If your child is going to be riding the school bus for the first time, it is important to teach them what to expect and get them familiar with the route. This will help to ease their nerves and make them feel more confident about travelling without you.
Visit the bus stop
One of the best ways to help your child feel more comfortable about riding the school bus is by visiting the bus stop before they begin their new routine. By watching other children using the bus you can help to settle your child’s nerves and possibly your own too! Visiting the bus stop will also ensure that you are familiar with the route and the exact journey time to get there.
You can also make arrangements to collect your child from the bus stop or practice the journey at the weekend to help ease your child’s worries.
Team up with a travel buddy
Having a friend on the bus can also help your child to feel more relaxed. Speak to the teacher and see if they have organised a ‘travel buddy’ system. You may be able to find out in advance who they will be pared with, or arrange for your child to sit with a particular friend if they are feeling anxious.
Discuss safety rules
Before your child begins taking the school bus, it is vital to discuss safety rules with your child. Explain the importance of wearing a seatbelt, staying seated when the vehicle is in motion and talking quietly. It is also important that your child is aware of ‘stranger danger’ and knows road safety rules. Especially if they will be walking home from the bus stop.
If your child is worried or upset about travelling to school without you. It is important to discuss their concerns and reassure them. Let them know that there will always be an adult on board and they can talk to the driver if they have any safety concerns.