Thank you to all of the parents that were able to make it. For those that couldn't, here is a summary of what we covered.
First we asked for some feedback about what was going well so far.
This is what we got: people have been enjoying Rising 5s, our transition to school, how children are making friends within our class and the use of praise and incentives to keep motivation up.
We asked for feedback for ways we could improve the start to school. We really appreciate the feedback.
Some of the suggestions included: having buddies with older students, having more visits to school before children start and having more "real" class activities during Rising 5s.
Next we addressed questions.
The themes: people were a bit uncertain about homework and the role parents play in that, reading at home, how kids learn to write and how friendships are encouraged.
Our responses: Fortunately, some of the suggestions are things that we already do!
- We have got senior buddies who come in a few times a week to do buddy reading and writing with our new children. This has proven to be really helpful for children when on the playground because they know some of the big kids around!
- Children starting school are invited to attend Rising 5s afternoons for 2 terms before they start and can make a minimum of 2 school visits--more visits are welcome if you feel your child needs it and all you need to do is come see us.
- Rising 5s is our developmental discovery time in which we have a variety of activities that we do have out during normal class time as well. School visits provide more guided instruction.
- Homework shouldn't be stressful! We are trying to encourage reading--this can be done by reading together, being read to or children reading to you.
- Other homework includes exploring and practising their rocket words--these are high frequency words--and we encourage trying to do this in fun ways--chalk, shaving cream, glitter.
- Here is a link to the presentation we shared and it includes more information around early literacy in the classroom: Early Literacy Presentation Link