Ways to prepare your child for school
- Read story books and nursery rhymes to your children every night. Tell them about the connections and understanding that you gained through reading the story and ask them questions to check their listening. Talk about any new vocabulary in the story.
- Build phonemic awareness, knowledge and skills - being able to hear, identify and manipulate sounds is an important early reading skill. For example, being able to separate the word 'cat' into 3 distinct phonemes c-a-t is an important early skill for students to develop. It is also important for students to identify rhyme in words.
- Help your child practise writing his/her name properly – beginning each name with a Capital Letter eg: John, Smith. Your child should know his/her first and last name, address, age, gender and relationship with family members.
- Help your child practise packing and unpacking his/her school bag properly so that he/she becomes independent.
- Ensure that your children can use the toilet, flush the button and wash their hands themselves or let the teacher know if there are special circumstances in this area.
- Please be aware of speech issues your child might have and seek an assessment or draw it to the teacher’s attention.
- Help your child to develop an understanding of colours, days of the week, how to use scissors and holding a pencil correctly.
The change from Pre-School to a full formal school day, five days a week, brings many pressures to bear on small children, some of whom find it very difficult to cope, especially in Term 1. You may find your child becoming teary, tired, clingy etc. This is quite normal and will pass with time. You can help your child settle into school by observing some of the following suggestions:
- Ensure your child’s name is written clearly on all detachable articles, eg. clothing, shoes, lunch boxes and drink bottles and that his/her name, address and phone number is on the inside of his/her school bag.
- Talk to your child about the difference between “crunch and sip” and “lunch” and practise opening up lunchboxes and drink bottles. Only fresh fruit or vegetable is to be eaten at “crunch and sip” time, not ‘snack packs’ or fruit in jelly.
- Try to give your child the amount of food that you know they can eat. Please provide a water bottle with waterproof cover to bring into the classroom so your child can drink frequently in the hot weather.
- Kindergarten children often get very tired and feel the strain of being part of a large group. You will notice this particularly towards the end of each week for the first few months. It is helpful if your child can go to bed early.
- Send an explanatory note to the class teacher whenever your child is absent from school, is taking medication at school, there is a change in normal routines (eg bus travel) or needs to leave school during the day. If your child is being collected by a relative, friend or After School Care, please provide a note stating this as we have a duty of care regarding these processes. In an emergency, parents can phone the school administration office.
- Begin to build a relationship with your child's teacher. Consistent communication in person, via a letter and/or email will help to form the strong and positive partnerships we feel are a vital part of our school culture and have the biggest impact on outcomes for students. Appointments can be made through the school office or through the school diary.