Each month, Jackie Hardie, owner of The Nursery, gives advice and guidance on aspects of parenting. Drawing on almost three decades working with early years children, including roles as a Reception teacher and an Ofsted inspector, running an international education consultancy, and of course, being a parent, Jackie gives down-to-earth and practical advice.
This month, Jackie focuses on starting school.
With September just around the corner many children will be starting school for the first time. Reception teachers do an amazing job of focussing on developing self help skills but the more you prepare your child, the easier the move to school will be.
At playtime children will need to find their own peg, locate their coat and then navigate the garment so it is the correct way up and the right way round! Of course the teacher and assistant will be around to help, but most children will be in a class of 30 so the more independent your child is, the easier and less stressful it will be.
At The Nursery we work with the leavers to ensure they are prepared to start school. The following strategies may help the transition to school:
Children need to make connections with people to help them feel secure, so having a picture of your child’s teachers and teaching assistant will help them become familiar with the adults before they arrive at school. Many schools have photographs of the staff on their websites.
Buying the uniform together will help your child get excited about going to school. Hang it up together in their room where your child can see it and become familiar with it.
It is really important to use the summer to help your child develop independence in a few key areas. Recognising their own name, hanging up their coat, zipping up their coat, putting their shoes on the correct feet and using the toilet will help them be more prepared for starting school.