Dad Hugs Crying Son

Learning to Say Goodbye

When it comes to saying goodbye to your toddlers and preschoolers, it is not always an easy time. Your children can feel stressed, scared, unhappy and that doesn’t make it any easier for the parents to say goodbye and leave them behind when they are feeling so sad, scared, upset, etc. So we thought we would put together a few tricks and ideas to make these goodbyes for the day a little bit easier!

Here are 7 ways to make a goodbye easier!

  • Teach your child what to expect.

Make sure you take the time to explain to your child what will happen when you are gone at work. Let them know what their plan is here at The Learning Tree! Lucky for the parents there are lesson plans outside every classroom! So the parent can easily grab one and explain to them how they will have breakfast, small group, outdoor play, lunch, etc. throughout the whole day.

  • Remind your child when you will be coming back

Make sure you let your child know a time frame when you will be coming back. This can also relate to the lesson plans by letting them know that during outdoor play after lunch is when you will be back or after you take your nap you will play with your friends for awhile then I will be there. Give them something to look forward to and help them know that you will be back soon.

  • Let them take a favorite blanket or toy

Allowing them to bring their own blanket or toy can help them feel like they have something from their home. Having something that feels familiar to them can help ease the unsure feelings they may be having.

  • Make sure you tell your child that you are leaving… don’t just disappear

It is SO important to make sure not only do you tell your child that you are leaving but you make sure that they hear you… do not just disappear without them knowing. This will help your child develop the security she needs, and it will make the goodbyes easier in the long run. If you fail to them them and they think you are just gone, they may start to panic.

  • Keep your goodbyes short and sweet

By giving your child a quick hug and kiss and leaving right after it leaves less time for them to panic and get upset. Having a friend close or an activity nearby can also be helpful. Long goodbyes can make things very difficult on your child.

  • Keep your goodbyes in a routine

It is important to follow a routine. If you leave your child everyday with having the same goodbye each time it helps them know exactly what to expect and eventually helps them feel more secure.

  • Make sure to call and let your child know if any plans have changed

This one is SUPER important… make sure you call every time your change plans and make sure the director lets the teachers know to let the child know! If you are late or the plans have changed your child will become to feel unsure and become upset. But by staying in touch it will help build this trust between parent and child.

By following these 7 tips during a goodbye it can make saying goodbye SO much easier. And this isn’t just easier for your child, it is also easier on the parents… no parent wants to sit at work all day wondering if their child is still upset or looking for them!


For more of our daily updates at all 5 of our centers, check out our Facebook pages!