Tips for Starting Preschool....
How Preschool may first appear to a child.....
(a) A new world with exciting things to do? A new world rather bewildering and frightening so that their desire is to get away from it as soon as possible?
(b) Pleasant companions with whom to share experiences? Strange children who are overwhelming in their rush of movement, loud voices and exuberance?
(c) A friendly teacher whom the child feels they can trust? An unfamiliar grown-up whom they regard with suspicion and with whom they will need time for her to prove her reliability and friendly support?
Some children see it one way, some another, but all need understanding and support when they first begin.
How can parents help to make this new world a happy place for their child?
Before enrolment, but after you know that they will be accepted, talk about it casually but optimistically...."You'll be going to Beacon Hill Community Kindergarten soon. There are interesting things to do there". Or "Your friend ......... goes to the Kindergarten so you'll be able to play together when you go too".
DON'T EVER use the Preschool or the teacher as a threat eg; "You won't be able to do that when you go to Preschool". But also don't build it up so that it sounds like a combination of Christmas and birthday party.
Walk past the Preschool when the children are playing outside. Attend orientation morning in October/November with your child. Find out if anyone you know is attending so you can arrange play dates prior to commencement.
Don't hurry them. Be prepared for a child to be hesitant and reluctant for you to leave their side. The more you try to push them off to "go and play with the other children", the more afraid they will be that you are going to abandon them. The result is that they will cling to you harder than ever and it will take longer for them to feel safe and ready to enjoy this new world which has so much to offer them.
It is a big step for a little child to leave you in a strange place, and the more sensitive they are the more they will feel it.
Always say goodbye to your child and their teacher and say that you will return. Never slip away when they are engrossed and don't notice you have gone. Ensure that you farewell them so that your child may build trust in the fact you will return.
Ready for Big School......
* You are your child's first teacher!
* Preparation for school begins at birth.
* Parents can assist with their child's development in the early years by talking to, reading to, playing with, singing to and loving their child.
* Quality early childhood education and care makes a difference!
* A quality early childhood program has an emphasis on play-based learning, recognises the importance of communication and language and is concerned with developing children's social and emotional development.
* Children may enter Kindergarten at the beginning of the school year in NSW Government schools if they turn 5 on or before 31st July in that year.
* By law, all children must be enrolled in school by their 6th birthday.
* Your decision to start your child at school or to spend another year at preschool should take into account your child's social and emotional development over your child's academic ability.
* Talk to your child's early childhood educator for advice in relation to your child's readiness for school.
* You child will participate in a Best Start Interview at the beginning of the year that they start school.
* The Best Start interview is not a test. It provides teachers with valuable information which supports quality teaching and learning in Kindergarten classrooms.