Recently I started sending my son to a new children’s morning out program. He’s at the age where the separation anxiety kicks in a soon as he realizes that I’m dropping him off. The teachers are great and they are used to dealing with the kids’ tears, and gently nudging the guilt ridden parents out the door, assuring them that everything will be okay.
To help get the kids through those rough patches the staff suggested getting crafty with your kid and putting together something they could bring that was familiar and comforting. I wanted to share this with other parents because it’s a great tool and loads of fun to do with your little one.
For our project, Nolan and I made flashcards of his favorite things…toys, objects, best stuffed friends…the things that always bring a smile to his face. We spent the afternoon running around taking pictures of the “besties”.
I kept it simple. I used some 4”x 6”photo paper I had stuffed in a drawer collecting dust, added a tag in a kid-friendly font and printed on the old inkjet printer. To hold the flashcards, I used a 5”x 7” craft paper envelope and added some text in the same font.
Well, the cards were a hit. As soon as he saw them the tears stopped. He kissed the bunny picture, described the images, made their sounds…Even better, they got the attention of the other kiddos in his class and helped distract them from drop-off time.
Since then, I’ve pulled these out at restaurants, the grocery store, in the car…whenever I need to interrupt the impending tantrum and tears. For me, keeping it simple worked best. As favorite things and vocabulary grow we add to his collection. We take a quick snapshot, throw the picture into the template and print off another card of the things my little guy loves.