School is fast approaching for many of our children and this year my four year old is joining in and starting school this September. Starting School is a big step for any children (and parents too). During normal times schools would have transitional/ induction days for the children to discover their new school. But if like myself we’ve had our days cancelled due to the pandemic this year. It is proving to be a big adjustment for my little boy. School is an exciting new step but it can also bit a little anxious for them and us as parents too!
Book for starting school
I am a huge fan of books, my house is covered in them with hundreds of books in each room. I believe that books are a great way to help children explore their feelings .They also help us as parents to start those conversations about emotions and feelings towards a particular subject. Maybe they can relate to a character in the book. My little boy is really anxious about starting school but having some books to read had really helped him understand starting school.
Here is some books that I think that could help. We have a huge range of books perfect for school, from wipe clean books to picture books find them all here.
Starting School – Janet and Allan Ahlberg
An absolute classic of a story which I remember from my childhood. A reassuring read for parents and children as you read through the routine of a school day.
When a Dragon goes to School – Caryl Hart & Rosalind Beardshaw
This has been one a big hit in our house this month. Not only is there an adorable dragon in the story but it also touches on feelings and recognisable preschool behaviours. A great book to talk about sharing, being kind and starting school.
Join this famous little rabbit as he starts school. A character that many children love and are familiar with in a reassuring picture book. Peter is excited to start forest school with Benjamin Bunny. They can’t wait to learn all about the woodland they live in with Mr. Jeremy Fisher.
Books to help with emotions and feelings
Tom Percival’s Big Bright Feelings Books are a fantastic series of books with diverse characters to help children understand different feelings and emotions they may be feeling or that their friends may be feeling. We currently have them on an fantastic offer here with 20% off RRP for a bundle of these four books!
Children have feelings just like us adults but they can’t always tell us what they are feeling. The Colour Monster helps them understand and explore their feelings and understand what they are feeling.
One day, Colour Monster wakes up feeling very confused. His emotions are all over the place; he feels angry, happy, calm, sad and scared all at once! To help him, a little girl shows him what each feeling means through colour.
This has been one of our favourites this year. With the quote “Were all like jelly sometimes” sits with us all. Sometimes were nervous and anxious and feel all wobbly on the inside.
It has really helped me and my son talk together about how we feel. Also why we are feeling like this. We’ve had to read to read this at least 3 times a day for the last month!
I have big feelings. You have them too. How can I help? What can we do?
Follow a group of children through a day in their neighbourhood, as they play together and navigate the BIG feelings that we all experience.
After a long day at school, children may come home exhuasted, tired and may need time to process their days. As a parent I love to hear about James day but I have also learnt to follow his lead in chatting about his day. Some children don’t want to talk about their days straight away, some may chat from the roof tops. Maybe make a cosy little reading/quiet area where they can come home and relax in? Or maybe choose some books to read together after school.
Tips for being more confident when starting school
- Start playing little games together, the orchard toys ones are a great pick. These will help with concentration which when they are in school they need to start to sit and do small activities
- Recognise their name – they don’t need to be able to write it but being able to find their peg/draw will help make them more confident. If not put a handy keyring on their book bag to help them find theirs.
- Are you are doing packed lunch? Encourage them to be able to open and close the lunch bag and any lids or packets independently.
- If you are doing school lunches can they eat with a knife and fork independently?
- Practice dressing and undressing for PE there is a great book here to help with skills of zips and buttons.
- Use the toilet independently. Including wiping themselves and handwashing afterwards.
How about drawing a little heart on you and them and when they are feeling anxious or worried they can touch it and know you are there.
Have Fun at school
check out our back to school category for much more from drinks bottles to wellies for outdoor play find it all here.
We wish all the children starting school this year lots of good wishes and hope they enjoy their next step in to reception.