Doing things for the first time, as a first time parent, without other parent friends who have experienced it first, is daunting and overwhelming. Starting Kindergarten was no exception. Part of this years chaos layer is the pandemic and not knowing when, how, and what school would look like until days before.
But the other part of Starting Kindergarten in Canada is most likely familiar with families across the country. It’s been four months now, and I’ve learnt a few tricks and these are things I would tell you.
Buy multiples of all the personal things – did I really need two lunch boxes? I could just wash it every night…. no, you might just have a day, where that doesn’t happen or you forget to press the wash button on the dishwasher, and then you slept in and then just … it just doesn’t happen. And seriously, these PlanetBox lunch boxes are the best thing I ever bought because they have lasted years of abuse and are so easy for my kids to use
All those things you have to bring home at the end of the day, and return the next day – buy multiples.
2. Send a spare change of clothes – it was the after school care lady who recommended to me that I ensure he always has socks, undies, and pants in his bag for just in case. I put all of his clothes in a wet bag and this way when he drops his backpack in a puddle, his clean clothes are dry. You can really use any wet bag, but check out the selection at Lagoon Baby in Canada.
3. Yes, you need outdoor weather gear, and multiples – your kindergartener is going to come home soaking wet because he rolled down every hill in his snow suit, and no matter how amazing your winter gear is, he just doesn’t know how to get the snow pants into the snow boots without also bringing home a bucket of water. It’s just going to happen.
Buy a second pair of snowpants, multiple pairs of gloves, and a second set of winter boots.
They spend all day outside, no matter the weather, so warm kid is a happy kid.I also found a dryer thing for the outdoor gear is also handy.
4. Labels – and labels for everything. Order labels as soon as possible, and keep them at the front door for constant restock and supply. We loose hats and gloves, but thanks to labels we can find them… sometimes. I like to keep my labels at the front door so that when seasons change and a new pair of shoes appear, the labels are easy to find and access.
I use Mabels Labels for most things – even dishes, and they have been amazing. I even have a label on the wet bag which gets washed regularly.
Things I still don’t Know
It’s been four months… and I still don’t really know a lot of things about Kindergarten.
- Am I supposed to stand at the door for drop off? When can I drop and run?
- How do I check report cards?
- Am I supposed to be writing a note every day?
- Do I call in, or is really better to wait for the secretary to call me?
- What does his school look like? That’s a COVID thing and I’ve never been inside the school building.
- Does he have friends? He doesn’t talk to me much when we get home.
- What does he do during the day?
In Sum, I have learnt this year that you just need a lot of things to survive kindergarten – and you’re going to loose at least one pair of gloves before the end of November.