The school pickup required a little bit of planning, apart from getting there on time (I have an alarm in my phone) you also need to make sure any less than school aged children are clothed, clean and ready to go when the time comes.
Be prepared with some food stuff for the walk home as kids are always hungry and there’s nothing worse than hangry kids after school.
When you get the kids be sure to ask lots of questions about their day, prompt them with ideas,”Did you paint today?”, “Did you do maths?”, “Sports?”, “Reading?”, Etc. This simple act will encourage them to openly talk about their day, the good and the bad.
You’ll get to know their social group during pickups, often they’ll give friends the final goodbye and you can ask who that kid was? Are you friends? What did you do with so and so?
The friend thing may also result in play dates where they may come to yours or yours may go to theirs. This can ultimately result in expanding your social network, albeit amongst other stay at home parents.
When you get home ply them with some food, attempt homework if they have it and encourage independent play with their siblings. If they have no siblings use this time to play with them yourself, this can be another opportunity to share stories from each of your days, they will often be just as interested in your day as you are in theirs. By being open with your day your setting an example that says it’s ok to talk about this stuff, and I’m interested in it.
School pickups can be great ways to get information from your kids and connect even more, this is the kind of stuff that will build long lasting memories and relationships with them.