Getting Ready for School
Getting ready for school checklist
Getting Ready for School
Starting primary school can be daunting for you and your child, but it marks the start of an exciting new chapter. Before you know it, your child will be making friends, learning new skills, and becoming increasingly independent.
This is a great game to play with your child before they start school. Help your child create his/her character and pick a school jumper, then explore the school and find all the different activities to play.
Support your child’s independence
The most useful thing you can do to get your child ready for school is to make sure they are comfortable doing simple tasks by themselves. This includes:
- Going to the toilet. It is better to get your child into the habit of doing this for themselves.
- Getting dressed. Avoid clothing with fiddly buckles and buttons. It is also a good idea to have a few dry runs with the PE Kit!
- Putting on shoes. Tie-up shoes might be a bit difficult. Go for shoes with Velcro fasteners if possible.
- Eating. This includes using a knife and fork, opening their lunchbox, and being able to open everything in the lunchbox (some yoghurt tubes and drink cartons can be tricky).
- Solving simple problems. Encourage your child to resolve problems by talking when they don’t understand or something isn’t going well. It is important that they also learn when to ask an adult for help.
Build up your child’s social skills
Learning in a classroom is a social activity. Children learn and develop by playing alongside their peers, and they will make better progress if they are happy mixing with other children and adults. You can encourage this by:
- Organising play dates. Play dates with children from your child’s new class help improve their social skills and makes the leap to primary school less scary – they will like knowing one or two of their classmates before school begins. Virtual meet-ups can be useful too.
- Practising greetings. Your child should know how to start a conversation with their new classmates. You can use dolls and soft toys to practise saying “hello”!
- Practising conversations. Giving your child time to talk – and also having time when they have to listen – teaches vital speaking and listening skills. You could take turns to talk about the best part of your day during dinner. Can they ask questions to find out more? Can they remember their sibling’s favourite part of the day?
- Encouraging sharing and tolerance. Sharing games such as Snakes and Ladders let children practise social skills and turn-taking. Be sure to use the language of turn-taking, like ‘Whose turn is it next?’ and ‘Thank you for waiting’.
Visit the Oxford Owl website for more ideas on how you can help your child get ready for school: Activities to help your child get ready for school.