How to Deal with Child Separation Anxiety at Drop Off

When children go to school, they feel anxious, especially if they see their parents drive off to work. Parents deal with child anxiety separation in different ways, but is it effective? Some children continue crying even after they arrive inside their classroom. Parents wonder how to calm their children.

The feeling of being dropped off scares children as they enter an unfamiliar place. It takes a while before they get comfortable with their surroundings. Teachers help parents ease children and manage their separation anxiety.

How to deal with child separation anxiety?

Parents send their children to school and drive to work. Children feel scared that they may not see their parents and start crying. They get emotional, especially if they don’t get their goodbye hugs, kisses, or words of encouragement. The Pillars Christian Learning Center helps parents manage their child’s separation anxiety.

Share encouraging stories about school

One of the primary things that parents need to do to manage their child’s separation anxiety is to share good stories about their own experience with school. However, challenges never go away and parents might mention bad experiences. Focus on the positive experiences and things you learned in school. This lets children know that you were once in their position and it is normal.

Remember to avoid using or starting a conversation with these sentences:

  • Refrain saying, “Yay! Classes tomorrow got suspended!” or, “We need to get you to school despite this weather!”
  • Avoid taking their toys away just because they won’t stop crying or fussing.
  • Even if they successfully tied their shoelaces, do not give them treats just because they did it well.

Words are very powerful tools and when parents share the right stories, it makes them think positively about school. This helps them think brightly about school and look forward to attending class.

Leave a bracelet or comforting piece to the child

During their parents’ younger days, they brought their favorite stuffed toy or blanket to school. They do this to feel secure about going to an unfamiliar place. For their children, it may be their parents’ bracelet, hair tie, or even handkerchief. Anything they can hold works fine!

When children hold onto it, they can cope with their fears. This makes them relax and calm down just in time for school. This reassures them that they will see their parents at the end of school.

Strive to arrive earlier than the other children

Arriving earlier than most children reduces their anxiety as they settle in before the other kids. This gives them a chance to talk to their teacher and open up about things that bother them. Then, children can share their favorite things about school or their favorite activities. Talking helps them release tension and calm down.

When they arrive earlier, it helps them relax and prepare for the day.

Guide them through school

School gives children different tasks that confuse them at times. Children tell their parents that they get confused with these activities and need assistance. Parents can walk them through the activities and guide them along the way. Some parents walk their kids through the hallway.

Remember to hold their hands while walking along the school hallway. Pause for a moment when you reach their classroom. Give them a good luck hug or kiss, or just a simple reassurance that you will fetch them after school.

Always give children goodbye hug or kiss

A goodbye kiss or hug always comforts children and helps them calm down. Parents, never leave your children at school without giving them any hug or kiss. That just strengthens their separation anxiety. Your actions help them feel loved and secure that you’ll come back to fetch them after school.

These actions calm them down. It reassures children about going through the day and making friends along the way.

Dropping off children at school gives parents challenges and things can get emotional. Parents deal with their child separation anxiety in different ways. The Pillars Christian Learning Center continues to help children and parents manage their fears and survive preschool.