Anyone else w/entering kindergarten anxiety, yours not dc's? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 02-04-2005, 07:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Anyone having kindergarten anxiety - yourselves, not your children? I gotta tell you, I am a wreck, and ds will not start until the fall. He is in his second year of preschool (3 mornings a week), and loves it. Overall he does pretty well. We are just figuring out some allergies, which definately impact his ability to function at school. His preschool teacher is amazing & has been a tremendous help to us. Ds has has come a looooooong way. He now functions at an age appropriate level, but does have a harder time than a lot of the kids w/paying attention & calming himself.

In a nutshell, here's what I am worried about:

1. Kindergarten here is full day. I so wish it were half day, such a more logical progression. I am not sure how he will hold up w/that much stimulation & structure. And I can't imagine him being away all day.

2. A new teacher. I worry that she will not understand the allergy/behavioral connection & that he will be punished for this.

3. We had a very bad experience at our town elementary school a couple years back (before we learned of the allergies & ds was getting some special ed. services). I am really concerned about this repeating itself. We are in the lottery for a charter school, which I think would meet ds's needs so much better. But, if we don't get in........

4. The bus! I'm sure every mother goes through this one, but the thought of just sending him on the bus, on his own, terrifies me. How will he make it to class? What if he gets lost? All that stuff.

Really, I'm not an over anxious parent. But due to ds's special needs, I find myself being much more protective.

OK, (deep breath) any words of wisdom? BTDT? Valium?

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#2 of 5 Old 02-05-2005, 12:29 AM
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My oldest started kindergarten this past fall. I was really nervous, too, since he was moving from an ultra-supportive autism preschool to a less structured environment. The transition meeting answered a lot of my questions, but still didn't alleviate my worries. (They should be scheduling a transition meeting for your son in April or May if he is in Special Ed. -- of course, they should have been reminding you about it at every IEP, too.)

Everything has worked out well for my son -- a few bumps along the road, but overall, the stress was all mine. We have a great local school, and I started getting involved last April -- going in to observe, talking to people on the phone, etc. (nothing too intense since they weren't ready to give me a lot of attention, but enough so that I had rapport established with the important people before school started). And although I resisted using the bus until October, it has turned out to be one of the best things ever for my son (if you want more details, just ask -- I'm trying not to give you more info than you want).

All that said, I spent months prior to the transition feeling as if I was either going to pass out or throw up, so I have sympathy for your feelings now. (All three of my kids have special needs and my daughter started preschool on the same day my son started kindergarten -- believe me when I say I understand the stress) Keep taking deep breaths and coping as well as you can -- and let me know if I can tell you anything helpful.

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#3 of 5 Old 02-07-2005, 10:29 AM
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I'm already to cry and my dd doesn't start until the Fall, but I register her tomorrow . What is good so far is that the bus stop in right in front of my house and she will be in the afterschool program, so she won't ride a bus home. The school is right beside my job and I would pick her up from there. Also, she has been going to speech therapy at the school, so she is pretty familiar with the surroundings. She's been at a day care center for over a year so she's pretty structured and has handled the changes there well. And from all that I still get a lump in my throat when I think of her going to Kindergarten.
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#4 of 5 Old 02-08-2005, 08:28 AM
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Don't start with Valium!! I think your feelings are so normal for what you're going through. I'm wondering if you could get more exposure to the school so you can begin to "picture" your ds in this setting. Most k-gartens will let a parent visit and observe (you could do that this year while there are other children in there). See what the teacher's style is and how it will mesh with your child. Most k-gartens also have a visiting day for the children. Our district also has a bus ride for the kids and parents prior to school. I think all of this is just as much for the parents as the kids!! You may also want to think about volunteering for the school, as a room parent or something else. This seems to help most of us make the transition. I think talking to other parents who are going through it, especially in person in your district, is also a great tool for getting through it sanely. My experience with the full day program is that they really don't do anything very demanding after lunch. In our district they had quiet time and then a bit more gentle academics before it was time to go home (which of course begs the question, 'why do they need to be full day' but that is another topic!!)

I don't have much experience with the allergy issue, but they surely have to be responsive to your educating them on this. I hope you can make headway with this. I know a family with a daughter with a serious peanut allergy, and it is very stressful for them when she goes out and about, including school. (By the way, check out the new Allergy forum here at MDC in Health and Healing)

It is hard, and I always shed a few tears on the first day for my little ones. We all get through it somehow, and our children are a lot more resilient than we are, usually.


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#5 of 5 Old 02-08-2005, 05:07 PM
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I have a little anxiety because my son is ready to be in Kindergarten, now, and he doesn't turn 5 until October. I can test him in, and I know that they will think he is ready, but what if there is some little part of him that I don't know about that isn't ready? What if he gets mad at me later because he can't drive when his friends do?

He has been in preschool for two years and he is really ready to move on. Most of his good buddies went to K last year.

I started school early, and it was great for me. I never had any issues with it. I just hope it is the right choice for my son. I am 90% sure that it is, but that last 10% is haunting me a bit.

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