First days at school are one of the times that stand out for many families. A sign that your son or daughter is becoming more independent. It can be an emotional day for all involved.
But the reality is that by giving advance thought to your son or daughter’s transition to secondary school, you can make it run a lot more smoothly if you start to get prepared early. Here are some tips of things to think about:
As your child moves to secondary school, the balance of responsibility will start to shift from you, to them.
Whilst in primary school they may have only had one teacher, in secondary school they’ll have many. They will be expected to bring the right book to the right lesson. Suddenly your child is expected to be organised.
Luckily there are things that you can do to help. Giving them a chance to practice speaking to adults independently, going to shops to help with tasks for you, and walking home – providing the environment is safe, can be good ways of building up independence, so that your child is ready for secondary school.
In the jump to secondary school, homework will step up a gear, and for many children and parents, this can be a source of unhappiness and arguments.
Firstly, it’s worth taking some time to think about when the homework will fit into the child’s routine. Teachers often recommend pupils having some time to decompress, before getting onto their homework – for obvious reasons, leaving it too late in the day is not recommended either.
A lot of their homework will require computer access. It’s a good idea, now, in the years ahead of secondary school, to get them to work on learning to type. This will make homework a lot smoother and will be one less thing to worry about.
Most children will already have a mobile phone in the run up to secondary school, if they don’t, they will need one by the time they get to secondary school.
Having apps like Find My Friends and Life360 are particularly good for parents’ peace of mind, as they can let you see where your children are in real time. The latter can be set up to send you notifications when your child arrives at school.
Other things to start considering is what level of parental control you will want over your child’s phone; getting a plan with a considerable data limit is sensible, as it’s likely their data usage will start to increase significantly.
Whilst secondary school can feel like a scary time for the whole family, with a bit of preparation, the jump can be a lot more manageable.
At Learntinue, we’re passionate about making learning achievable for families. Watch out for more blogs about making the transition to secondary school, and how to optimise learning for your entire family; and to see what content we have for the 11+ prep, sign up for a free trial on learrntinue.ai.