Children and families arrive and parents/carers and siblings are encouraged to spend time with the children before separating for the day. This is a great time for parents to meet other families. It also helps the child to settle as they see how relaxed and comfortable the parent/carer is and this in turn makes the children feel comfortable.
Parents will be prompted (via a gentle reminder, often music) when it is time to go. Though there will always be children, especially younger ones, who will find the separation from their families a little upsetting at first, we have experienced almost no ongoing problems with settling children as a result of this relaxed start to the day.
This time of the preschool day is also a great opportunity if parents need to catch up with a teacher to discuss their child's special needs for that day. For instance if the child is unsettled due to a previous illness or a parent being away, etc. This information helps staff support the child as they may need a little extra help or attention during their day.
Once the parents leave, we have a quick transition time to welcome children and talk about the day ahead.