Parents and children don't need to worry about first day of kindergarten, educator says

Brandon Paykamian • Jul 22, 2018 at 1:28 PM

In less than three weeks — Aug. 6 — students at both Washington County Schools and Johnson City Schools will begin their first day of the 2018-19 school year. For some, this will be their first taste of a public school environment as they enter a kindergarten class for the first time.

North Side Elementary School Principal Sharon Pickering said the first day of school can often be an anxious time for first-time students in kindergarten, but parents can prepare them for the first day by helping them establish consistent evening and morning routines, reading with them every night, buying school supplies with them and visiting the school beforehand to help them navigate and get comfortable with the building.

“Start reading with them every night to get them in the habit of asking questions about the stories,” she said.

“And if they can get a chance to visit the school, that can help the students know where to go to get to the bus and to get familiar with the school.”

But the first day of school isn’t just hard for students, many of whom cry when they realize their parents are leaving them for the first time. It can be hard for the parents, too.

Pickering said parents can trust that teachers and counselors will help students deal with and adjust to the stress of the moment.

“It's still a transition for kids, and some of them will be anxious. A lot of parents can walk them in and get them settled, but it's a good idea to move on and let them get settled. Teachers and counselors are good at helping those kids that are really upset,” Pickering said.

“Kids always start getting more comfortable in the first couple weeks; they start to learn and trust the environment they’re in.”

Registration for Johnson City Schools students began in April, but parents can still register their children as soon as possible, so long as parents bring the proper documents, including birth certificate, Tennessee Certificate of Immunization, a copy of your child’s Social Security card and proof of residency and address. For more information on registration at each city school, visit www.jcschools.org.

Registration and screening at Washington County Schools will be July 24, from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the Asbury Family Resource Center, 2002 Indian Ridge Road. For information, call 423-434-4923 or 423-753-1100 or email teachercenter@wcde.org. For an appointment, call 423-434-4923. More information can also be found at www.wcde.org.

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