School readiness is described in the foundation stage as “Children reaching a good level of development in the prime areas and literacy and mathematics”. However, school readiness goes much deeper than this; a school ready child should be displaying many other characteristics.
|✔ be prepared to be separated from their parent or main carer.
✔ be able to identify themselves by name and age, and to name family members etc.
✔ be able to interact in an age appropriate way with another child or adult.
✔ be able to vocalise their needs such as toileting, thirst, hunger illness etc.
✔ have enough vocabulary and language to express their needs, feelings, thoughts or ideas.
✔ respond to boundary setting.
✔ be able to interact, share and play, taking responsibility for their actions and understanding consequences for their actions.
✔ be able to clearly demonstrate their ability to listen and follow age appropriate instructions.
✔ show an interest in a variety of subjects, paying attention to the subject or activity they are taking part in.
✔ focus on and also show interest in the work they are undertaking.
✔ be able to observe, notice, discuss and ask questions about their environment and experiences.
✔ be able to engage with books, have some understanding of words and language.
In the lead up to starting school, the following activities can be helpful:
- Increase your expectations of your child around self-care tasks such as dressing, toileting, eating, and getting ready to leave the house. Provide encouragement rather than physical ‘help’ to complete the tasks where possible.
- Read books together to prepare your child for literacy lessons so they learn to sit through the entirety of a book.
- Practise cutting, colouring, drawing, and writing their name will enable participation in activities much more easily and willingly.
- Walking past the school may be helpful to familiarise your child with the new setting or visiting places such as the library to help your child to understand appropriate behaviours in these environments.