So the research is done, the applications are in (or they should be) it just a waiting game now. Where will they go? who will be there teacher? will they like it? All the questions going through your minds at the moment. Well we all think the same here, I wonder what it will be like for them in a years time, 2 maybe even 3? We make friendships whilst they are with us and we enjoy every moment working with them and watching them grow. Some have come from babies and we have known for a long time, some will only start towards the end of their time in preschool; but you know we miss them all the same.
Less about the mushy stuff, lets talk business.
Are they ready?
Over the years the definition of school readiness changes, some think they have to write their names, some count to 20 others be able to sit for extensive periods of time. Well we have decided to get the governing bodies opinion on this (cant argue with them they are the bosses )
Now according to Ofsted school readiness is something we all should be aiming for when the children reach 5. Well for some this is almost the moment they reach reception class at school, others (like myself) it was at the end of reception year. So what does that mean for us as a preschool provision?
At the point of transition from pre-school into reception we expect children to have been supported to be independent in their learning and have positive dispositions to it. We expect children to have been supported to be independent in meeting their own personal care needs, to be able to unpack their lunch box, unpack and at the end of the day pack up their own belongings. We expect the children to confidently separate from their carer, although appreciate there may be initial, short lived anxiety.
We expect children to make choices. We expect children to undertake basic risk assessments, recognising potential hazards and make healthy eating choices. Children should recognise and adhere to boundaries especially those around acceptable behaviour.
We expect children to be able to communicate both verbally and non-verbally and to ask questions. We expect children to be working at age related expectations across the seven areas of learning.
We expect children to be ready for this change and to expect that the key adults around them will also be ready and supportive of this change.
When thinking about school we have to ask this question, so what is age related expectations? This is for the child to working comfortably at 30/50 months and emerging into 40/60 months by the time they leave us. We assess and track the children throughout the nursery and work really hard with external agencies to be getting these judgements as robust and accurate as possible. This may look like we are not moving your child along but if you look at the age bands they are huge!
All the things above we do with the children every day supporting them make one of the biggest transition of their live probably the biggest so far, we have to remember we maybe get ready set go for school but lets not rush them as the definition for school readiness is a little different to what we all expected.