Helping a Shy Child Adapt to Daycare

Helping a Shy Child Adapt to Daycare

Being shy may be cute in a child’s first years. But when it is time to venture out into the world without the parents’ presence and support, that shyness can become a problem. Children become more adept in handling social situations as they grow, but if the shyness does not fade away, then the pressure on the child and the psychological stress it causes can be a major factor in her development in future years.


Shyness Is Normal
Some amount of shyness is normal. In fact, many researchers think that a little shyness is a good sign, indicating that the child is naturally cautious in dealing with the outside world. In fact, there is research available to show that it can be a sign of maturity – the child evaluates a situation in her own time before deciding to become a part of it. However, when the shyness affects normal social interaction, then it is excessive.
Preparing a Shy Child for Daycare
Starting daycare is always a difficult experience, even for the most outgoing and confident of children. For the shy ones, it can be an extremely stressful one. There are certain things parents can do to help a shy child adjust to daycare.
  • If possible, try to find a friend who will also be starting daycare and sign them both up for the same one. Having a known face around will relieve some of the pressure.
  • Get the child to practice interacting with other children and adults. Make it a game and have the child take others on a guided tour of the house or help others place their orders when eating out. 
  • This will help the child understand the ebb and flow of conversations and develop the ability to make herself clearly understood to non-family members.
  • Take the child to places where there are noisy crowds – a ball game, an amusement park and so on. This will give her the chance to get used to being in a crowded and noisy environment and will help her learn that there is nothing to be scared about.
  • Take the child around the daycare before she actually starts going. This will allow her to enter familiar surroundings on her first full day there.
  • Be sure to say goodbye – do not sneak away thinking it will be less stressful. Say goodbye and make it clear that you will be there to pick her up when daycare is over. Make sure that you are not late.
The Right Daycare Is Essential

Shyness is not a serious problem in young children. However, if they are not encouraged in the right way to emerge from their shell, the problem can attain serious proportions in later years and into adulthood. Making a shy child feel at ease in the company of others, including people who are being introduced for the first time, requires input and support not just from the parents, but also from the daycare. This is the first external environment that a child encounters without the support of parents or other family members. If you are not happy with the way your daycare is dealing with your shy child, look for another that will be more helpful and supportive. The best way to do this is to use an online resource that will give you the details and the contact information of the daycares in your area so that you can check them out to find one that is right for your toddler.

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