Transition to School
As parents we all want the best for our children, they are our taonga, our special treasures. Starting school is one of the most important milestones in your children’s life, so we at Pukeko Corner Kindergarten are committed to helping the whole family in this transition to school go as smoothly as possible.
This involves working in partnership to provide the academic, physical, and social skills necessary to succeed. This does not occur just before they start school, but throughout the first five years – with skills taught and practised over a period of time. We understand that children need the fundamental physical skills before any formal learning can take place, for example being able to jump, hang upside down and bear their own weight.
Research on transition to school for the Ministry of Education concurs, stating “that successful transitions depend on the nature of the relationship between all involved.” Their research also found that “no matter how academically capable a child is, unhappiness over lack of friends, problems in the playground or toilets, inappropriate challenges, low expectations and so on, have negative consequences for their learning .“
Our team know that a child who is happy and confident in themselves is open to learn and develops a love for learning.
Shared leadership within our kindergarten amongst the teachers, whanau/families and children contributes to the strength and knowledge present within our daily programme, our planning and in all that we do. Everyone who is part of our Pukeko Family has knowledge, strengths and passions that we can learn and grow from. We celebrate a collaborative approach to learning not just within but drawing on our wider community.
Since opening in 2007 we have maintained strong relationships with all our local schools. We visit Katikati Primary School according to the needs of our children and families. Not only do we visit the new entrants’ classes but attend school performances and Kapahaka practises and play on their playground.
Graduates day is part of our termly programme. This is where past students are invited back to join us for the morning, to share their experiences of school, and accomplishments and to share with their younger peers what they have been learning. It’s an empowering time for both groups of children.
Those who have had their children with us know how literacy and numeracy rich our environment is. There is no need to sit our children down and bombard them with things we think they need to be ready for school. At Pukeko Corner it happens naturally, in a meaningful context, setting children up with a love of learning and being challenged.
Part of our transition to school programme includes meeting with parents and listening to their aspirations for their children, areas they have concerns about and together setting goals. “Our children get excited about taking home a “Home Kete”, filled with readers and activities to extend learning at home”, says Kim our experienced Montessori teacher.
We had a wonderful ERO review last year. They said we “respond to children’s interests and foster their learning in a programme that has strengths in dramatic play, literacy, mathematics, science, cooking, art, physical activities and skills and Te Ao Maori”
We believe children at this age don’t need the latest I Pads, laptops etc, they come to kindy to play, socialise and be creative. We use computers as research tools to support children’s learning and interests.
Sharing with Mrs Hayman (new entrants teacher) our Learning Journey is part of what we do on school visits.