Early childhood classrooms today are diverse, and teachers work hard to make sure that every child thrives in an inclusive environment. However, it is common for young children who speak a different primary language to require some assistance with learning how to communicate during the first few weeks. Use these tips to help your child adjust to their new classroom so that they get the most out of their learning program.
Discuss the Classroom Routine
Preschools establish daily routines that help children know what to expect at different times of the day. For instance, your child may be called to a group activity at the beginning of the day that includes a story or song. Ask your child's teacher for a copy of the daily schedule and an explanation of any special procedures that your child will participate in during their school day. Then, talk to your child about these routines at home. You can also read stories together about preschool or watch videos. Knowing what to expect during the day helps your child seamlessly follow along until they have a better ability to understand the teacher's instructions in English.
By the time your child reaches the preschool level, they are ready to begin doing some things with greater independence. Depending upon your child's current abilities, you may want to help them learn how to do things such as clean up their toys, put on a jacket and use the restroom with little assistance. While your child's teacher is always ready to lend a helping hand, being able to do some things on their own helps ease the potential frustration that results from being unable to fully convey a need for help.
Teach Essential Words
While you may already be practicing English at home, your child will feel better at school if they know how to express serious needs. For example, you may want to teach your child essential words such as "restroom" or "water." Additionally, you may provide the teacher with the words that your child may use in their primary language so that there is an alternative method for communicating serious needs. If your child is still developing their speaking skills in both languages, then establishing a signal for help can ensure that your child never goes without something essential for their comfort.
Over the next few weeks, you can expect your child's English speaking skills to rapidly increase as they learn from their teacher and new friends. Until then, spending a little extra time making sure that your child is prepared for going to school independently helps them adjust to the program quickly. For more information, contact establishments like Sammamish Montessori School.