Guest Post by Rod Soper.
Rod is the cofounder and director of Thinkers.inq, an early learning school for 3-5 years.
School readiness is one tricky subject as every child is different, developing at different rates. As such, and the frustrating thing, is that there isn’t an exact formula. There are, however, some key developmental markers which can help with making this super important decision about finding the right time for starting school a little easier.
Each marker, listed below, will help with your observations when considering whether your child is ready for school life. The markers are designed to facilitate your thinking so that you can make an insightful and educated decision regarding the competencies children need at school and where your champion is currently up to. They can also be used to help you get your preschooler ready for the transition if you observe some to be missing.
- Capably seek out others to play with – this can mean being able to introduce oneself to new people of the same age or being able to confidently navigate a play space to find a current friend.
- Competently share – letting others have a go and being able to wait during a turn taking activity or following rules while playing games.
- Negotiate ‘bossy’ friends – demonstrating problem-solving skills so that play can continue.
- Able to confidently speak with adults about their ideas and needs so that confidence continues to be built and strengthened.
Curious about their world:
- Asks lots questions about the things they see, hear and touch.
- Desires to know more about their interests e.g. how things work or why things react the way they do.
- Keen to use books and resources to help with understanding.
- Eagerly enjoys learning about new ideas presented to them by another person.
- Able to comfortably use pencils to imitate writing and draw. Being able to write their name can be a great way to demonstrate that children are making connections between sounds and written letters.
- Able to independently manage buttons, jumpers, laces and bags.
- Able to successfully navigate through the physical challenges of playgrounds e.g. climbing, running, balancing, swinging.
- Can complete an appropriate task or activity without seeking continued support e.g. completing puzzles, reading a book, finishing a painting.
- Can think about other options when faced with a problem – this means looking for other alternatives before becoming overly frustrated and disconnecting from the task.
- Can thoughtfully select certain food from ‘lunch boxes’ and knows how much to eat at meal times to make it through the day.
- Able to confidently connect with other appropriate adults/caregivers e.g. teachers and educators when parent/s drop off and leave for the day.
This is a guest post written by: Rod Soper
Rod is the cofounder and director of Thinkers.inq, an early learning school for 3-5 years. Thinkers.inq is situated in Terrey Hills on the northern beaches of Sydney. Rod has been an educator and head of school for more than 17 years and is passion about creating educational change for the current Australian context. He is a researcher, writer and speaker. Please visit www.thinkersinq.com to learn more about Thinkers.inq or work with Rod.