Starting Kindergarten: What I Wish I Knew Then…

The Willows School
  • It takes time for your kid (and you) to make friends at a new school
  • Cliques look better from the outside. This goes for kid and parent cliques
  • If your child is having a rough start, don’t be too hard on yourself or leap to conclusions about the school
  • If things are going really well, be prepared for some ups and downs, which are inevitable
  • Don’t try to take on too much volunteer work the first year
  • Ignored, rejected playdate requests happen to almost everyone; its not personal!
  • Perspective, perspective, perspective!

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Christina Simon: Los Angeles, California, United States I'm the mom of two kids who attended The Willows School in Culver City and Viewpoint School in Calabasas. My daughter is a graduate of Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism ('23) and my son is a sophomore at UPenn/Wharton ('26). I live in Coldwater Canyon with my husband, Barry, and our dogs. Contact me at

8 thoughts to “Starting Kindergarten: What I Wish I Knew Then…”

  1. Great points all! I’ve learned the hard way what to volunteer for and what not to. My favorite is to volunteer for things that have me at school, near my kids. Thanks for the reminders!

  2. Great advice for starting any grade in elementary school. We are having an adjustment period right now and it isn’t even my kids’ first year at school. I agree with your take on playdates. I sometimes take playdate rejections too personally, but I know I shouldn’t. It’s nice to hear other moms experience similar feelings.

  3. Great tips Christina! Sometimes I think the mommy clicques were worse. And it’s no wonder how their daughters became that way too. But, I do think you’ll see that at public school too. Good point about the playdates. Don’t take it personally, especially when you start to realize that some of the moms are into social climbing for themselves (and their kids!) and only want to associate with a certain group. Ah…so glad I’m not there anymore.

  4. Thank you so much for this post! My daughter just started school on Thursday and it’s been a little rough for her with separation, making friends, etc. It’s really reassuring to hear that things will eventually get better.

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