TRANSITION to SCHOOL
Starting school is a significant event in your family life. While it is a very exciting time for you and your child at times it can also be a very anxious and emotional experience. By the family and school working together at the transition phase we want to alleviate some of these anxieties.
Getting to know the environment
It is a great idea to bring your child to the school to pick up siblings, attend school functions or during the weekends to start to become familiar with the environment. They can play on the playground, get to see the buildings, talk about what room they might be in and start to get to know the ‘place’
This is an exciting hands on transition opportunity for children who are just about to turn five. Students are invited in for two afternoons and one morning in the weeks prior to starting school. For the afternoon sessions they arrive during the lunch hour so they can have lunch in the playground with the other students and then they join in with afternoon classes. For the morning session they arrive before school starts, with the other students and stay until lunch time.
By joining in with our students they get to know the faces and places of our school and also have a lot of fun! Once a child is enrolled these visits can be booked in.
School uniform is compulsary at Greta Valley School (please refer to School Uniform Policy). Stocks of school polo tops and polar fleeces (both monogrammed with school logo) are held at school and can be purchased from the school office. Navy track pants, nylon pants, shorts or culottes can be purchased from The Warehouse. Stocks of these items are not held at school.
School bag and lunches
When purchasing a school bag for your child...go big! They need to be able to pack all their belongings safely inside - this usually includes a lunch box, drink bottle, book bag and warm jacket. It is difficult for them to carry everything if it doesn't easily fit into their bag. Ensure that lunch boxes and drink bottles are easily opened and named.
We work very hard to create a welcoming and positive environment for your child. It is important that the child sees the teachers and principal as someone they can trust and who cares for them. We encourage parents to reinforce this philosophy of open relationships and welcome you to talk to us about any concern. We really value your feedback!
On the first day
The class teacher will talk to you about what the first day will entail for your child, well before the day gets here so you can start discussing this together with your child. This will help them feel confident in knowing what will happen on the day.
The school bus
For the first few days you may like to arrange to travel with your child on the school bus or have them travel only one way initially. We will encourage a big buddy (senior student) to look after them on the bus.
Helping Your Child with a Confident Start to Learning
Often parents ask "What should my child be able to do when they start school?'
All children start at different places in their learning, you can help your child off to a good start by...
• Reading to your child daily, talking about the characters and ideas in the story,
• Sing songs together
• Have fun with rhymes and jokes
• Give simple instructions to follow, e.g. how to pack their school bag
• Identify pictures in books, magazines, on television or the internet
• Have your child ask and answer questions
• Encourage your child to draw and talk about their experiences with you and at playgroup.
• Encourage your child to join in conversations with a range of people
• Practise drawing, scribbling or writing with pencils, crayons, paintbrushes on paper or with sticks in sand
• Write numbers and letters
• Take photos of things your family does and write stories together to give to family members, take to
• Always have paper around to draw / write on, even a special drawing / scrapbook.
• Recognise and write their name, with a capital at the start of their name and lower case letters for the rest
• Encourage your child to talk about numbers using words such as many, a lot, more, less
• Help them to find things in a group that are different, or the same, such as shapes or colours
• Talk about opposites
• Involve your child in everyday counting activities such as setting the table
• Count everyday objects around the house.
• Match numbers to objects.
• Talk about shapes in your environment.
Personal and social skills
• Organise times for your child to play with other children so that they can learn to share and take turns
• Encourage them to tidy up after playing
• Help them to learn to say their full name, address and phone number
• Make them aware of rules and the reasons for having them.
• Encourage them to be independent and have a go at things themselves.
• Help them to hold scissors and cut and paste pictures
• Encourage play with building blocks and puzzles
• Let them play at the park
• Play hopping and skipping games
• Encourage your child to move and dance to music
• Talk about your experiences together.
Teaching and encouraging independence helps to develop a 'can do, have a go' attitude which develops a sense of ownership and responsibility. Encourage your child to...
• Pack and carry their own bag
• Tie up their own shoe laces
• Dress themselves
• Toilet themselves
• Blow their nose
• Cut paper with scissors
How can you be involved in the school?
Children love to see their parents and carers at their school, whether helping out in the classroom, helping with class trips or being involved in other ways. Research shows that students perform better at school when their parents or carers take an active interest in their school work.
Your contribution to the school is needed and valued.
Ways you might get involved:
• Help in the classroom
• Listen to children read
• Help children on computers
• Help with school excursions
• Coach a sporting team.
Join a committee
• The Friends of the School (FoS) is involved in making decisions about the school and how it spends the funds it raises. If you can’t get involved in the FoS meetings you can get involved in the things they organise for the school, such as social events and fundraising.
• The Board of Trustees consists of parents, teachers and the principal. They play an important role in making sure that the whole school community is involved in decisions made about the school.
Prior to Starting School
Get organised at home
• Write your child’s name on everything!
• Make sure you have the school’s phone number.
• Make sure students are fully trained in toileting.
The night before the first day
• Lay out your child’s clothes, shoes and socks.
• Make your child’s morning tea and lunch and pop them in the fridge.
• Help your child to pack their school bag.
The first day
• Be confident about the first day with your child.
• Let your child dress themselves as much as possible.
• Tie back long hair or plait hair.
• Apply sunscreen and take a hat.
• Take photos!