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School Readiness

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					Why does it matter?

What is it exactly?

Focus on Child

Focus on Parent

Kindergarten Transition
Benefits: Lasting positive attitude towards
school; social, emotional and cognitive
benefits

Low levels: Persistent difficulty in school,
behavior problems, social
maladjustment
Drop-Out Rates (20-24yr olds)



                                        Norway: 4.6%



            Canada: 10%
            Québec: 13%
            7 of 10 drop-outs are men
Unemployment rate of drop-outs is
double that of other 20-24 year olds




                               Statistics Canada
Picture 2 children: One who is ready to
start Kindergarten, and one who is not
Ongoing debate
   Labelling kids with static attributes
   Laying blame
   Measure-driven instruction
   Value academic skills at the expense of others


Communities define school readiness
CARES (Community Attitudes on
Readiness for Entering School)




                    Piotrkowski, Botsko, & Matthews (2000)
General Readiness
› Health, peer relations, communication, emotional
  maturity, self-care, interest & engagement, motor
  skills


Classroom-Related Readiness
› Communicates in language of the
  classroom, compliance with teacher
  authority, compliance with classroom
  routines, basic and advanced knowledge
Examples:
  Is rested and
  well-nourished
  Asks a lot of questions
  about how and why
  Stacks 5-6 blocks
  by him/herself
Kindergarten
teachers were
more likely to
value health,
and placed
less emphasis
on motor skills
Overall, parent
expectations tend to
be much higher
Kindergarten teachers
place an emphasis on
compliance to
teacher and
classroom routine
Preschool teachers
tend to value basic
and advanced
knowledge more than
Kindergarten teachers
Important to establish a ‘shared vision’
Our definition of school readiness:
 1) Physical-Motor

  2) Social-Emotional

  3) Cognition and
     Language
Age
› Differences usually
  disappear within the first
  few years of school
› Poverty: 13 x higher risk
› Knowing the child




                               Duncan et al., 2007
Gender
› Perceptions

› Behaviour

› Academics
Movement is the child’s first language


                  Attention

                  Balance

                  Coordination
                                  Blythe, 2000
Gross Motor




› Running, jumping, hopping
› Czechoslovakia: Test for Motor Skills
› Precursor to Fine Motor
Fine Motor


             Painting, cutting,
             holding a pencil

             Strong link to
             developing
             attention
Ask yourself:
› (a) Does the child tend to learn better with older
  peers?


› (b) Does the child enjoy interacting with older
  children?


› (c) Is she or he easily hurt by not being able to
  perform as well academically (and physically) as
  her or his peers?


                                        Duncan et al., 2007
What do you do to promote physical and
motor development in your classroom?
          Take home message

Motor skills provide one outward sign of
           neurological maturity

A child who is in control of his/her body is
 more equipped to interact with the world



                                    Blythe, 2000
“A group of children are playing Red Rover
at a birthday party, and John wants to join
them. He asks nicely, several times. Heather
stops playing, but before John can take her
place Michael jumps in. John tells Michael
that he was waiting and was next in line to
play. Michael says “Too bad!” and John
starts to cry. Daniel sees this and offers John
his place in the game.”


                                     Schiller, 2009
John:
 - Waited for his turn
 - Asked to join
 - Doesn’t hit or kick
 - Expresses his
   frustration
Social Intelligence
› Assess the feelings of others
› Relate to the feelings, motives
  and concerns of others
› Read and respond to social
  cues
› Negotiate and resolve conflict




                      Schiller, 2009
Emotional
Intelligence
› Identify and label
  feelings
› Manage and express
  feelings
› Delay gratification



               Schiller, 2009
Confidence
Curiosity
Intentionality
Self-Control
Relating to Others
Communication
Cooperation
                     Schiller, 2009
Confidence
› Feeling of emotional security that results from
  faith in oneself; a firm belief in one’s powers,
  abilities, or capacities
Curiosity
› An intense desire to
  know and
  understand;
  disposition to inquire,
  investigate, or seek
  after knowledge
Intentionality
› Acting with intention on a course of action
Self-Control
› The ability to control one’s
  emotions, desires, or
  actions by one’s own will;
  staying calm and
  productive during high-
  stress situations
Relating to Others
› The act of being connected, related
Communication
› A process by which
  information is
  exchanged by
  individuals through a
  common system of
  symbols, signs, or
  behavior
Cooperativeness
› A willingness and
  ability to work with
  others
Tying it all together
› Early behaviour
  dispositions are often
  lasting
› Link to friendship
  quality


› Impact of adversity in relationships
    Transient vs. Chronic
What can you do to promote social and
emotional intelligence in your
classroom?
Confidence
Curiosity
Intentionality
Self-Control
                     1)Model
Relating to Others   2)Discuss
Communication        3)Practice
Cooperation          4)Acknowledge
                     5)Reflect Schiller, 2009
        Take home message

School readiness is much more than
          academic ability

  Social-emotional intelligence is an
important factor in developing attention
       skills and relationship skills
Cognition
› Working memory and attention
Language
› Associated
  frustrations

› Timing of language
  difficulty




                       Justice et al., 2009
What are some of the things that you can
do in your classroom to promote
cognition and language?
         Take home message

School readiness is more than a specific
       skill set (math and reading)

      Language issues should be
         addressed early on
Quebec Longitudinal Study of Child
Development (1998-2010)
School Readiness (EDI)
› Physical health and well-being
› Social competence
› Emotional maturity
› Language and cognitive development
› Communication skills and general
  knowledge



Vocabulary
Non-verbal cognitive skills
Measure of school readiness was more
important than vocabulary and cognitive
skills put together (24% vs. 18%)

Gender differences

Family income
Interactions:

1) Physical-Motor
2) Social-Emotional
3) Cognition and
  Language
1) Personality
2) Attitudes and
  expectations
3) Situational influences on
  parents psychological
  state
4) Actual or perceived
  characteristics of the
  child
Sensitive parenting

Adaptability

Self-efficacy
Informal theories on development

Expectations
Stress and availability
of emotional support
Perceptions from
infancy

Perceived vs. Actual
Child Characteristics
Three different therapy groups:
1) Control group
2) Talk about parent-child relationship
3) Talk about relationship between parents
2) Parent-child:
› Better parenting




3) Parent-parent:
› Better quality relationship AND better
  parenting
What can you do to help support the
parents from your classroom?
        Take home message

    Share in the child’s successes

Have open conversations about school
            expectations

  Happy parents are good parents;
      know local resources
Sense of discontinuity
Anxiety
Child change in identity
Teacher attitude
› Promoting parental
  involvement



Orientation meetings,
information packages,
staggered entry
Become knowledgeable about local
schools and entrance policies
What can you do to help support the
child’s (and the parents’) transition into
to Kindergarten?
         Take home message

  Become a resource for the parents

Help children to understand their future
role as Kindergarten students, build their
          sense of competence

              Be positive
Take a minute to look back at your
original definition of school readiness

How has it changed?

How can you start implementing change
in your classroom?
  Resources



www.skc-ecd.ca
www.rsc-dje.ca
www.child-encyclopedia.com
www.enfant-encyclopedie.com
Pam Schiller (2009)
“Seven Skills for School Success: Activities
  to Develop Social and Emotional
  Intelligence in Young Children”

Website:
http://www.cdesign.com.au/fdc2009/pag
  es/PDF_handout_Social_Emotional.pdf

				
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