All kids develop at different rates and putting them in school before they’re ready can make them stressed and anxious. To make it even more complicated, each state in Australia has a different minimum age cut-off date for when a child must start school. We’ve got some tips on getting your kids ready to start school in 2017.
For children starting school for the first time
In Queensland, compulsory schooling starts on 30 June in the year they turn 6. In other states, such as Victoria, if they turn 5 by 30 April they can start school. But their age doesn’t determine school readiness. Even though society has its own rules about when a child needs to start learning, some kids simply aren’t ready and need to grow at their own pace. It’s more important that they’re calm and happy with whatever stage they’re at. It also depends on the school culture as to how well kids adjust to a new environment.
What skills do they need?
Parents can also help their children be better prepared for school with an awareness of the life skills they need before they start. Here are some things you can help them with to get them ready to keep your anxiety (and theirs) at bay:
- Learn the alphabet
- Write their name
- Sharing toys
- Using a computer
- Feed and dress themselves
- Finish activities independently
- Be active
- Engage in activities with other children
- Listening and being quiet when asked
One of the best things you can do is to encourage play in all forms, whether with siblings or other children. This builds social and emotional competence.
Every year technology becomes more and more a part of daily life, and this is reflected in schools. iPads and tablets in particular are popular for younger kids, while laptops are common in grades 7 and above.
Building your child’s digital competence is going to help them in the long run. If you’re not ready to commit to buying a new technology, or the upfront cost is too much, you can always rent technology to help them become familiar with it.
Preparing for the big day
A child’s first day at school is a big occasion and they will have plenty of concerns about what will happen. You can help ease their fears by:
- Familiarising them with their school by walking or driving past
- Attend a settling in day to meet the teacher, see the classroom and meet classmates
- Encourage playdates with potential classmates if you know the parents
You can ease your own fears by:
- Teaching them about stranger danger
- Using an app to track them
New initiatives to be aware of
Coding along with maths and science, will be made a priority in primary schools from 2016. This is based on the Government initiative to “future proof the nation’s economy and its workforce”; If your child shows aptitude for technology at an early age then you’ll be doing them a favour by encouraging this.
MacRae Rentals has a range of technology to hire for your home from computers and tablets, to Smartphones and game consoles. Give us a call today on (07) 3356 0343 or send us an online enquiry to find out how we can help get your kids technology ready!