In the year before your child starts primary school, you can begin to focus on different aspects of school life. Having discussions about school and encouraging your child to become more independent can help them better adjust to the new learning environment.
Things that you can do to help your child prepare include:
- Asking your child what they think about school.
- Encouraging your child to ask questions about going to school.
- Encouraging your child to do things on their own, such as dressing, washing their hands, going to the toilet, unwrapping their food and opening their juice bottle.
- Talking to friends and other families about what school is like.
- Talking to the school about how you can be involved in your child’s life at school.
There are a range of things you can do to help your child have a successful and stress-free first day at school including:
- Helping your child to pack their school bag with a snack, drink and lunch.
- Label all belongings and find out where lost property is held at school.
- Put sunscreen on your child in the morning if it is needed.
- Leave home on time allowing time to say goodbye. At first, you may stay a while to ensure your child feels secure, but once they have settled in, a short and reassuring goodbye encourages independence.
- Show your child where you will meet them at the end of the school day.
- Check what time school finishes and arrive in plenty of time to collect your child.
- At the end of the day talk to your child about what happened at school.