Getting ready for Prep
In Queensland, Prep is the first year of schooling. Prep is a full-time program that children attend from Monday to Friday during normal school hours (9am-3pm), located on school grounds.
Talking with your child about going to Prep, what they can expect to do there and other kids they know who go to school will help them feel more confident about their transition to school.
Reading books together about children starting school helps your child know what to expect and start conversations about some of the emotions they might experience.
Enrolling your child in a kindy program the year before they start Prep can help them transition into the school environment.
Before day one
Practising the school routine before day one reduces the number of changes they will experience at once. By practicing putting on shoes, packing a lunch and even walking or driving to school, you are helping your child settle into their new routine.
You might want to meet their teacher ahead of time and take your child to see where the classroom is. Seeing you talking to their teacher shows your child they can turn to their teacher for help or support. While visiting the school, making sure they know how to use drinking fountains and are familiar with public toilets ahead of time is helpful in navigating a new environment.
Knowing what they need to bring (hat, water bottle, correct shoes, and bag) ahead of day one will help make the morning of the first day smoother.
The first day
Having a good breakfast prepared and a healthy lunch packed for your child means they will have the energy they need to get through the excitement of their first day.
Your child will look to you for guidance on how to react. By being confident, happy and sharing their excitement, you are helping them feel secure. Talking to your child about the school-day routine (start times, lunches, and finish) and where you will meet them after will make them feel confident in their new environment.
Talking about what they learned, who their teacher is, what the other children are like and what they enjoyed shows your child you are interested in their learning and proud of them.