THE BLOG
24/08/2018 15:25 BST | Updated 24/08/2018 15:25 BST

Five Steps To Ensure Your Child Is School-Ready

Preschool children should be encouraged to clear up after themselves and put their clothes away

Sydney Bourne via Getty Images

With September around the corner, in just a few weeks, parents around the country will be sniffling at the school gates, as they wave off their babies starting their first day at school.

While some worry about separation anxiety and others how they will juggle the new work-life balance and early pick-up’s, a far more worrying prospect is at hand….

The latest findings from Ofsted’s chief inspector Amanda Spielman has highlighted the concerning rising number of children starting school who lack basic hygiene and communications skills.

As a result, these children are starting school on the back foot, at a vital time in their education. Furthermore, the findings reveal that it may waste more than a million hours per year in teaching time, as teaching staff have to make up time helping to assist and clean the children, notably following visits to the bathroom.

Now, the woman who calls herself ‘Supernanny’ has waded in to the debate, declaring on her twitter page that parents have become “lazy” and “enabling” by not teaching children the life skills they need.

Her full tweet reads:

So, what can parents’ to do help? Here’s five helpful pointers to help families ensure their kids are school ready...

1. Read More

Let’s start with speech. It has long been advocated that reading to your child can help improve their vocabulary and speech. The NHS also suggests that you can support your child by helping them build sentences. If they just say one or two words, then help them form a sentence by repeating the correct phrase back to them.

2. Encourage independence

Although it’s not always easy to relinquish control to your child, encouraging them to dress themselves, tie their shoe laces, or pack their own bag is a step in the right direction. By encouraging them to take control, you’re fostering independence and teaching them to learn for themselves.

3.Prepare their own lunchbox

Children’s mealtimes can often be fraught, but getting kids to make their own sandwiches (with your help) and packing their own lunchbox helps prepare them for ‘big school’. Knowing they achieved it all by themselves can be motivating too.

4. Clean Up

Preschool children should be encouraged to clear up after themselves and put their clothes away. This fosters the right kind of behaviour which can benefit them in a class environment.

5. Bathroom ready

Children should be out of nappies before they start school, yet the alarming truth is that as many as one in six kids are still not toilet trained by time they start education. Parents should be mindful of how this could set their child back, and aim to have them potty trained in good time for school, to overcome avoidable mishaps.

Sophia Walker is a leading parent blogger for milkdrunkdiary, follow her @milkdrunkdiary on social media, as well as www.milkdrunkdiary.com