family on-boarding

New child visits

Depending on a child’s temperament and transition style, we usually recommend they have between 1 and 3 transition visits and spend partial day(s) in the classroom prior to the official start date. It helps them get used to the dropoff procedure. For instance, if a child seems anxious at dropoff, we may recommend that parents bring them in 2 hours per day for 3 days in a row before their official enrollment date to establish a consistent dropoff routine. We recommend families start care at least a week before they really need it, so there is some flexibility during this important time.

First days

Because enrolling a child in a new program can be overwhelming, we ask you to be especially communicative with families who are new to First Circle. Those early communications set the tone and quality of the relationship with the family. The director will facilitate the transition of a new child into the classroom as based on the needs of the family and child. If appropriate, you can assign the new child a “buddy” to help them acclimate.

All educators in the classroom should prepare for a new child. Before the child’s first day, educators must:

The more welcoming you are to the new child, the easier the transition will be for the child, the family, the classroom, and you.

Consider the child’s previous childcare experience. If the child has been at home with the parent or caregiver, the transition time might be longer or more challenging. If the child has been at another program, the parents may need to adjust to a different set of policies and ways of doing things.

On the child’s first day, take a picture of the child engaged in an activity and send it to the parents in Engage to show how well they are settling in.

The more time you invest in the relationship with the new family at the beginning, the easier the relationship will be. Make sure you spend quality one-on-one time with the child and observe regularly to see how they are adjusting to their new environment and classmates. These observations will help you provide specific stories and anecdotes to the family at pickup. You can also provide or suggest a phone check-in during the day to ease anxiety. Touch base with the family to ask how the transition is going to gain further insight and to show your support. Encourage them to talk to other parents in the classroom. Ensure every new child and family feels welcome.


During a child’s first few months at First Circle, Admin is in frequent contact with the family to discuss whether their child is transitioning smoothly and whether we are meeting their expectations. We encourage families to express their opinions candidly to help us assess the strengths and weaknesses of our program. We will share all pertinent information with individual staff or team(s), as appropriate.