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help!! New'settling in scheme' has done my dd no favours and she is more anxious than ever!

(6 Posts)
gameforalaugh Thu 04-Sep-08 20:14:30

As I write this I feel it is too late to be putting out the feelers for advice as I am right in the centre of the situation it may be just too late??? MY dd (Nearly 5) has become extremely anxious surrounding her starting school(She is doing a new 'settling in week'), I know this is normal with the unknown and her age etc. but the build up has just began to take it's toll.
DD is usually very confident and shows no sign of worry.I can't help but feel the schools approach to starting school has only made her worse than ever.They are doing home visits which are otional but I opted to have one so the new teacher came today, with the classroom assistant.It is a laid back visit and i originally liked the idea but my dd's behaviour since the visit has only worsened.a0 she can't understand why not only are all her cousins back at school already, so is her sibling back at nursery and EVERYONE she sees has asked her how school is going.This has led to a big build up of questions in her mind and she simply can't understand why she has been treated differently to all the others, 'special treatment'if you like has increased her anxiety 100%.She has been chewing,despondant(She didn't want to talk about the home visit let alone do the colouring provided!)It has all been too much.(Both her & I just want to get on with it-a bit like 'the good old days'!I plan a day out for fun tomorrow with one of her friends who also hasn't started school in the hope that she won't feel singled out.Any idea welcomed, should i tell the school (I don't want to be one of these parents before I have even got there yet, are there any excersies I could do with her to release the anxiety? do I stop talking about school for now(She goes MOnday) do I focus on her forthcoming birthday party to take her mind off it??She rejected a painting her 3 year old sister did for her today which was upsetting as it was the first time her sibling had offered her anything of her own free will, she said it wa 'scribbly' and didn't want it.This is all jealousy. I dn't want to have to tip toe around dd2 because she is thriving positively in her new nursery class.Any ideas, similar experiences??

Flyonthewindscreen Fri 05-Sep-08 13:01:17

I would not mention school again until Monday morning (unless she brings the subject up). The build up to starting school must seem to go on forever for a nearly 5 yr old (buying the uniform, visits, questions from family, etc.). She may well be fine when it comes to actually going in! My dd started in reception yesterday and was very happy and excited after all the anticipation but deflated today as no school (they are doing alternate days for the first week).

Good luck for Monday smile

Romy7 Fri 05-Sep-08 13:57:15

dd2 starts monday after a month or two off faffing around, but then has 3 weeks of mornings only, a week of mornings and staying for lunch, and then finally goes f/t after a month.
it's just tedious, tell her that's how it is, and she'll be there soon enough. totally normal for their to be a bit of oddish behaviour - i've had it for all 3. either way, there's not a jot you can do about the process, so you have to grit your teeth and get on with it. ignore all things school over the weekend and distract her. by christmas it will all be a dim and distant memory. until dd2's turn of course.
i'd rather they just got on with it tbh.

cory Fri 05-Sep-08 14:33:57

I know it hurts but your daughter will have to go through this many times in her life: stressful situations, long waits, feelings of anger when faced with the unknown. In the long run, she will need to learn to deal with those feelings, you can't do it for her.

What you can do is to stay as calm as possible, try your hardest not to blame anyone else (such as the school's approach), accept that she will behave less well than normal (don't we all under stress?) and let her know that these feelings are normal ('I'm always scared too when I have to start a new job, go somewhere else etc etc'). Be kind and understanding, but don't expect that even your most perfect parenting can take all her fears away. As others have said, it will all be in the past soon anyway.

AbbyLou Fri 05-Sep-08 14:59:28

I find these 'settling in' ideas baffling. At the school where I teach the new Reception children start the same days as everyone ele, full time, with lunch, end of story. I can't undersyand all the faffing around of going different days, mornings, afternoons, no lunch etc. No wonder the poor children get confused and uptight!

EustaciaVye Fri 05-Sep-08 17:50:53

My DD starts on Monday too. The build up seems to have gone on forever. She had a few wobbles a couple of weeks ago so I stopped talking about it. We've mentioned a handful of times about how other people can be shy/shouty etc (like she may find at school) and she may do this or that (like at school) but havent talked about it in depth. She seems a bit more chilled out.

I would not mention it again until Monday. Then explain she will do 3 weeks parttime or whatever...

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