Many of our children come from Effingham and Little Bookham, but we also regularly have children joining us from Bookham, Fetcham, East & West Horsley, Ockham and Cobham. Some of our children know other children from having attended the same pre-school or daycare nursery, but even if children arrive at school not knowing anybody, we find that they all settle in and make new friends very quickly.
In the summer term, the Early Years class teacher visits children at their pre-school. We also offer the opportunity for children and parents to visit the school so that they can start to make friends and get used to our school environment.
Events typically include our Summer Fair and visits to the classroom, with and without their parents. Where parents are asked to leave their children, they are invited for coffee with the Head and Early Years Leader, so are still close at hand.
An information evening is held for parents, giving them an opportunity to meet the class teacher and other key school staff and spend time in the Early Years classroom. At this time parents receive an Education Information Pack about the EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage) at St Lawrence School and will have the opportunity to sign up for for a home visit which will take place during the first few days of the autumn term.
When children start school for the first time in September, we find that introducing the children into school in small groups means they can have lots of attention and help during their first day at school; lunchtime especially can be challenging for the new children and the small groups plus parent involvement ensure we can give them the extra support they need.
A child is not required by law to start school until the term after their 5th birthday and parents have the choice of their child starting at that point or they can discus their options with the Head Teacher.
Children in the Early Years class will initially have playtime separately from the rest of the Lower School. They will take part in Lower School playtimes when the class teacher feels they are ready. We are aware that this can be a daunting experience for younger children, but also that children often like to socialise with older or younger siblings at this time. We actively encourage older children to help the younger ones with reading and other activities so that the new children quickly feel that they have friends throughout the school community.
If you have any questions about your child starting school please do not hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to help.