The advent of the autumn and September means many things to many people and perhaps while you’re looking forward to country rambles and kicking leaves about, your neighbour may well be rubbing his hands in glee at the prospect of a new football season.
However, for the smaller members of society, September means only one thing – back to school – and if you’re a parent who has a child going to school for the first time are you having last minute nerves prior to sending your little ones into action?
I recently witnessed a frantic looking tiger mum drilling her child’s reading skills ahead of allowing them to enter a swimming pool and it’s with this in mind that the tips below have become essential reading for those who are contemplating a new term in the forthcoming weeks.
Kids should have been going on play dates or attending nursery or pre-school from around nine months and through a blend of cause and effect it will be possible to get your little one ready to mingle way before they stand at the school gates. Allowing your child to learn and grow in their own way is vitally important and if you can withstand the need to shadow their every move at the play park you’ll no doubt be doing them a favour. Birthday parties, family gatherings and sleep-overs all get kids independent and ready for school, just try your best to let them go.
With the new educational thinking that English and Maths will need to be re-sat if not passed first time at a Grade C at GCSE level, teaching your child about letters and numbers has never been more important. Books are the key to learning words and finding out about numbers and if you’re able to demonstrate clearly how to enunciate and use phonics then all the better. Wipe clean writing boards are great for practising writing and if you can get your offspring to sit down for at least a few minutes each day then they’ll no doubt be ready ahead of hitting the classroom.
Obviously, with learning numbers it’s not as easy as reading stories to your child every night although, once you start looking for numbers you maybe surprised to see how many there are during the course of just a short walk outside. Bus journeys, shopping trips and front doors all have a wealth of numbers that can be learned about and copied no matter where you’re going and by adding a number chart to your child’s bedroom wall you’ll get them used to reeling off one to one hundred in no time at all.
Health and PE
Not every child is interested in sport however, this doesn’t mean that they have to sit in front of the TV or on the iPad all day long. Going out on country walks or on their scooter or bike is exactly what they should be doing to build their muscles and improve their health and the earlier they can get to bed and sleep through the night then the better they’ll be in the morning come the school bell. Swimming, throwing a ball for the dog or just aiming to get a few pebbles to hit an empty tin can at the beach – sports and health are a fact of life but you don’t have to go over the top in getting your child involved away from the playing field.
Broaden their Mind
There’s no better way to prepare your child for the prospect of meeting new people and learning new things other than to take them away on holiday. Sports, socialising and interactive learning experiences are literally lying await the moment that you reach the airport, train station or shut the car door and there’s no better way to discover geography other than sticking a world map on your child’s bedroom wall. No matter what you want to do or where you want to go, from USA holidays to trips to grandma’s house in Yorkshire, travel broadens the mind and there’s no better way to equip your child other than to get them outside and active before they’re confined to the classroom.