The dos and don’ts of dropping your son at preschool

Mother holding in her arms little sad son.

I was so looking forward to the new school year starting. Ok, so I was a little apprehensive about my hypersensitive 6-year-old settling into grade 1. And yes, there have been a few teething problems with the first-born. But that’s another post…

However, I didn’t anticipate the gut-wrenching sobs and full-on tantrums from my usually happy-go-lucky 4-year-old at preschool drop off these past few weeks. He’s supposed to be the easy one.

My husband and I have come to dread drop off, and our stress seems to fuel our son’s. So I did a little digging and found this article by self-confessed “straight up baller at teaching preschool”, Tom Robinson.

Scarily, I’ve been ‘doing’ Tom’s first two drop-off ‘don’ts’ – 1. sneaking out and 2. looking sad. So today, I plastered a smile on my face and left my crumpled child with a kiss and a cheery wave. My heart still felt like it was breaking into a thousand pieces, but apparently he only cried for 45 minutes after I left, rather than the usual hour…

To be honest, all I want to do is sweep my ‘baby’ up and take him home, but I’m trying to see the bigger picture (and apparently I also have to turn up to work). Next year it will be prep and I want him to be happy and excited about school. As author Tom says, the best thing a parent can do to help a child get over preschool separation anxiety is leave. Hopefully, if I follow Tom’s tips, I’ll soon be able to leave my happy son and my parental guilt at the door.

Brought to you by Brighton Grammar School

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