are going to venture out in the world where your kid is going to make a lot of friends, play, sing and learn new things.

Ease your child’s fears, worries, and concerns before the nursery starts.

9. Arrange a school shopping trip:

This is the most fun and entertaining activity for kids when we take them out for shopping the school essentials.

Get them a nice school bag, water bottle, lunch box & uniform (if needed).

Tell them how they are going to use it in the nursery.

Don’t forget to label the items to prevent any confusion.


10. Ask for Settling in session:

The first hurdle is choosing amongst the best nurseries for your child and the second one is settling in your child to the nursery.

Some children settle in as quick as a flash whereas some take their time.

Look for those nurseries that offer settling in sessions.

Basically, you stay in the nursery with the child for a couple of sessions to get familiar with the new environment and people around.

Show your little one all the important places he needs to know about like toilet, playground, classroom, teacher’s room, canteen, etc.


11. Help your child stay calm & positive:

First of all, we need to tackle our conflicting emotions as parents.

If you can, please try to hide your emotions because a child can easily understand by your facial expressions if anything is wrong or worrying you.

There is separation anxiety in both child and parent and childcare providers understand that. Try to strike a balance and encourage your kid towards taking his/her first step into nursery life and try to make the transition as smooth as you can.

Kids are usually like sponges and will absorb things and adapt to the new the environment in some time or for some instantly.


Getting your child ready for nursery will take some time and effort from you and your child. Here patience is the key so, don’t try to rush. Rather set up a routine months before sending them off to the nursery.

I hope, your child settles in smoothly and learns while having lots of fun with other kids and teachers.

Related Posts:

How to find a good nursery school for your child

Top 25 Nursery Rhymes with lyrics & Attractive Printables for Kids

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