Information regarding Prep Enrolments is covered on our general Enrolments
In this section, we are sharing some hints for the families of new Prep students, to help manage their transition to school.
Preparing for School
It will help your child if you prepare them as well as you can and at the same time, show them that you have confidence that they will manage the new challenges.
Many school routines will be unfamiliar to your child, but there are some that you can practice at home together in the time leading up to the start of school.
- Eating a healthy breakfast
- Dressing in a school uniform
- Putting on school shoes
- Packing and unpacking school bag
- Doing hair and cleaning teeth
- Experimenting with lunch variations (will some food be too messy at school?)
- Opening own lunchbox, unrwrapping contents and opening containers
- Leaving the house to get to school on time
- Driving or walking past the school and talking about it
- Walking across a pedestrian crossing safely
- Asking to go to the toilet
- Going to the toilet on their own
- Drinking from a water fountain
- Saying good morning to a teacher
- Putting their hand up to ask or answer a question
- Hearing the school bell and knowing what it means
- Recognising their own name on labels. Ask your child to help you label all of their belongings. Children can become very upset when they think they have lost things. This will help them identify what is theirs.
Useful Skills for Prep
Below is a list of skills that will be useful for children starting Prep. We recognise that not all children will have these skills as everyone develops at a different pace, so this is only intended as a guide so that starting school may be just a little easier.
Encourage your child to attempt the things mentioned below, but don't worry if they can't do all of them.
Language Learning and Communication:
- Talks to other people about familiar objects and events
- Answers and asks simple questions
- Makes needs known
- Follows simple instructions
- Uses books for enjoyment or for looking at pictures
- Identifies pictures in books, magazines, television or video
- Draws, scribbles or writes with a variety of objects such as pens, pencils, felt pens, paintbrushes, sticks in the dirt.
- Joins in singing familiar songs and nursery rhymes
- Write their own name
Early Mathematical Understandings;
- Recognises that numbers can be used to count
- Uses words such as many, a lot, more or less
- Identifies things in a group that are different
- Sees differences in shapes and sort objects
- Differentiates between opposites - up and down, under and over, in front and behind, day and night.
Social and Personal Learning:
- Uses the toilet independently
- Can say own name and address
- Adapts to unfamiliar settings and new experiences
- Can finish a task, and tidy up afterwards
- Plays co-operatively with other children, shares and takes turns
- Can sit still to listen to a story for a few minutes
- Is curious about the world
- Can share an adult's attention with several other children
- Participates in imaginative play
Health and Physical Learning:
- Uses scissors appropriately
- Enjoys a variety of indoor and outdoor play
- Can put on and take off jumpers, shoes, socks independently
- Makes and designs things using a variety of materials.
When School Starts
When school begins, please make sure your child aware of the procedure you will follow for pick-up time in the afternoon. Let them know where you will wait for them. It is best to try to maintain the same procedure each afternoon, as young children become stressed if they are confused about pick-up arrangements.
Children are often very hungry after school. If you are picking up your child in a car after school, a piece of fruit can be a perfect solution.
Some children will want to tell you about their day immediately when they see you, but many will be happy to continue with life's adventures! Children will talk about their day when they are ready. Bedtime is usually a good listening time.
If you want to ask your child questions about their day, try asking descriptive questions such as "What stories did you listen to today?" - you are more likely to get a detailed answer.
It helps if you read stories to children even after they can read themselves. Bedtime is also a good time to read stories.
Some children wet their pants in the early months of school. This can be embarrassing for them. Please reassure your child that this happens from time to time and that there is nothing to worry about. Encourage your child to tell their teacher. Pack a spare pair of undies in their bag for emergencies. If you show you are worried, it will make them feel worried as well.
Don't expect too much. New learning takes a long time and all children learn at different rates. Help yopur child by encouraging them, taking an interest and showing you care.
Be flexible and patient in the early days of school. Children may be tired and grumpy for a while until they settle in.
Keep routines that allow time to rest and free play. Don't arrange too many after school activities or have too many things to do on the way home.
Some children get upset if they haven't learnt to read on the first day. Remind your child of all the things they CAN read, such as their name, road signs, and names on food packets and signs.
Invite your child's friend over for a play.
If your child is really upset or you are worried about any issue, please talk to the teacher about it.
Before the first day:
To make the first day of school enjoyable, there are a number of things parents should be aware of:
- An enrolment form must be completed and returned to school.
- Documentary proof of birth must be produced. Children cannot be enrolled without this document or documentation.
- All items should be clearly labelled.
To help overcome unnecessary anxiety, we suggest that children possess all necessary books, stationery and uniform items they need before the first day.
On the first day:
Prep children will commence school on the same day as the rest of the school and complete full days from 8.55am to 2.55pm. Arrive at school as close to 8.50amas practicable so you don't have a long waiting time before school begins.
Ensure your child knows exactly what to eat for munch and crunch, lunch and afternoon tea.
Ensure that your child knows exactly where you are going to meet after school or what going home arrangements are.
Take your child to the classroom and leave your child with the teacher. Don't be upset if there are a few tears - it is quite natural for your child to experience some fears. Children settle down quickly when their parents or caregivers leave and they become involved in the activities in the classroom.
Expect your child to be tired and irritable after school for a week or two or even a term. They will be having a very full day at school.
Once your child is familiar and comfortable with routines, he or she may walk to the pick-up zone to wait for you or older siblings.
Beginning at a new school can be a little bewildering for small children. There are new adults to meet, new friends to make, new rules to learn and new places to see. Children usually settle quickly into the new school situation and positive attitudes expressed by you and family help a great deal.
If you have any further questions, you are always welcome to call the office.