What the chuff are transition days?
These are the days that your Superstar Student will spend with their new teacher and their new classmates in the coming half term to give them a taster of what their school life will be like as they move up a year.
Teacher, meet Superstar. Superstar, meet Teacher!
This is a chance for the new teacher to get to know your child! They will have seen the assessments and know what academic level your child has reached in maths and English. They’ve probably talked to your child’s previous teacher! But often they haven’t met your child before, or at the very least, not taught them. This is their chance to find out how confident they are, how they get on with other students, and begin to build a relationship with them.
It’s also a chance for your child to experience the expectations their new teacher has for them – all teachers have different personalities and teaching styles.
Superstars… meet each other!
If your child is moving from Year 2 to 3, or Year 3 to 6, there is a strong possibility that they are going to a bigger school and there will be children from their year from other schools. This is a chance for them to get to know each other before being thrown together in September. It’s a chance to make new friends, and – let’s be honest here – it’s a chance for them to find out the people that they don’t get on with as well.
If your child is going to a school away from their current friends, they are bound to be worried – schools are very aware of this, and often use transition days to put together a friendship group for them.
Get to know your way around!
New schools can be confusing places! During transition days, your child will learn where everything is – classrooms, libraries, where to eat lunch, and of course – where the toilets are!
Even moving within the same school to a different classroom can feel very unfamiliar. It’s a chance to settle in to a new classroom, which in Key Stage 2 will be their base for the next school year.
Learn the daily routine!
Moving to Year 3 from Year 2 will probably mean learning different daily routines. Learning where to line up, what to do during registration, when they can use the library, what time are breaks and lunchtimes – some or all of these may be different.
Many schools have staggered lunchtimes too – changing years may mean that your child goes to lunch earlier or later than the previous year. Changing lunchtimes from 12.00 to 12.30 was one of the most challenging things for me as an adult when I moved from working mainly with Year 3 and 4 to working with Years 5 and 6! I always made sure I had a snack at break time or my stomach would start to rumble – loudly – dead on 12.00!
Time to have some fun!
It might be art, it might be science – it might be introducing the first topic that they will cover in the coming first term. There will almost certainly some PE activities. There will definitely be some ‘getting to know you’ activities. All of these activities are designed to start building the relationships between your Superstar, their new teacher and their new classmates.
(And the most important reason…)
Fear of the unknown is a big thing for everyone, and our little people are no exception! Being able to meet teachers, classmates, spend time in new classrooms and new schools is a good way to ensure that they are as relaxed as possible about joining their new class or school in September – and then they can enjoy their summer holidays!
Remember – all schools should welcome additional contact with your child should he/she have ongoing worries about the new school year, so please don’t hesitate to ask to speak to the head teacher, your child’s new teacher, SENCo or welfare officers if you need to.
Here’s wishing you – and your Superstars – a fantastic last few weeks in their current class!