Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Effective transitions' Part 2 - Visiting Reception first steps

Schools can be such scary places.

Our official transition week(s) doesn't begin till next week in school however we have been underway for quite a while in Nursery.

For Nursery age children it is impossible to hope that they will get everything they need from a single (or a few) short visit(s) so its important to build them up slowly (in much the same way we do for new Nursery children).

Our reception teachers have been very accommodating over the past few weeks as we have begun to take small groups (>6 children) over each day to visit them in their classrooms and to take part in carpets sessions such as story time etc. 
One teacher took the time to show our children around her classroom and explain all the different toys therein and to discuss the similarities between Nursery and Reception.  Many of the children were vocal about the similarities which will aid transition as they can engage in familiar play.

As these groups have progressed the Nursery is suddenly full of chitter chatter about Reception and every time a new group goes over, more children want to go with them and visit again.

Each child is given 2 or 3 turns at visiting and a chance to see each part of the environment including the playground, the cloakroom, toilets, corridor and each teachers classroom.  
We are also careful to enter the way that children will enter when they start in September.

One of our children who fingers new experiences difficult (little boy S) has been struggling to cope with this transition.  We introduced him to Reception honestly and openly, talking about the upcoming change.  The first visit was very difficult getting him to cross the playground to his new class.  
Each subsequent visit has been difficult but it is definitely getting better as he begins to reassure himself that we are coming back and there is nothing scary.

We are trying a couple of new strategies at the moment.  His class teacher has had his cousin this year who he is very close to. So hopefully when he does spend time over in Reception he can spend it with him.  S' cousin can also come to Nursery to 'collect' him if necessary.
We have asked S' dad to come in to Nursery tomorrow and come with us to Reception so that he can talk about Reception with his dad who he is very close to.

We shall see how it goes!

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