Or at least that is what it may feel like if your child will be starting Kindergarten next school year.
Children turning 5 years old seem to come back to preschool after Winter break completely different people. It is a phenomena we see every school year. The shy child breaks out of their shell and is a chatty Cathy. The complaint child becomes a rebel.
What the heck is going on?
It seems that children start receiving some strong messages about going to Kindergarten when they return to preschool after winter break. For some children this seems exciting. For others it is terrifying. It is best to keep conversations about going to Kindergarten as matter a fact as possible. As parents, if we make too big of a deal and hype it up too much, it can be a real let down when school starts in the Fall.
The other reason I think we see this change, is children are reaching a peak in their developmental levels. I would describe this as, things start to click. Almost every children will arrive at the edge of their early childhood developmental levels by age 8 and be ready to charge forward into the next level of development.
So Hold on Tight, this ride is going to get more exciting!
The good news is that most children settle into a character similar to the preschooler you remember in a few weeks or so.
Just remember to see this change as an opportunity to support them and listen for clues to any questions or concerns about kindergarten. The Rebel might be trying to verify they will still have control. The newly discovered Extrovert might not want to be forgotten or left out. This transition to something called “kindergarten” is an unknown for them all.
If these changes are causing aggression in your child, it is time to dive deep and figure out what underlying reason is causing that emotional response. For more information about dealing with child’s anger, you can read our post: Anger! Control in Children.
How is your child reacting to the start of Kindergarten?