Thank you to all the caregivers for taking time to enter the contest and give feedback to our early learning team!

If you missed any of the previous five weekly emails, or just want to check back on the information shared, copies of all messages are available on the Division website: Preparing for Kindergarten email series.

As promised, we have a bonus email with additional social-emotional resources. Kindergarten is a big transition, and we know it can be tricky for some children.

Caregivers often ask: How do I help my child be successful in managing their emotions? Babies usually express their emotions in big ways—for example, crying and screaming. As caregivers, we naturally work to recognize the needs our babies have—hunger, hot, tired, scared—and then try to meet that need to help them get calm again. As children grow and gain language, we start to expect children to control those big emotions by themselves. We do want children to be successful at this, but some children need more time and coaching to practice this. Calm and caring adults who are both kind and firm help children gain the skills to regulate emotions and learn important boundaries. Also, let’s face it, we all need someone to help us with our emotions from time to time!

We also have our own feelings to manage, and it’s always OK to ensure our children are safe and take a break when we need to. Children need our help, but it’s important they learn to recognize the whole world can’t always stop when we have a feeling or need—it’s about finding balance.

Our partners at Strathcona County have created a video series aimed at exploring many of the feelings starting school may bring and how to support your child when having them. The resources, produced by Strathcona County’s Family Resource Network and Mental Health Capacity Building team, are for you and your child to watch together. They talk about all different kinds of feelings—both feelings that are easy to have and feelings that are hard to have! You’ll also meet the Kimochi® characters that will help navigate some of the feelings your child might have about starting school.

Preparing for Kindergarten: Emotions
There’s a lot in this document, so take your time and explore it throughout the summer!