As the school season starts here is a gentle reminder of the importance of clear parent-teacher communication, along with kindness and patience. Parents and teachers are under new stresses these days. From the fears of covid to financial uncertainty.

Clear communication first and patience with each other as you work toward the best situation for your child and all the children at the school are essential.

Children arriving at preschool are generally at a different level socially (and sometimes cognitively and with motor skills) than they were before the pandemic. This requires extra care from teachers and extra patience from parents if there is a problem.

I recently spoke to teachers at several preschools. All reported that three-year-olds are regularly showing a lack of social skills. In particular it is common for them to act more like two-year-olds using physical actions like pushing, hitting, and grabbing to get what they want instead of words to ask for help and waiting for a turn.

Remember the most important think for preschoolers to learn are social skills. A child who has been kept away from other children and gatherings of people in general due to the pandemic may not have been able to develop these skills. Working/playing well with others and understanding social norms is the work done before heading off to elementary school so those teachers can focus on higher level learning.

Bottom line – if you have concerns about issues at a preschool, or if you are just more prone to worries in general lately, do let your child’s teacher know. Be specific and if you want some kind of feedback, discuss with the teacher when and how that will happen. Be aware this is a difficult time for many families and teachers have to care for all the children so be patient and kind. Realize that to care for your child and the other children well, a teacher needs to be focused on the children and not on you. Clear communication often handles situations before they become a problem. Preschool is still a wonderful time for children and meets both a child’s need for socialization and playmates.