The day your child starts school is a momentous one indeed and there are many ways in which parents can help make the transition from pre-schooler to school pupil a happy and smooth one.
Be factual about what will happen at school. If too many glowing accounts about school being fun, play, freedom and joy are given the child’s reaction may be one of disappointment. If, on the other hand, too much emphasis is given to discipline, rules, and restrictions, the attitude may be one of apprehension.
Here are some ways by which parents may help their children prior to starting school:
- Talk to your children, give them plenty of opportunities to express themselves. Read a story/stories daily. Repeat nursery rhymes and songs together.
- Count with them at every opportunity, counting actual things as often as possible, instead of counting abstractly.
- Help children recognise colours.
- Encourage them to dress themselves. It is helpful if they can have learned or be learning to fasten buttons, zips and tie shoelaces. r- Familiarise them with using scissors, crayons, pencils.
- Help them to recognise their own name in printed form by printing it for them (first letter only in capitals). This is the first word they learn to read.
- Give your child some special chores around the house that are their responsibility to encourage their independence.
- Encourage your children to take care of their belongings.
- Ensure they know the route to school (both ways); let them practise while you watch.
- Make sure they know the road rules and can recognise the school patrol.
- Make them aware of the danger of talking to, or going with, strangers.
- Tell them what to do if they get lost. Make sure they can give their name, address and phone number.
- Make sure a little boy is acquainted with a urinal.
- Bells are noisy! Now their life is ruled by bells. Tell them what to expect.
- Prepare your child for having lunch at school. Pack a lunch and let them eat it outside. Encourage them to eat sandwiches first, then fruit and biscuits.
- Be enthusiastic about everything your child does at school, and show interest in and praise for their efforts. When they begin reading, ask the teacher how you can help at home and remember that success for your child can be materially improved by your help and encouragement.
- Above all, let children know that you care about what they are doing, and the love and security that you give will be repaid handsomely.
It is important to us that your child is happy and satisfied at school. If you have any worries or concerns about your child’s happiness or progress at school please don’t hesitate to contact your child’s teacher or the Principal.
Please also remember to bring in the various permission and medical forms, filled out (see below).