School Readiness and the Characteristics of Effective Learning
The Essential Guide for Early Years Practitioners
This guide to understanding school readiness in young children is essential reading for early years practitioners. It explores the concept of school readiness by unpicking what the term means for children and how we can define it in the context of the characteristics of effective learning. This includes ideas for promoting playing and exploring, active learning and creating and thinking critically. The book also considers how we can ensure schools are ready to receive children and suggests ways in which preschools and nurseries can work collaboratively with schools and engage parents and carers to ensure a smooth transition.
The aim of this book is to contribute to the debate, while putting children's needs and considerations very much at the forefront, and acknowledging all of the key players - school, setting, policy makers, parents, children, press...
But most of all children are central to the discussion because they are the ones who will be starting school and undergoing major changes in their daily routine and in the expectations placed on them. They will need high levels of wellbeing, self-awareness, self-esteem to cope with these changes... This is an excellent book.
This book eloquently explores the often misused and rarely understood concept of school readiness by understanding that this involves more than achieving learning goals. By considering preparations for formal teaching methods to be rooted in the Characteristics of Effective Learning, Tamsin brings these concepts to life through personal anecdotes and illustrative case studies in ways immediately familiar to any practitioner.
This book provides an invaluable guide to understanding the vexed and contested term of 'school readiness'. By framing it within the 'Characteristics of Effective Learning' it shapes an authentic context for what should underpin definitions of achievement in the EYFS. Its successful balance of practically grounded theory and real life exemplification make it a formidable contribution to the debate.
Tamsin Grimmer is an experienced consultant and trainer, a director of Linden Learning and a lecturer in Early Years at Bath Spa University. She is based in Wiltshire, UK.
2. Defining School Readiness
3. The Starting School Lottery
4. The Characteristics of Effective Learning
5. Playing and Exploring
6. Active Learning
7. Creating and Thinking Critically
8. Children Who Are Ready
9. Children-ready Schools
10. Settings Supporting Children
11. Engaging Parents and Carers
12. What Next? Creating Lifelong Learners
Appendix A: 'I can jigsaw' and 'My Super Skills for School
Appendix B: Notes and action planning
Appendix C: Children-ready schools
Appendix D: Settings supporting children
Appendix E: Books about starting school
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