Jackie Erskine, Pre-school Leader in our Ross Street setting, shares about how they are helping our older Pre-schoolchildren to prepare for starting ‘big school’ in September. 

The Summer Term in Pre-school is one of mixed emotions. Primarily it is so rewarding to see how the children have settled and blossomed throughout the academic year. As their confidence grows, they become more adept at interacting with adults and their peers, and as a result their play can become more involved as they master new skills and extend others. 

We also prepare to say good-bye to a significant number of the children as they move on to Reception classes at local schools, so a high priority for the term is preparing the children for this transition.  

Most children have just had their school places confirmed for September. With so many primary schools in the area, some children will be going to the same school as another child, but some will be transitioning on their own. Excitement and anxieties are shared as the parents chat about the next chapter in their children’s lives.  

Throughout this term, at our 3–4-year-old setting in Ross Street, we help to prepare the children for ‘big school’ as they play and listen to stories about starting or going to school, about making new friends, as well as look through some picture books about school routines. The children will begiven opportunities to role play in ‘school’ with book bags, and a wide range of activities. 

Reports celebrating the children’s progress and achievements throughout the year will be written and shared with the families as well as the receiving school. We will be liaising with other agencies and professionals to ensure that an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) is in place to enable children with special needs to receive the necessary support as they transition. Passing on any relevant information to the next setting to try to ensure that the transition goes as smoothly as possible, and the children are given the best possible start to their formal education is key.  

It can be difficult for the Pre-school staff to see the children move on but it is also rewarding, knowing that we have prepared them well!