How Can I Help My Child Before He/She Goes to School?
Encourage your child to make choices. Three choices are sufficient for a preschooler. If you do not want your child to wear shorts in January, then do not have them in the drawer.
- Motivate your child with praise when they do things like taking turns, waiting for a turn or putting things away. You can encourage these things at home as well.
- Zipping, buttoning etc. are skills that will come out of necessity of taking care of oneself in the classroom setting. You do not need to push your child. They will want these skills as they see older children doing things by themselves. Guide your child by letting them know that you think they are capable, competent human beings. Sometimes they need to be told “I know you can handle it”. One of our favourite quotes “Help me do it by myself”.
Beginning School; A Few Important Comments on Readiness
Academic readiness is not an issue. Your child is not on trial. Whether they can count, identify colours, or write their name is not the focus. The Directress is interested in the whole child and their ability to communicate, co-operate and most importantly your child’s willingness to accept and master new experiences.
Try not to frighten your child by making comments such as “You better learn your colours before you go to school”.Coming to school is a big step along their developmental journey; try not to intimidate them as they take this step.
- If you must change your child’s routine (ie. getting up earlier), try to do this before the first day of school. Try to get your child comfortable with any new routines prior to beginning school.
- The night before school, help your child lay out their clothes for the next day. Lay them out so the child can get dressed when they wake up. Please ensure clothing is of a style that the child can manage independently.
- Eat a leisurely breakfast. Give yourself enough time so you do not need to be rushed. Try to sit and chat with your child in a relaxed manner.
The Great Departure
After many years experience, we have found that it is best for the child if the parent simply say a calm goodbye, give a little kiss and assure the child that they will be back.
Try not give a long drawn out goodbye. This expresses to your child that you are apprehensive and concerned for him or her. They might interpret this as “I should be worried too”.
Try not to stand around chatting with friends/other parents in view of your child.
If you are ever worried – call the school. If your child cries when you leave, allow our compassionate, experienced staff deal with it. If your child continues to be upset for a length of time we feel is negatively affecting him/her we will call you.
Try to be on time when you pick up your child. Even if you are a few minutes late, the child can interpret this in many undesirable ways.
After class many parents ask their child what they did at school today. In most cases the children do not have the language skills to describe what they did. A better phrased question might be “Did you have fun at school today?” or “What did you enjoy most about school today?”
Children, for the most part, feel that school is different and they behave differently than at home. They are becoming civilized members of a small community and that entails great effort, and sometimes stress when first adjusting. Therefore, the children need sensitive listening when they come home from school and a chance to let down. They may be over tired, but too overstimulated to take a nap. On the other hand, some children may be so tired that they fall asleep as soon as they arrive home.
Children are not thrown into individual learning situations initially. They learn grace and courtesy. They learn basic practical life skills (ie; pouring, tucking a chair in etc.) so their concentration and coordination can build. We begin with the prepared environment in his or her community.