After a long day at day care, it’s typical for children to go through a phase of throwing a tantrum at pick-up time. When picking up your child from day care becomes a bear, it can become something you both dread. Fortunately, if you are proactive about it, you don’t have to worry about this problem long term. In this blog, we will go over some time-tested tips that can help ease the stress of day care pick-up.

Validate the Feelings

Day care can be a rollercoaster of emotions for children. When you first bring your kid to our day care in Southington, they are full of apprehension, anxiety, and excitement. They may feel sad or even angry about being separated from you all day. Over time, they come to like spending days with their friends and teachers, and become quite attached to their preschool life. Then they are, once again, taken away from comfort at pick-up time.

While these types of transitions are a part of the day-to-day grind for you, this is new to your young child, and it will take time to adjust. The mixed feelings they have are overwhelming, and it doesn’t help for them to be met with frustration or impatience. Often times, all your child needs to know is that you understand why they are feeling the way that they are, and that it is okay and normal to experience these emotions. Give them the space to express these feelings, and you may find that pick-up time doesn’t have to be as dramatic.

Make it More Exciting

Pick-up time is often a big disappointment for your child. Not only are you interrupting their play time with their friends, they may think of this time as a downhill slide to bedtime. However, if you give them a reason to look forward to the end of the day, chances are, they won’t throw a fit. For example, you may set aside the first half hour when you get home as some special, quality time with your child. This way, going home is an exciting event, not something that is interrupting their fun.

Prepare For the Week

This tip is for reducing your own stress. One of the common struggles of pick-up time is that you are trying to get home as soon as possible. This is understandable when you still have to get dinner started on top of the rest of your extensive to-do list. You can do yourself a favor by better preparing for the week during the weekend so you don’t have to rush out the day care door. On Sunday, do what you can to meal prep for the week—you might try chopping up all your vegetables in advance, making any marinades, or throwing together a crock pot meal or two. If you are feeling less stressed, your child will pick up on this and relax more.

At Foundations for Learning, we understand that day care can be a difficult adjustment, but we are happy to provide a stable, loving environment to ease this emotional time. If you are looking for child care in Southington, contact us!