28 Aug School Readiness: Before Starting School
There’s a real mix of information out there when it comes to school readiness!
So let’s try to make it clear about what is important leading up to school.
To get this right, we have decided to go directly to the NSW Department of Education and review what they have to say about getting your child ready for school!
For more info: download, read, and print this document:
What does the NSW Department of Education recommend for the year before starting primary school?
If your child attends an early childhood education service, talk to the staff about their transition to school.
Contact your child’s centre: https://integricare.org.au/our-locations/.
Feel free to discuss with teachers and educators about your child’s readiness for school. Our teams are trained professionals who can guide you in the right direction on your child’s next steps!
A great way to discuss this is to book in a parent meeting with the teachers/educators at the centre your child attends.
Attend a school orientation or transition to the school program and make sure you have the school’s phone number.
When enrolling at a school, the school should let you know their transition to school and orientation options.
At Integricare, we run a transition to school program at all of our centres. Local schools have highlighted how our programs have supported children to move into primary school as individuals who are developmentally ready, confident, and eager to learn!
Remember that in some cases, schools will request that your child ALSO attend their transition program leading up to school.
This is because the school’s tailored program will help them learn about specific information for their new school and assists with settling/orientating.
If unsure, always contact your local school.
Take your child to your local community health nurse or doctor for a health check and make sure their immunisations are up to date before school starts.
Here is a link to show local community health services in NSW: https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/kidsfamilies/MCFhealth/Pages/health-services-map.aspx
Here are some important developmental milestones for children https://www.acecqa.gov.au/sites/default/files/2018-02/DevelopmentalMilestonesEYLFandNQS.pdf
If you feel something isn’t right or you have concerns regarding how your child is tracking, do not hesitate to talk with the team at your child’s centre as well as with their nurse/GP.
If your child takes medication or has an allergy, a medical condition or additional needs, inform the school as early as possible and make an appointment to speak with school staff.
This is important as it helps to make sure the school can work to best accommodate the needs of your child.
Further information from Autism Spectrum Australia regarding Aspect Schools: https://www.autismspectrum.org.au/how-can-we-help/going-to-school.
Aspect can link you up to learning and classroom environments that are tailored to the needs of students on the autism spectrum.
Apply for a school Opal card if needed. Go to apps.transport.nsw.gov.au/ssts or phone 131 500.
Remember young children will need to be taken to school with an adult.
Children under ten years old should always be closely supervised and children eight and under should hold an adult’s hand when in the traffic environment.
Organise outside of school hours care.
There can be waitlists for this, so the earlier the better! If unsure what options exist, contact the school in which you are enrolling with your child.
Practise safely walking with or travelling to and from school.
This helps to support your child to become familiar with the commute. Doing this a few times, helps them to understand and build confidence.
Remember: Children eight and under should always hold an adult’s hand walking or transporting to school!
Encourage self-help skills with your child.
This includes independent toileting, hygiene, dressing, recognising their name, and packing their belongings into the bag.
Remember schools are busy places, so the more self-help skills your child has, the easier it will be for them to follow the new school routine.
It’s OK to step back and guide children through new skills!
Remember independence will allow them to spend less time stressing the small things and rather be engaged in deeper classroom learning.
Continue reading to your child.
Reading is so important in the early years.
The more words a child is exposed to in the early years will support stronger outcomes with their future reading, writing, and literacy skills.
Find your local library today: http://www.nla.gov.au/apps/libraries
Connect with other parents and carers on social media.
This is building a sense of connection and community for your family. It also can help to keep you in the loop about any news and events at the school!
If unsure of what pages to join, we recommend contacting the primary school your child will be attending!
Don’t forget to check out all the fantastic learning and development happening at our centres throughout Sydney!