For a smooth transition for each child, Seeds follows a concept developed by educators in Germany based on the “Berlin model.” This method is proven to support a secure and trustworthy transition.
How does it work?
Typically, the transition period takes a few days and up to 2 weeks, depending on the individual needs of each child. It's important to bring your child regularly to the kindergarten during the transition period.
It is also ideal that only one parent completes the transition with their child to provide consistency. If it must be done with different parents, please inform your child in advance about who to expect to see throughout the day to help them feel secure.
The parent needs to stay for the first day to help your child feel comfortable and safe in the new environment. Sunflower children (ages 2-3.6) will begin with a half-day on the first day until 12:00pm (no nap time) and Bumblebees, (ages 3.6-5.6) may stay for the full day with one parent.
If the child is ready, separations will begin on the second day, ranging from 20 minutes to 1 hour. Kindly understand that because it’s a new environment, new faces, new routine and for some, a new language, that it will take some patience the first weeks to settle the children.
What is my role as a parent during transitions?
Since the child is unfamiliar with the teacher and the environment, the support of their parent is necessary for the child to engage in the routine. During the transition, it’s the parents' role to encourage their child to listen to the teacher by following the teacher’s instructions, joining the activities and exhibiting prosocial behavior. It's important to repeat what the teacher says to your child and model the expected behavior.
In the beginning, it's also helpful to play with your child during the morning free play so the homeroom teacher has the opportunity to play together with the parent and child - this way the child realizes that they can also trust and play with the teacher.
Once the child feels more comfortable, the parent may slowly step back and allow their child to explore and play on their own. After the parent steps more in the background and the child feels secure enough, we will begin separations.
When there is a separation, the parent needs to communicate to their child that they are leaving and coming back later. To hear this from the parent is fundamental for your child to build trust and security with you and their teacher. The parent will then leave the kindergarten and remain accessible. It's expected that the child may become upset when the parent leaves. During this time, a Seeds team member focuses on calming your child and bonding with them.
Each day, the time of separation increases until your child is securely separated for a whole day. The separation times can be discussed in advance with the homeroom teacher and all further steps of transition will be discussed individually.
Once transitions are completed, children enter the classroom at the door without their parents as it's crucial to follow the same routine of children observing parents coming and going. As they watch other children entering the classroom easily, it reassures them that they are safe and can do the same.