Starting Kindergarten

Kindergarten is an important year of schooling as children formally begin to develop their literacy and numeracy skills. Our whole school community will help your child adjust to school and help them to feel comfortable.

When to start school

Your child can start Kindergarten at the beginning of the school year if they turn five on or before 31 July in that year. By law, all children must be enrolled in school by their sixth birthday. In recent years, there has been a trend for parents to ‘hold their child back'.

When to start your child at school is an individual decision. You may want to discuss this with us or with your child's preschool teacher, carer or doctor. When you have decided to send your child to school the following year it is important that you contact the school as soon as possible. This way you ensure you are kept up to date with the orientation program and processes and are given any important information.

Preparing for Kindergarten

Before your child enters Kindergarten you will need to have done the following:

  • Completed an Enrolment Form and provided your child's Birth Certificate, Immunisation History Certificate and two items for proof of residence to the Office Assistant.
  • Ensured that the Emergency Contact Information is accurate.
  • Notified the Office Assistant of any special needs or requirements for your child eg medication.
  • Filled out a Bus Application Form (if required).

 

Parents/caregivers can do a lot to help prepare their child for Kindergarten before the big 'first day'. Below is a list of skills that will be useful for children starting Kindergarten. We recognise that not all children will have these skills as development occurs at different rates, so this is intended only as a guide so that starting school may be just a little easier.

Encourage your child to attempt the things mentioned below, but don't worry if your child cannot do all of them. Talk to the Kindergarten teacher, and together you can support and assist your child's learning.

Language

  • talks to other people about familiar objects and events
  • answers and asks simple questions
  • makes needs known in a polite way
  • follows simple instructions
  • uses books for enjoyment or for looking at pictures
  • identifies pictures in books, magazines, on television or video
  • uses a variety of things (pens, pencils, texters, paintbrushes, sticks in the dirt) to draw, to scribble or to write
  • joins in singing familiar songs

Mathematics

  • recognises that numbers can be used to count
  • uses words such as many, a lot, more, less
  • identifies things in a group that are different
  • sees differences in shapes
  • differentiates between opposites - up and down, under and over, in front and behind, day and night

Personal/Social Skills

  • uses the toilet independently (including the urinal for boys) and washes hands after use
  • can say own name, address and phone number
  • adapts to unfamiliar settings and new experiences
  • can finish a task, and tidies up afterwards
  • plays cooperatively with other children - shares and takes turns
  • can sit still to listen to a story for a few minutes
  • is curious about the world
  • can share an adult's attention with several other children
  • participates in imaginative play
  • is able to follow rules and directions

Physical Skills

  • uses scissors to cut along a straight line
  • enjoys a variety of indoor and outdoor play
  • can put on and take off jumper, shoes, socks independently
  • is able to open lunch box and contents
  • eats and drinks without help
  • makes and designs things using a variety of materials

These are basic skills and important in developing confidence and independence for children in their new environment.

 

Developing Independence in Children

During your child's time at school they will be encouraged to develop confidence and independence. As they progress through their school years the expected level of independence increases.

Some suggestions for assisting the development of independence in the first year of school are:

  • Allow and encourage your child to carry his/her own school bag.
  • Give your child the responsibility of packing his/her own school bag. Initially check verbally that he/she has everything.
  • Encourage your child to dress him/herself, including doing up shoelaces.
  • Ensure that your child arrives at school in time for the morning bell and that he/she lines up with the class.
  • Once your child has settled into the routine of school encourage him/her to walk to class lines alone.
  • Encourage your child to return any notes to the teacher by him/herself.

 

Kinder Information Night

Once you have contacted the school and returned all of the relevant paperwork you will be invited to our Kindergarten Parent information night in Term 4. This will be your chance to talk to find out how the "Getting ready for school" program works and ask any questions about the starting school process.

 

Getting Ready for school Program

Our orientation program involves 4 weekly sessions where your child comes to the school to visit the kindergarten room and see what it is like in a classroom. They always have lots of fun! In the final week we have a family week assembly where parents are invited to watch their child perform.

 

Below are some further resources you may find useful as you prepare your child for starting kindergarten.

 

General Tips before starting school

http://www.nlnw.nsw.edu.au/vids2012/K_deG_start_sch_14183/vid14183.htm

 

Literacy Tips for children starting school

http://www.nlnw.nsw.edu.au/vids2012/K_DeG_literacy_14172/vid14172.htm

 

Numeracy tips for children starting school

http://www.nlnw.nsw.edu.au/vids2012/K_deG_numeracy_14173/vid14173.htm

 

My Day in Kindergarten- Video

http://www.schools.nsw.edu.au/gotoschool/primary/primaryindex.php

 

Time to start school: The Family guide to starting Kindergarten

Time to start school (pdf 886 KB)

 

"A Special Place"- A starting school book for your child

A Special Place (pdf 5043 KB)