Education Transitions

Tabled: 18 March 2015

Appendix A. Transition activities in the early years

'Promising practices' is the term used in the Department of Education and Training's guidance materials for strategies, programs and approaches designed to support positive transitions for children.

Figure A1
Observed transition activities in the early years—Promising practices by phase of transition

Practice idea

Preparation phase

Transfer phase

Induction phase

Consolidation phase

Reciprocal visits—for children

  • School tours by parents and children.
  • Regular site visits throughout the year by kindergarten teacher and children to local primary school(s).
  • Prep transition sessions at the school—varying from two to eight sessions in terms three and/or four.
  • Extra Prep transition sessions for children with additional needs.
  • Prep orientation day.

Reciprocal visits— for educators

  • Site visits by Prep teacher to kindergartens.
  • Site visits by kindergarten teachers to schools.

Transition statements and meetings

  • Preparation of Transition Learning and Development Statements by kindergarten teachers.
  • Transfer, with parent consent, of transition statement to primary schools.
  • Site visits by Prep teachers to main feeder kindergartens to discuss children.
  • Phone call by Prep teacher to kindergarten teacher to discuss areas of concern for individual children.

Joint professional development

  • Local council facilitated forum for kindergarten and Prep teachers for networking and information sharing.

Local transition networks

  • Annual child health assessments undertaken by a range of specialists, with results reported to families and the kindergarten.
  • Transition networks of primary and kindergarten teachers focused on improving information sharing.
  • Regular clinic run at the school by local paediatric specialist.

Buddy programs

  • Selection and preparation of older school children as 'buddies' for new Prep students.
  • Introduction of each prospective Prep student to their buddy during the Prep transition session.
  • Prep/Year 5 buddy program commences with shared weekly activities.
  • Buddy program continues.

Family involvement

  • Parent input into, and consent for providing, transition statement to primary schools.
  • Kindergarten information nights and informal discussions with parents on their child's readiness for school.
  • Parent information sessions and social activities during Prep transition days.
  • Parent social activities during Prep orientation day.
  • Prep interviews for parents and children.
  • Family Liaison Officer supporting parents.
  • Parent-teacher interviews.
  • Parents trained as helpers.
  • Parent forums on relevant topics.
  • Parent input into Student Support Groups and learning plans for children with extra needs.

Learning programs responsive to children

  • Activities run by kindergarten teachers that mimic school expectations and learning environment.
  • Preparation of program for students with disability applications.
  • Participation in activities that mimic school expectations and learning environment during transition sessions.
  • Identification of children that may have special needs—organise assessment.
  • 1:1 assessment of Prep students by teachers on academic and other outcomes.
  • Learning structured within play‑based learning approach.
  • Four day week for term one.
  • Monitoring of children's needs by classroom teachers and wellbeing staff.
  • Play-based/ structured‑learning program.
  • Student support groups for children with extra needs.
  • Classes for advanced students.

Social story‑boards

  • Children given photos of their Prep teacher, a school DVD and a postcard from their buddy to familiarise them with the new setting.

Community-level transition timetable

  • Network-wide transition day.

Source: Victorian Auditor-General's Office.

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