This year my kids are starting a brand new school. As you can imagine, after all the challenges of the pandemic, there are a few nerves about this from both my children and me! But as a teacher, I’ve had the privilege of looking after many students during their first day in a new school. Here’s what I’ve learnt about making the transition as smooth as possible.
1. Find out all you can
First of all, find out as much as you possibly can about the school before the first day. If you can, visit the school with your child or take a virtual tour, find out where they will eat lunch, and where their classroom will be. It is also a great chance for your children to ask any questions too. Many schools will also have ‘taster’ days or ‘moving up’ days where pupils meet their new teacher for the next year so it may be possible for your kids to attend these, if your new school allows.
2.Preparation is everything
Along with this, it is vital to get logins, emails, and online classrooms set up before the first day or at least during the first week. Not only is this important for online learning, but increasingly it is also how students will and complete their homework. Your school should set this up for your child, but it’s worth checking that everything is in place at the end of the first week.
3. Find other families
It isn’t always possible, but try to get in touch with some of the other families who have kids in the same school; other parents often have the best advice about how the school operates. Sometimes the school can help with this and they may have various ways for parents and students to get to know each other.
4. A positive attitude
Be positive about the first day even if your kids are nervous. It is natural to have some anxiety about a new school but most new students in my classroom do just fine and enjoy their first day. Teachers will be experienced to include all children and will make sure that your child can join in with the lesson.
5. Give your child some space
And after the first day is completed? As a parent, I always wanted to know every detail of my children’s first day as soon as I picked them up. But as a teacher, I know that the first day is extremely tiring! There is so much to learn, not to mention meeting new people online or in real life, finding your way around and obeying all the school rules. When home time arrives your kids may not feel like talking much.
6. Picture time!
Lastly, take a photo of them all dressed up, smiling and ready for their new school before the first day starts. Or… shall we wait with that when we can physically attend school again?! For us, and many others, it is a fond family tradition, one that relatives and friends love too.
Are you looking for an international school in Malaysia for your child? Have a look at our article here!