The first day of school can be a challenging day for both you and your child. Below are a few tips to help your child get ready for the first day of school, and to help your family adjust to the routine of school at INTL*.
1. Talk about INTL. Spend a short period of time every day before school starts to talk about their new school. Describe what the school will look like, how large the building is, the different classes, and what it will be like to have teachers who will take care of them throughout the day.
2. Talk about the different languages they will hear around the school. Explain how a bilingual school like INTL is a special place where people speak many languages, and that they have the exciting chance to begin to hear and speak those languages as well!
3. Explain that you will be bringing them to school, and that you will help them pack the backpack they will be bringing to school everyday. Remind your child that you will be back to pick them up at the end of the day.
4. Explain that there will be other children their same age in their classroom that they can become friends and share toys with.
5. At home, encourage your child to be independent, i.e. dressing, undressing, putting shoes on, going to the toilet and washing hands.
6. Encourage your child to ask the teacher for help if they need something. Emphasize that their teacher has your phone number to contact you if there is a need.
7. At home, share and read books together. Offer a variety of games and activities at home and encourage your child to clean up afterwards.
8. Be positive with your child; reassure them that school is fun and a wonderful place to be.
9. Share your child’s schoolwork with them and express your interest. Look at their work as though you understand it while your child tells you what it is in their language. A scribble may be a special moment in a family vacation! Try not to ask questions with “what” or “why”, instead ask open-ended questions such as “Tell me about your wonderful work.”
10. Ensure that your child eats a good diet and gets plenty of sleep, and realize they may be tired the first few weeks of school.
*In 2020, the International School of the Peninsula (ISTP) formally changed its name to Silicon Valley International School (INTL) to better reflect its bilingual programs, location, and international values.