At Little Hands, we work tirelessly to ensure that children develop the skills they need for their next stage of learning. When supporting children transitions to school, we encourage them to be independent, resilient, kind towards their friends, have the ability to form strong relationships with children and adults (to name but a few). We took this opportunity to find out firsthand how effective our school transition process is by asking a previous family about their own experience.
How did Little Hands prepare your child to go to school?
There was always a focus on independence and a love of exploring different situations. My little boy has loved going to school and has gone in every day with confidence; something I feel he gained from Little Hands.
What skills did your child learn whilst with Little Hands to promote school readiness?
He learned how to dress himself – coats, jumpers, shoes etc. All of which, he needs to be able to independently do at school. He also learnt skills such as holding a pen and, most importantly, being kind to others. He has been able to make new friends and interact in a positive way with staff.
As your child has now started school, what do you now wish you would have known about the school transition process?
I wish I had known more about the lack of information on a daily basis. At Little Hands you find out what your child does each day, how much they eat and have a strong insight into their day. At school, particularly in the current situation, it’s just a quick pick up with little interaction with staff. I spent the first few weeks trying to find out as much information about his day as possible.
How did you promote school readiness with your child at home to prepare them for school?
We practiced getting dressed in his uniform and putting on his school shoes by himself, as they are so different to the shoes he was used to. We also practised re-filling his water bottle independently. In addition to this, we focused on being able to write his name and recognising numbers. We also discussed about how to make friends, how to introduce himself to new people and join in with the games other people were playing (he has gone to a school with no one from nursery so had to start from scratch with relationships).
How has your child settled into school?
He really enjoys school and has settled well – he is always happy to start the day and is excited to go every day.
How did Little Hands support your child’s emotions in preparation for school?
There was a strong focus on kindness to others which has helped him to make new friendships quite quickly. He also struggled with being left when he first joined the pre-school room but the staff at Little Hands went above and beyond to encourage him to have a happy start to the day – Sandie, in particular, was amazing at providing activities that interested him and allowed him to feel happier at being left for the day. It completely showed the level of care that my little boy had, as Sandie knew him so well and how to make him feel happier. As much as he found mornings difficult, I never felt bad about leaving him at Little Hands as I knew he was so well cared for.