Tim Barber

How to smooth the transition from preschool to early years

We need to maximise the opportunities for children to get used to their new surroundings before they start school, so that they thrive from the moment they arrive, writes early years expert Tim Barber

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As the bell rings to signal the start of a new school year, the Reception class children skip merrily into the room enthused about what lies ahead on their first day at “big school”. I wave goodbye to the parents with a reassuring smile, but I know what happens next – every Year R teacher knows. Unbeknown to the children, parents are huddled together outside the school gates, feeling emotional and reminiscing about where the last four years have gone.

It’s not always the case but this morning’s events are a bigger shock to the system for the parents than for the happy children, who are already ...

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