Preparing Your Child For Year 7
The prospect of sending your child to secondary school is full of mixed emotions, some children are completely ready, and others may be a bit more anxious about the change to a larger environment, and older students. It can be a big step and it's never too soon to start preparing. So here are our top tips on preparing your child to transfer from primary to secondary school.
Before Your Child Starts Secondary School
- Help them to become more independent. In Year 6, encourage your child to start walking to school on their own, or doing small trips to local shops, this will help to increase their confidence and yours.
- Practice the route to college. During the August holidays, start to practice the walk to school, allowing them to do it on their own at some point. If travelling on the bus, take the route a few times there AND back so they know where to catch the bus and get off. Remember there will be other students travelling with them and they will all help each other! Talk through any scenarios they may face and how to keep safe. Showing you're confident in their abilities will help them to feel they are.
- Find a friend. Is there someone who lives locally that your child can walk to school with on the first day or get the bus with? Can they arrange to meet someone at break / lunch time to check on each other if they are not in the same class?
- Get organised. If you have everything in place, it will help your child. Make sure you have:
- Filled in and returned all the forms sent to you by college by the deadlines,
- Ordered lockers,
- Put money on WisePay for their lunches (we use a cashless system in college), and talk about making healthy and varied choices for lunch, and how much they can spend each day of food and snacks from the canteen. See information about Catering and free school meals here .
- Provided contact details and email addresses so you can be kept up to date of any information,
- Order and purchase school uniform and what they will need in their new big strong school bag in advance. Click here for information about our uniform.
- Purchased your child's Chromebook. Click here for further information about our Chromebook for Learning Scheme.
- Applied for school buses in plenty of time if required you can find out more here Surrey County Council Transport. If they have a bus pass make sure they know what to do with it and to keep it safe.
- Make sure they practice tying their tie - they will need to do this at speed after PE.
- Label everything - things get lost - expect things to be left in lockers, around the school or even the bus, you may well get them back if it's labelled.
- Try to help your child deal with any concerns about moving to secondary school. Talking through issues and concerns with your child will help build their confidence, and give them the support in coping with the anxiety they may be feeling. Ask them
- What are you most looking forward to in your new school?
- Are you worried about anything to do with joining your new school?
- What will you miss the most about your old school?
- Making friends - Encourage your child to try to make new friends and perhaps be kind by making the first effort, especially if they see someone on their own who may be shy or unsure. Remind them that everyone is feeling the same way about starting a new school.
- Look out for signs of stress, for instance if your child loses their temper or is more irritable than normal. Try to be patient and work out how you can help .... sometimes they may just want to express their worries.
Many of the questions you may have might be answered by looking through the information provided by the College or on the website. Have a look at the Frequently Asked Questions page.
When your child has started secondary school - they may need a little extra help to get into their new routines, there is a lot to remember.
- Eat breakfast - ensure they have eaten a good breakfast it will help them stay alert and give them enough energy to get to lunch time!
- Create new routines - encourage your child to pack their bag themselves every evening, working through their new timetable with them and helping them to work out what they will need. Check if they also need their PE kit the next day.
- Timetables - the two week timetable and getting around school can be a bit daunting
- Initially, help your child to understand how their new timetable works by looking at the video here where it is explained. It will be explained again when they start school. Year 7 spend lots of their lessons in the Larch Building away from the rest of the school to help them to settle in to their new routines.
- Make a few copies of the timetable, one for their bag, and one for home.
- Planners/Homework - each student is provided with a planner to write in all their homework and for parents to put messages for Tutors.
- Initially, whilst they get the hang of it, go through their timetable and planner at the end of the school day. Talk through each lesson encouraging them to add any homework and deadlines/ reminders in their planner before they forget and so that you can find out how they are getting on!
- When they pack their bags ask them if they have any homework to hand in and ensure it is in their bags or if they have submitted it online.
- Ask for help - remind them that they need never be afraid to ask for help or to talk to someone they trust, like their tutor if they are concerned about anything.
- Extra-Curricular - encourage your child to try out music and sports clubs. You can find out more here
www.BBC.com/startingsecondaryschool - offers support, tips and advice from busting myths about secondary school teachers to dealing with embarrassing parents, copying with classwork and worries about losing old friends and making new ones.
Remind your child that no-one is expecting them to know everything about their new school, teachers and support staff will be helping them learn new routines and will be happy to answer any questions.
If you think your child moving to secondary school means you won't be as involved with your school community, there are still ways to engage:
- Make sure you attend any events, they are always a great place to meet other parents. Click here for our Year 6 - 7 transition information and key dates
- Join the Friends of Christ's College to help raise funds for the College and attend their events Friends of Christ's College.
- Join the Christ's College Prayer Group which meets every Monday at 2.00pm. Click here for our Parents Prayer Group page.
- Volunteer when asked by College for support - perhaps to read with students, or help with events.
- Support Extra Curricular Activities.
- Get in touch with our Careers Lead Mr Annan Email: firstname.lastname@example.org to talk about your job as part of our careers talks. Find out more about Careers at Christ's College.
- Follow the @Christ's College Guildford Facebook account for updates and what's happening in College, but you can also join the various parents Facebook Groups associated with the school.