Reception New Parents FAQ
We understand that as a parent with a child starting school for the very first time you may have a mountain of questions to ask. This is perfectly understandable! We have tried to gather some of the more frequently asked questions and their answers here for you but if there is something else you need to know please do get in touch. No question is a silly question - we are here to help and look forward to starting this journey with you!
What is the routine on arrival?
Arrival time is between 8:50-9.10am. There will be a member of staff at the infant hall door waiting to welcome all of the children on entry. Unfortunately, due to new government regulations you will need to say goodbye to your child at the door. Your child will then hang his /her coat up in the cloakroom. They will choose a book to read on the carpet till all the children arrive. When it is time, the teacher will come and sit on the carpet ready for registration.
What equipment will my child need to bring to school?
Can my child bring toys into school?
We know your child may want to bring a toy in from home however, to prevent things getting lost or broken in school, it is better for these to stay at home where they are safe. If your child wants to bring something in to show the class - a special artifact, photograph, project etc - we are always happy for this to happen but please pass directly to the teacher so that they can be stored safely until the right time.
What should I do if my child is ill?
Please telephone the school office as soon as you can. Our voicemail service runs 24/7 so if you cannot speak to anyone directly then please leave a message.
What if my child needs medicine during the school day?
We do not accept medicines at the classroom door. You will need to fill in a form which is available at the school office - please walk round and someone will be happy to help. We are only able to administer current medicines prescribed by a doctor and clearly labelled with your child’s name.
If your child needs an inhaler, please provide one that can be kept in school. You will be asked to fill in a form so that your child can be added to our asthma register.
What if I need to collect my child early for an appointment / we are late coming in to school one morning?
Please inform the teacher if you need to collect your child from school early for an appointment - wherever possible we ask to see an appointment card / letter. On the day of the appointment please go to the office and someone will collect your child for you.
If you are late for school one morning you will need to come to the school office - rather than your usual gate - as your child will need to be marked as present on the register. They will then be taken to class by the office staff.
What is ‘choosing’?
Children in the Early Years spend time independently planning their own learning. They ‘choose’ the area in which they would like to explore. The adults then facilitate and/or extend the learning taking place. Sometimes the ‘choosing’ play will be play in which the children are exploring feelings such as empathy; sometimes they may act out scenarios in a safe environment; they may negotiate and form friendships; or develop understanding about how to share and compromise. These are just some examples of how ‘choosing’ develops important skills for lifelong learning.
How is reading/writing/maths taught?
In Reception we follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and tailor our teaching to supporting the individual needs of each pupil. Teachers teach phonics daily following the Read Write Inc scheme. During parents evening, we will be able to offer parents support on how they can help their children with reading and writing at home. We teach maths in small groups. After all of our short inputs for writing / maths we have lots of activities, both inside and out, for the children to practise their new skills in different contexts and work with the adults in the spaces to extend and embed their learning even further.
Where will my child have dinner (and what will they have)?
Your child will eat their dinner in the main dining hall. The EarlyYears children eat at a slightly earlier time than the older children in school. They will be supported by a member of the Early Years team but will also be encouraged to build their independence. If they are having a school dinner they will choose from 2 options in the morning these include a meat option and a vegetarian option. The menu runs on a 4 week cycle and your child's class teacher will happily give you a copy of this so that you can see what your child has had to eat.
Who will be working with my child?
Your child will either be in class 1 or class 2 and they will work closely with their own class teacher. However due to the way Early Years works your child will also work with the opposite class teacher and all the support staff that are in the setting. The children will have access to their classroom and the outside space at most points during the day.
Will I ever be able to come into school?
Due to the current situation, parents will be unable to enter school. Your child’s class teacher will be available to speak to you though in the morning and at home time. If you do need to speak to them, please just wait till the other children have entered school or have left at the end of the day. Usually, we would run our ‘Mouse Club’ every six weeks where you can come in school and work alongside your child while they take part in lots of fun craft activities. We are hoping that this will be something we can resume at some point.
What sort of things will my child be doing at school?
The drop off and pick up times have changed for September in order to prevent a build up of parents and children in the yard. You can drop your children off between 8.50am-9.10am and can collect them between 3.15p-3.30pm.
During the school day, children will have a phonics lesson with a member of the Early Years team, complete some small group maths/writing activities, have an opportunity to play outside and also be given plenty of time to explore the indoor areas of learning.
Will my child go outside?
We are very lucky with our outside space - our facilities are great! Your child will be able to go outside whatever the weather. We ask parents to make sure that children are sent with suitable clothing to allow this to happen. As well as playtimes outside children will go outside for small group activities and also for free choosing time.
Can my child go to an after school club?
Our after school club is available for children to use every evening. Places need to be booked and paid for in advance. Due to the current situation, places are limited for September so please ensure you have booked this if required.
When are the school holidays?
Please check the relevant section on the school website or speak to your class teacher and they can get you a copy of the calendar. We take an extra week holiday in May/June (two weeks rather than one) so that you can benefit from booking cheaper flights.
What is expected of me as a parent?
We encourage parents to take an active role in their child’s school life. This will include; reading at home, attending parent workshops (where possible), attending parents evening, keeping school up to date with any changes in circumstance and most importantly making sure your child is prepared for the school day e.g. having a good sleep, eating a healthy breakfast.
Do you have a breakfast club?
We offer a breakfast club for all children in school. Children will have a chance to have a healthy breakfast and play games with new friends. Please see the page on our school website for more details.
Do the children need to bring a snack to school?
All children will be provided with free daily fruit and milk while in reception. Every child is also given a free water bottle when they start school with us so they have access to water throughout the day. There is no need for them to bring any other snacks into school (If this information changes due to new regulations in September I will inform parents of this).