At the start of the afternoon of 17th SEPTEMBER 2020, I was contacted by a parent of a child in Skylarks (3) to inform me that their child has tested positive for Covid-19. The child was not in school on this day. The parents of all the other students in the child’s class (Skylarks class), have been contacted and all children and staff in this class have been sent home this afternoon and told to self-isolate for 14 days. The rooms where the class have been taught are to be deep cleaned immediately. No other student bubbles in any other year group have been affected.
Questions, Questions Questions !!!!
We have complied some typical questions we get asked and have answered them in as much detail as possible –
When will I find out about my child’s Reception class and teacher?
Normally we would invite you to a New Parent’s Meeting in June and present you with all the initial information you need regarding your child starting school. However, due to Covid-19, everything has had to change. We hope we can give you as much information as possible on our website and communicating through email.
How can I be a part of my child’s education as much as possible?
From a teacher’s point of view we would love it if every parent did the following –
Provide school routine in a morning so children are not late or hungry .
Make sure your child knows who is picking them up on that particular day.
Read to your child every evening.
Read with your child for about 15 minutes every day.
Write in the Reading Record every day.
Go over letter sounds every day (once your child receives a letters and sounds book.)
Keep updated with the web site for information.
Talk to your child as much as you can. If they can’t say it, they won’t read, write or explain themselves.
Complete ‘Star moments’ these are notes which tell the class teacher what amazing things your child has done and they are shared with the class (ensuring that we can prompt your child if they have forgotten.)
Make friends with the year group community.
My child was part time at nursery, how will they cope with starting full days?
We start all children on full days as your child can get into the school routine straight away and not have it changed through the year. We know that most learning is done when the children are happy and settled and being in full time from the beginning gets them into a settled routine straight away. The majority of children settle in really well and can cope with the full days. Others may need a little support but soon get familiar with the setting and the timings. Your child will be tired when they get home but may just need an earlier bedtime.
Is the reception year all about painting and playing?
No this year is called the Foundation stage and with your support will set your child up for the rest of their school life. We will teach them how to behave at school how to learn at school, how to speak to others at school, how to become independent learners and thinkers, how to read, how to write, how to count and calculate, how to ask for help, how to be resilient, how to be determined, how to be creative, – the list could go on forever! We teach a lot through play which is so important in the early years curriculum.
Where do I drop my child off, can I come into the class with them?
At the moment you will not be allowed to enter the building or classroom with your child due to the COVID 19 restrictions, This is an ever-changing situation which we will review and change accordingly. In normal circumstances the following would happen -
You can bring your child into the reception classroom for the first 2 weeks, so you can help them find their coat peg, name badge and self- registration name. We would like you to support them in doing this and not do it for them! For example, encourage them to take their coat off and look for their name rather than taking their coat off for them. After 2 weeks your child will be settled in and will know the routine, therefore we ask you to say good bye to your child at the door.
Can I drop my child off earlier than 8:40 a.m.?
Breakfast club is available. Ask in the school office for details and availability. The Reception yard is open from 8:30 to wait with your child and doors open at 8:35 a.m.
What does my child need to bring to school every day?
Named book bag, reading book, reading record, Letters and Sounds book
Names coat, jumper or cardigan.
Will you toilet train my child?
Unfortunately no as we would need 2 members of staff to do this and with 30 in each class, you can imagine the scenes in the toilet area!!
What happens if they have a toilet accident?
Wet ones will be dealt with as soon as we know about it and we will discreetly give you the wet clothes at the end of the day.
Dirty ones may need you to come and clean your child up (for safeguarding and staffing reasons).
Please wash and return the spare school clothes and return asap as we have a limited supply of spare trousers/pants/socks etc.
When will my child need their PE kit?
PE kits are brought into at the beginning of term and kept in school for the term. It will be sent home for a wash at the end of term.
Does my child need wellies?
Yes please. We will use them regularly as the children are outside every day and we have woodland adventures. Please bring them in on the first day of term – with their name written on.
Should I be teaching my child to write their name or read or recognise numbers?
Please do not worry about your child writing and reading before they start school. Recognising their name would be a great start. Reading to them lots will help them to hear words and sounds and this will be a great start in the road to reading and writing. Do lots of counting. Basically the most important thing is TALK, TALK, TALK (and practising dressing and undressing and using the toilet.)
What do I (and you) do if my child is crying when I drop them off?
We are used to it. A few children will cry at dropping off time at some point in the year as tiredness gets to them or they realise they have to keep coming to this school thing every day!!! We will ask you to try and release yourself from them and we will help you with this by trying to distract your child with stickers etc in the classroom so you can get away. We promise you they will be ok in a few minutes. If they do not settle we will telephone you. We do understand how upsetting this can be for all concerned.
My child usually uses a short name, will they learn to write that or their long name?
That depends on you. We will soon be starting to make labels for coat pegs and drawers so please let us know if you prefer them to be called something else. Some parents like their child to be called something else but learn to write the long name, again that is fine as long as we know.
How many jumpers should I buy?
Maybe 2, one to wear and one spare? We always end up with lost jumpers, as no name has been written in them. Inevitably there will be times when another child goes home with the wrong jumper/trousers/shoes you name it! But as soon as we know and if it is named we usually get it back. So please every time you wash something, check the name is clearly visible.
Will my child come home really dirty after a day at school?
We will use paints, chalk, water, sand, we have a mud kitchen, gardening area and the outside area can be muddy/dusty and wet so be prepared. We have waterproof clothing for every child but that doesn’t mean they won’t still get wet and muddy! Just know that they are having fun whilst learning, have a look at our display to see what they might come home like!
Why is my child so tired?
Getting used to new routines and people (big and little ones) is tiring. School is different to nursery as much as we try to replicate it for transition, we do not have the same numbers of adults or the same free flow. We will be encouraging them to become more independent and resilient and this will take a lot more energy.
When will my child be the star of the week or similar?
Oh isn’t it hard to wait!! We try and give out rewards as fairly as possible. We keep records of who has had rewards and when, so there is a sense of fairness. Every child is given positive encouragement and starts the day with a clean slate.
When will I hear about how my child is doing?
We try to talk to most parents during the week but it takes a long time to get around 30 parents, so please take ‘no news is good news.’ If you would like to talk about your child, just wait until the children have been picked up and there will be time to talk to the class teacher then, or book an appointment to meet. We have parent teacher meetings once a term, where you will find out how your child is doing socially and academically in a more formal meeting. Every term you will have a short pupil progress report to tell you how your child is doing.
Can my child bring in a snack?
Children have a free piece of fruit every day and a school dinner so do not need to bring in any other snacks.
Will my child have access to drinking water?
All children have access to drinking water all day.
When will my child be given a reading book?
Children will be given a picture reading book in the second week. All children start with a picture book to encourage them to talk about the pictures, answer questions about the story etc. Children move onto books with words when they are ready and are beginning to recognise letter shapes and sounds.
What homework will my child be expected to do?
Each week we set ‘Talking Homework’ this will involve you talking to your child about a specific topic or doing a specific task, for example going for a walk in the park or drawing a picture. We ask you, the parent/carer to write in the talking homework book about what your child has said and any other information you would like to tell us about the task.
What type of coat does my child need?
A waterproof coat if possible for lunchtime play.
How do I contact you if I have a question or worry?
During the COVID 19 restrictions we are asking our parents to contact Mrs Jo Worthy (EYFS Team Leader) on owletsR@barden.lancs.sch.uk