First days of school


  • Pack a lunch box each morning during the holidays. At lunch and afternoon tea, have your child sort out what he/she might eat at each break. Practice putting lids on bottles.
  • Keep lunch and afternoon tea to ‘just enough’. Wrap it so that it is easily undone by your child.
  • Keep toys at home. They may get lost, causing great upset and the school takes no responsibility for toys brought to school.
  • Encourage your child to use school toilets and to ask the teacher if they need to go to the toilet.
  • Children should carry their own bags and belongings and be responsible for putting these away in their classroom.
  • Label all belongings.
  • Discuss the idea of going to school everyday.

Just a reminder! The mornings of the first day of the year are very busy.

Teachers need to be able to respond to children immediately in these early days. If you wish to discuss anything with the teacher, it is important to make an interview time.

Eating times

  • Nutritious lunches are important. Sandwiches, crackers and cheese, dried fruit are ideal. Children can become tired and very teary if too many “treat” foods are included. We encourage you to send your child with a water bottle.
  • Plastic containers (named) are the most suitable. Check that your child can easily open the lunch container as well as packets you may also supply.
  • We suggest that foods that take a long time to eat or are difficult to peel may not be suitable. You may like to consider sending a quartered apple rather than a whole one or peeling oranges at home and re-wrapping them in the skin or plastic wrap.
  • We advise children to take home any food they can’t eat rather than putting it in the bin. This will let you know exactly what your child is or isn’t eating.
  • Pack spoons for yoghurt.
  • Do not send glass bottles to school.

If your child

  • Is tearful in the early days, take him/her to the teacher, firmly say goodbye, confirm arrangements for the afternoon and leave quickly without returning for ‘just another hug’. Often the tears are short lived and as the class settles down to work, your child becomes involved in class activities and forgets the upset. There are many instances where parents have spent an upset day only to greet their smiling and excited child at 3 o’clock.
  • Is teary and cranky in the early weeks, ensure that he/she is going to bed early as school days are long, hot and very active. Children tire easily until they adapt to their new routine.
  • Is teary and cranky in the early weeks, check that lunches are being eaten and that he/she is having enough water to drink.
  • Comes home with a worry, minimise his/her concerns until you can contact the teacher to clarify the situation. Try not to build the worry into something bigger for your child.
  • Your child needs to see your very positive attitude to school and to the class. With your daily assurance that everything is fine, children can approach the new experience of school with confidence.

Family involvement

Your interest in your child’s work will serve to keep your child interested and motivated. Discussing school events, good and bad, will also help your child understand.

If you have any questions or concerns, talk to the teacher or an administrator.

While teachers greatly appreciate parent helps in the classroom, parent helpers must operate under teacher direction. Classroom helpers are governed by the rules of confidentiality. They must not discuss the progress or ability of children outside the classroom.

When you are helping in the classroom, please appreciate that it may be different from the next classroom.

Last reviewed 02 March 2020
Last updated 02 March 2020