Starting school can be a big step. There may be tears, separation anxiety and nervousness – your child may have the same feelings as well!
Jokes aside, it can be a stressful time for both you and your son. Here we provide some useful tips on preparing your son for school.
1. Create excitement about starting school
Talk with your son about what school is like, and the positive things that will happen. For example, you could highlight that he will make new friends, play with lots of new toys, learn new things. Some ways you can help to build the excitement is by:
- Going for walks past the school so that he is familiar with it.
- Have your son choose his own lunchbox, drink bottle, pencil case, school shoes, etc.
- Start a calendar a month out and cross off the days until the first day of school.
- Have him practice writing his name.
2. Prepare your son for the routine of school
At school, your son will need to be increasingly independent, and in the early days will be responsible for unpacking and packing his own bag, and sometimes working by himself. To prepare him for this, have your son take on more responsibility at home – ask him to complete small tasks like setting the table, and have him pack his own bag for outings.
3. Practice personal hygiene
School can be a messy place. Have your son practice washing his hands before meals. Using the bathroom at school can also be a daunting experience particularly for boys encountering urinals for the first time. Ensure your son gets plenty of practice in using public facilities so that visiting the school bathroom does not cause too much stress for him.
So we’ve covered the top three tips to prepare your son for school, but what about you, the parent?
If you are feeling anxious about your child's first day at school – don’t let him see it! Try to remain positive and upbeat about the first day as this will encourage your child to feel the same way.
It can be a stressful time. If you know other parents with sons attending the same school, arrange to go to coffee or lunch with them on the first day so that you can debrief and share your experiences – you will quickly come to realise that what you are feeling is common.
Be open to new friendships with fellow parents – they will be a great source of support in the coming weeks and years.
And finally, know that your child will be well looked after and that school will provide fertile ground for your child to develop, not only academically, but emotionally and physically as well.
At Trinity Grammar School, we recognise that making a great start to a child's learning journey can make all the difference. From the significant foundation years of schooling, boys are provided with opportunities to develop in mind, body and spirit.
To find out if your son is ready for a Kindergarten education at Trinity, and to discover the Trinity difference, download our Kindergarten Ready document.