I found the best way to deal with this was to arrive promptly at school pick-up with a fruit snack, scoop him up and take him home for a cuddle and a story. I also ensured that we kept to our regular routine so that he didn’t feel as if everything was changing. Because he was so tired, I tried to foresee what may escalate into a temper tantrum and give him extra space before an explosion. I would also tell my child about my day and what the younger siblings had been up to – as long as it wasn’t too exciting.
When your child is a young school starter be confident about talking to the headteacher about how many hours / days he has to be at school and don’t allow yourself to be pressurised by the teachers. I also stopped all after-school activities. Your child will not be disadvantaged if they don’t do swimming / ballet / football during their first year of schooling.
One thing that caught me by surprise was that when my second child Sophie started school, my first child, James was very difficult and unpleasant to her. He felt that school was his territory and she was invading his space. I spoke to James and explained that they shared school and also empathised with his feelings and tried to help Sophie understand why James was being so grumpy. Mums are good negotiators!
Image provided by Terri Heisele