Three arty ideas for helping your little one to settle at school or nursery.
How’s life treating you? Gently, I hope.
This morning, as I made my way through the school gate, I saw a mum leaving, head down, walking quickly. She was clearly on the verge of tears. She had just left her child, screaming and crying because he didn’t want mummy to leave.
My heart went out to her. I suffered with her, as I remembered similar experiences of my own.
I’m in this situation too. My little one is settling into reception class. I’m currently trying to manage the leg-clinging and pleas of ‘don’t go mummy’.
But I have to, as I’m settling in too.
I have a new full-time job.
I’m the Content and Social Media Executive at the Creation Station.
Let me introduce myself, I’m Becky – a mum to two incredible boys. My background is working in children’s TV at the BBC. I was fortunate enough to work on Blue Peter for six years, creating makes, booking celebrities, and filming videos. I worked with all kinds of guests from jaguars to JK Rowling.
I feel very lucky, after moving to Devon a few years ago, to have finally landed on my feet at The Creation Station. I’m looking forward to using my talents to help inspire and nurture your child’s potential.
Three top tips
If like me, your child is going through a settling in period, it may be helpful for your child to explore their feelings, while doing some simple arts and crafts. We’ve come up with three ideas to help children connect with emotions they may not be able to express in words.
These activities work well if you focus on process, rather than the end result. It may be helpful to purely describe what you see, rather than comment on whether it’s good/bad.
- Get it down on paper
Provide your child with plenty of paper and old crayons or pens. Ask them to draw a picture of how they feel when mummy has to leave school or nursery. Don’t be precious about the crayons or pens. They may make holes in the paper, tear it into pieces, scribble hard, stub the nibs and break crayons. Alternatively, they may draw a picture of a sad heart, depending upon their feelings.
- Set them free with clay
This is particularly useful if you have children that hit or bite other children at nursery or school, as they struggle with settling. Ask them how they feel when they want to hit or bite. They may feel the need to squish clay – hard. They can pinch, snip, tear and pummel the clay. Because of the resistance clay has, it’s a great material to use for this type of activity.
- Snip it up, stick it down
If your child can use scissors, they may want to snip up paper, lots of it. This paper can then be used for gluing to create a picture that shows how they feel about school drop off.
These may not be art and crafts for display, but they’ll allow your children to explore and discharge feelings they otherwise may not express, helping them to be happier and settle in faster.
If you’d like to find out about local classes, holding an arty party or attending a Creation Station event, send us an email or leave a comment below.