Transition to school resources for educators
Transition to school is not a ‘one-off event’ – it spans from when children start to get ready for school until they have fully adjusted to school. The evidence consistently suggests that a successful transition to school acts as a significant lever for improving children’s educational and social outcomes.
Transition to school resources
To help early childhood professionals engage children in effective and meaningful preparation for school we've developed a practical resources pack which includes:
- Daisy's First Day (PDF 5.5MB) – a storybook featuring fictional native Australian animal characters going through a typical school day. It helps teachers and educators facilitate conversations about what children might experience at school.
Daisy's First Day.
Today was Daisy’s first day at big school. She was rather nervous and her tummy was full of butterflies. Daisy wasn’t quite sure what to think about school.
“Do you think I will have fun today?” asked Daisy.
“I sure do,” said Mum. “And I want you to remember all the fun you have so you can tell me all about it.”
Mum gave her a big, squishy, cuddly hug – the best kind of hug.
“Bye Daisy! I’ll see you very soon.”
“Welcome to your classroom,” said her teacher, Miss Wattle.
Daisy could see all the colours of the rainbow. She thought it looked like a bright and happy place.
Daisy met her new friends. It was their first day too.
“My favourite colour is green,” said Spike.
“That’s my favourite colour too!” said Daisy.
“You can play with my dinosaur if you want,” said Spike.
Daisy was having lots of fun.
“Let’s sing a song about the alphabet,” said Miss Wattle.
Together, they sang and clapped and stomped. Miss Wattle said they could make up their own dance too.
“I’m wriggling my paws and waggling my ears!” said Daisy.
“I’m waving my nose and jiggling my spines!” said Spike. Daisy was having lots and lots of fun.
“Now we are going to paint,” said Miss Wattle. Daisy pulled on her smock and painted a picture of her family. Miss Wattle said the class was full of marvellous artists.
Just then, a kookaburra flew across the sky. He was ringing a bell and laughing.
“Haha hehe hoohoo haha hehe!”
“Time for lunch,” said Miss Wattle.
Daisy gobbled up her gum leaves. Spike licked and slurped up his ants.
“Let’s swing on the swing and slide down the slide and run from here to there and back again!” said Spike. So they did. Daisy was having lots and lots and lots of fun.
After lunch, the class played games with numbers. Daisy counted one teddy bear, two flowers, three pebbles, four pencils and five books.
“I’m going to read you a most wonderful story,” said Miss Wattle. She read them a book about a dog who ate his dinner with a fork and a spoon. Daisy was having lots and lots and lots and lots of fun.
All at once it was home time. Daisy was filled to the brim with all the fun she’d had at school. Mum was waiting for her outside the classroom.
She pulled Daisy in for a big, squishy, cuddly hug. “Now tell me Daisy, did you have fun?”
“I had lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of fun!” said Daisy.
“Well, that’s a lot of fun,” said Mum. And it certainly was!
- Transition to School Guide for ECE (PDF 5.1 MB) – a guide which highlights the importance of ensuring a positive start to school for all children. It consists of two parts:
- Resource Handbook – guidance on supporting children to develop key skills and attributes.
- Learning Resources – sample learning experiences to support the delivery of educational programs for the transition to school.
Resources for Family Day Care educators
Formative assessment resources
What is formative assessment?
- An educational practice used to monitor children's learning to inform teaching and meet the individualised needs of children.
- The Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) identifies assessment as :
- 'the process of gathering and analysing information as evidence about what children know, can do and understand. It is part of an ongoing cycle that includes planning, documenting and evaluating children's learning'.
- Ongoing formative assessment is a component of Quality Area 1 of the National Quality Framework:
|Element 1.1.3||Program learning opportunities||All aspects of the program, including routines, are organised in ways that maximise opportunities for each child’s learning.|
Assessment and planning cycle
Each child’s learning and development is assessed or evaluated as part of an ongoing cycle of observation, analysing learning, documentation, planning, implementation and reflection.
Critical reflection on children’s learning and development, both as individuals and in groups, drives program planning and implementation.
Why formative assessment?
- It assists educators in understanding where a child is on their developmental journey.
- It can help shape how educators:
- communicate a child's developmental needs
- recognise these needs at transition points, such as transition to school
- facilitate positive learning experiences.
- The assessments can be documented for inclusion in a child's Transition to School statement and will work to support the transition to school process.
- It can support children who experience disruption in their learning and provide an opportunity to assess the additional supports that they may need in the ECE service or at school.
What does formative assessment look like?
- The key components of formative assessment are:
- planning and designing a learning environment to meet a child's needs and to build upon their strengths;
- documenting evidence of what children know, understand and can do; and
- identifying and informing educators of a children's areas of strength and areas of need.
- Formative assessment tools take a variety of forms including structured and unstructured practices that are adaptable to the need of educators and children.
- Formative assessment can be both a qualitative and quantitative method of assessment.
Formative assessment resources pack
- NSW preschool assessment study: review of formative assessment practices in early childhood settings (PDF, 13.1MB) – a report by Macquarie University which explores the ways NSW early childhood educators are using formative assessment in the services, to identify and plan for the individual learning needs of children to support a strong transition to school.
- Formative assessment practices in early childhood settings: evidence and implementation in NSW – a research brief by CESE which contains guidance for educators on how this research could be used to inform their teaching practices. It also has a number of case studies to illustrate this guidance..