Our approach to school readiness
In Pre-School we support the children in their journey towards school readiness to help them to make that exciting transition to ‘Big School’ as smooth as possible. You can read more about a typical daily routine at Shooting Stars here.
We foster good relationships with local Primary Schools and as a result, have developed an approach to school-readiness that Reception teachers regularly praise. Our experienced Pre-School team combine this with lots of fun and games to engage the children and promote play and integration with their friends, ensuring activities lead on from, and extend, the interests of the children.
Here in Preschool at Shooting Stars, we focus on supporting the children in all of the skills they need to be independent and ready to learn when they join Reception. We aim to support our Preschool children to be ready to join the classroom and willing to participate in all aspects of school life both inside and outside of the classroom.
Ensuring children are able to manage their own self-care, are independent, able to listen and pay attention and have a desire to learn are some of the most important factors in ensuring a smooth school transition. Children who have been well prepared for school in this way are highly likely to transition smoothly into Reception where they ‘hit the ground running’. The children then quickly make progress because they are ready to learn with a positive and eager attitude, giving them a fantastic start to their school career. For further information about our approach, please download our School Readiness pack below.
How we prepare the children for school
- We increasingly utilise daily routines to prepare the children for the routines of the school day.
- We offer lots of mark making and malleable materials such as playdough and gloop, which helps to strengthen the muscles in the children’s hands and fingers in preparation for pencil control.
- We gather the children to participate in small and large group activities, story and song time to promote their listening skills, participation and attention.
- We encourage the children to dress and undress themselves and use the toilet
- We encourage self-service during mealtimes to promote choice, independence and use of cutlery.
- We enjoy lots of outdoor play experience the benefits of being physically active.
- We set up the role play area to offer the children the opportunity to explore the classroom scenario.
- We encourage the children to be inquisitive and curious by asking lots of questions, helping them to become creative and reflective thinkers and promoting the desire to learn.
- We set appropriate boundaries for good behaviour, giving lots of praise and positive reinforcement for displaying kindness and respect for others.
The most important thing is that your child feels happy, supported and eager to learn when they take their next big step on their journey through childhood. We are here to support and guide families throughout the school transition process, so if you have any questions at any time please just ask and we’ll be glad to help.
Do we teach Phonics in Preschool?
In Preschool, we introduce Letters and Sounds (Phase 1) to develop the children’s speaking and listening skills in order to lay strong foundations for Phonics work (Phase 2) in Reception at school. We focus more on laying good Letters and Sounds foundations and pre-writing skills than on formal writing and Phonics. Feedback from teachers, our learning from training courses and experience has guided this focus on development of pre-writing skills and introduction of letters and sounds in Preschool.