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Getting ready for your child's first day back at school

June 3rd, 2020
Getting ready for your child's first day back at school
The first day at school can be both exciting and stressful for parents and children alike. Many young children will be going to school for the first time in September and whilst that seems a long way off, there are things that you can be doing with your child to ensure that their first day is not too daunting and that their self esteem and confidence will help them through.

As well as ensuring that all the necessary uniform and equipment has been bought in good time, it is so beneficial for your child if you can teach them some of the many basic skills that they will need during their first weeks at school. I the weeks leading up to school it is well worth ensuring that their manners are at their best and that they fully understand the concept of sharing as this will soon be put to the test at school!

Can your child write their name?

Reading and writing will be the biggest skills that your child will learn in the years to come so why not help them to feel justly proud that they can recognise and write their own name? Teach therm how to do so with an upper case letter for the first letter of their name and lower case letters for the others. Teach your child using a soft lead pencil (HB) or a colouring pencil.
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Do they know their colours?

Children love colours and it can be great fun to get them to pick out different colours whilst you are out on a walk. A splash of vegetable food colouring in the bath water will make them laugh and play dough in a selection of three or four colours will prove fun. After they have mastered the basics, you can show them how each colour has a variety of tones and you can encourage them to describe the colour too you in the most creative way they can!

Are they confident of the alphabet?

This is quite a lot for a child to learn but can be made fun using an alphabet book or poster. There are some fun songs and videos to help too, but don’t worry if they find it difficult, the important point is that they know about the alphabet and have their favourite letters!
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Can they count to ten?

Most children love to learn to count especially if it involves singing! There are lots of fun songs that involve counting toes and fingers and children love to check that adults have the same number of each too!

Can they dress themselves?

It is a good idea if the clothes you buy for their school uniform are as easy as possible to slip on and off. It might take time for your child to master buttons. They may well need ‘L’ and ‘R’ to be written on the soles of their shoes for a while! Make sure they can get themselves undressed and dressed easily as there will be occasions at school when they will need to do so.

Is using the toilet difficult?

This will be another skill that is well worth finely tuning as your child will be expected to use the toilet at school on their own. Make sure that they can manage their clothing well and that they do not need to be prompted to wash their hand really well.
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Can your child interact well with others?

This one will definitely take time to develop, but it is essential that your child understands that they must share things with others and that they cannot hit another child in order to get the toy they are holding. Try to teach your child to be kind and thoughtful and about the stand off that can occur if they express an interest in a toy that another child has – tricky!

More than anything else, talk with your child often about going to school and what it will involve and involve them in any decisions about such things as the colour of their new school bag – they will feel very important!
In the months leading up to their first day at school, make sure you spend plenty of time together doing the special things you enjoy.

Chrissie x

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