Information for families of Junior Infant pupils
Fáilte romhat agus roimh do pháiste. Welcome to Citywest Educate Together National School.
Starting school will be a big change in the life of your child. It is a time when families and teachers take special care to ensure that the transition from home to school is as smooth as possible. If the child’s first experience of school is one of happy involvement, a very good foundation will have been laid for rewarding school years ahead.
We know from experience that parents/guardians are very eager to help in any way possible. We have, therefore, included some ideas for the home, which should help ensure a smooth transition to primary school.
Getting Ready for Learning
Our first year in school is mainly about settling in, relating to others, making friends, feeling happy and gradually getting used to the routine of the school. On the learning side the emphasis is on getting children ready for learning by –
Ø Developing their oral language and expression.
Ø Sharpening their senses, especially seeing, hearing and touching.
Ø Developing physical co-ordination especially of hand and fingers.
Ø Extending their concentration span and getting them to listen attentively.
Ø Learning through play – the most enjoyable and effective way.
Ø Co-operating with the teacher and other children.
Ø Performing tasks by themselves.
Ø Working with others and sharing with them.
Ø Teaching each child to follow classroom guidelines which is necessary for the class to work well.
Before Your Child Starts…
You should ensure that your child is as independent as possible - physically, emotionally and socially. If they can look after themselves in these areas they will feel secure and confident and settle in readily.
Please ensure that your child can do the following;
· Zip closed and zip open their coat and hang it up.
· Use the toilet without help and manage pants buttons. Your child should practise putting on and taking off clothing, particularly as this may be done in the confined space of a cubicle in September.
· Also encourage personal hygiene and cleanliness. Your child should know to flush the toilet and wash their hands, without having to be told.
- Good respiratory hygiene is so important these days. Your child should be encouraged to sneeze or cough into his/her elbow, use a tissue and wash his/her hands after.
- Use a tissue when necessary.
- Hand washing- We will be washing our hands and sanitising throughout the day. It is important that your child be familiar with these practices.
· Share toys and playthings with others and “take turns”.
· Tidy up and put away their playthings.
· Close their own shoes – velcro straps rather than laces may be a good idea in the first couple of weeks in school.
· Remain contentedly for a few hours in the home of a relation, friend or neighbour. If s/he had this experience, then separation from you when s/he starts school will not cause him/her any great anxiety.
Playing with your child
Play is often described as children’s ‘work’. Playing helps your young child to
■ build relationships
■ be creative
■ read, write and learn about numbers
■ use language
■ use small and large muscles
Play is an important way for your child to learn and to work with other children.
Here are some tips which you might find useful as a parent.
1. Give your child time to play every day.
2. Provide things for your child to play with. Recycled materials like boxes, household items and old clothes are often more fun than bought toys and equipment, and they cost less.
3. Join in the play. Take on a role, make jokes and be playful.
4. Make space for play. As your child gets older he/she will probably spend more time playing with a particular thing or in a particular role, so having a place where your child can leave items and continue playing with them the next day is important.
5. When chatting, ask what your child was playing that day. Show that you value play whether it’s at home, with the childminder, in pre-school, in playgroup or in primary school.
6. Tell your childminder or the staff in the pre-school, playgroup or primary school about the games, activities, nursery rhymes, and books your young child enjoys.
Reading with your child
Story reading with your child is both fun and a valuable educational activity. This time together helps your child develop language skills and a love for books. We have found some tips to help families read together and also to help those members of our school community who come in to read stories to children during Mother Language and Book Week. We hope you find them useful.
Click here for more tips on reading with your child
Please keep informed and check for school emails every day. This year, email has been one of the main means of communication between staff and parents.
If you have any concerns / queries, please talk to your child’s teacher.
Keep an eye on the Family Noticeboard in school and on www.citywestetns.ie for updates on other school-related information, activities and events. We recommend you visit the school website each week.
We look forward to meeting your child and are certain that they will have a very positive experience here in Citywest Educate Together N.S.