Read our latest news
It’s that time of year again - preparing our children who will be starting primary school, only this year it’s very different for us at Little Crickets Pre-school.
We are usually preparing our children for their transition times, our staff team supporting our families as best they can as families prepare for their children’s move on to primary school, or moving from our Little Explorers room (2-3yrs) to our Little Detective room (3-4years) for the upcoming academic year.
We offer support as best we can to meet each families’ individual needs, such as those who are going through the process for the first time and those who like myself are going through the process for the last time and grieving as your last ‘baby’ goes to school; or parents who will be eager for schools to re-open and start their new life as ‘you again’ and not just Mum/Dad for at least the hours of 9-3 five days a week!
One thing that remains the same year-on-year is helping our children feel safe, secure and happy during this time. Whilst it is just as much an emotional time for our dedicated staff team as it is a happy one, we communicate with our local primary schools the individual personalities of who we have grown to love and care for each and every day as if they were our own.
By this time of year we have enabled our children’s natural curiosity and desire to learn so they can proudly move on to the brilliant teachers of Rossett Acre, Coppice Valley, Oatlands, St Peters, Grove Road, Pannal and Beckwithshaw schools (to name a few) to continue their learning journeys.
During this uncertain time we do not know the future of timings for school, however with all transitions the following remains the same:
Try to see things from your child’s point of view. Understanding how children see the world will help you to help them as they learn.
Let children be children. A skilled five year old grows from a busy four year old, a curious three year old, a cuddled two year old, an adventurous one year old and a communicative baby.
Be a playful companion. You can enjoy childhood with the children as well.
Feelings matter – both the children’s emotions and your own are part of any situation with young children. It is very helpful to be aware of your own moods as well as the children’s when enjoying yourself with them and during difficult moments.
Don’t expect to be perfect. Everyone does something they don’t mean sometimes. Children can be forgiving as long as we are thoughtful most of the time and are ready to say sorry when we should.
(Learning together series - Early Education 2011)
During this challenging period take each day at a time. Not only can change be a worrying time for families it is also an exciting one!
We try to remind parents that sometimes where the children are going will be a completely new environment to them. At present they may only be familiar with their current setting, or they may have been going to school as a sibling since the day they were born - we’ve had full on excitement in our household as the this is us! In September I will have one child in year 5 as another starts reception and has been wanting to join her big brother at school since she could talk, and although we will be going through as much of the grieving process of our last baby going to school we are full of excitement with what the future holds for our future life with primary schoolers - and for just two whole years only one place to drop off/pick up!
Transition strategies can help lower any anxiety in both adults and children.
Talk positively about where they are going to go. Children pick up on our emotions too and although we would encourage them to talk and name emotions they may be expressing, some children may only be aware of happy and sad right now.
Try to only inform children of the facts not using if/buts/maybes as when they ask questions this prevents upset later on when they may say “but you told me...” for example at a school with a two class intake if your child asks “Will Johnny be in my class?” You can answer with “Johnny will be at your school but they may be in (teachers name) class or in (teachers name) class but you will still see them every day at playtimes and lunchtimes to play with”.
Look at pictures of the school/teachers that your child will be seeing. Most schools now send out this information to you and at this moment in time I am aware that schools are trying everything to run things as smoothly as possible.
Focus on your child’s independent skills! Please remember that your child is soon going to be in a class of 30 children and may only have a class teacher and one teaching assistant in the classroom. Encourage your child to go to the toilet, independently wiping themselves and washing/drying their hands. Your child will be required to dress/undress themselves for PE and zip their own coat up. Your child will also need to be able to use a knife and fork correctly to feed themselves their lunch.
Read read read! Your child needs to be able to focus for a short time, read stories to your child daily and ask them questions about what they can see in the pictures, can they tell you what they think may happen next or how the characters might feel? Can they suggest a different ending for the story?
Talk talk talk or use other communication tools your child uses. Just like the reading giving your child plenty of opportunities to talk about what you are doing, during board games taking turns and building on your child’s listening and attention skills required at school when playing with their friends in the playground or listening to the class teacher.
Finally talk to us, we may be currently only open for key worker families but we are still here to answer any questions via telephone or email do not hesitate to get in contact. Your chosen school may have also already reached out to you with contact details if you need to discuss anything if further detail prior to your child starting school.
For further ideas and resources to support school transitions please click on the links below
Written by Rebecca Vass - Pre-school Manager