HELPING CHILDREN TRANSITION TO SCHOOL

We want to make a child's transition to The Kids' Place as smooth as possible. Teachers are available to assist families with the transition to and from school. Teachers and families discuss drop-off and pick-up routines.

Whether your child is coming to TKP for the first time or returning after a summer break, there are a number of things parents can do to ensure your child's successful transition to school:

1. Talk about school in a positive way and give your child examples of what types of activities he or she will enjoy at school. Let your child know that the teachers love children and plan exciting, fun activities.

2. Read books to your child that focus on starting school.

3. Get involved in TKP family events, work parties, field trips, and classroom activities. Through your participation, your child will sense your own enthusiasm for TKP.

4. Please let your child's teachers know about any issues that might impact your child throughout the year.

5. Refer to "Separation and Transition Strategies" resource information on TKP website.

CLASSROOM TRANSITIONS

Most children move up to a new classroom over the summer session or at the beginning of each school year. Children are eligible to move from one classroom to the next based on the following criterion:

1. Age: A child must be at least 2.5 years old to move from the Adventurers (1.5-2.5 year old group) to the Joyful Explorers (2.5-3.5 year old group). A child must be at least 3.5 years old to move from the Joyful Explorers (2.5-3.5 year old room) to the Imagineers (3.5-5 year old group).

2. Availability: There must be space available in the next age group.

3. Development: Teachers and parents discuss child readiness.

Teachers also facilitate the child's transition from one classroom to the next. Parents can follow guidelines listed above in the HELPING YOUR CHILD TRANSITION TO SCHOOL section.

TRANSITION TO OTHER CHILDCARE OR KINDERGARTEN

Teachers work closely with children and families to make a successful transition from one school to the next. Examples of transition support include: documenting developmental milestones a child has reached and collecting a child’s project work for parent pick-up. Transition support is done based on parent request.

GUIDANCE AND DISCIPLINE

At TKP we provide children with a consistent routine and safe environment in which to develop a sense of self and a love of learning. We work with parents to teach children to self-regulate emotions by using positive strategies and guiding children with clear expectations. Classroom expectations involve respect for others, for self, for property, and for the environment. As teachers model helping, caring, and thoughtful behaviors for the children, they encourage positive, responsible behavior. This consistent approach to discipline provides a secure environment in which a child can assess his/her own behavior and develop the ability to self-regulate.

TKP teachers also provide children with the opportunity to make behavior choices, predict consequences of their actions, and take responsibility for their decisions. They help children learn appropriate responses to use in conflict. Teachers may contact parents to develop a consistent home/school strategy as needed.

TOILETING

TKP will initiate toilet training when a child indicates readiness and after consulting with parents. Staff members work with families to coordinate efforts when your child shows interest in toilet training.

Families supply either cloth or disposable diapers and wipes. Soiled clothes and cloth diapers will be sent home in a bag labeled with the child’s name.  State law does not allow staff to rinse either clothes or diapers before bagging them, so please check your child’s cubby daily. 

DEVELOPMENTAL SCREENINGS

When a family enrolls at TKP, we ask parents to complete a one page developmental screening supplied by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Early identification of potential developmental delays is critical to help ensure that children get the resources they need to support positive development.  At TKP, developmental screenings are conducted for 100% of children within 90 days of enrollment.  Teachers and families meet to discuss screening results and questions within 30 days of screening completion. The screening is a checklist that documents where each child is at in the four primary developmental domains: social/emotional, language/communication, cognitive, and physical.

Occasionally we may recommend that a child be tested or checked for hearing or speech. Many community services are available locally.

VISITS TO THE KIDS' PLACE

Families are welcome and encouraged to visit their child(ren) at school and to check to see how their child is doing at any time. Families are also welcome to join children in classrooms and on field trips.

TIMELY ARRIVAL

You can help your child have a good start to the day by arriving and departing on time. Children benefit from knowing what is going to happen during school, and this information is discussed at morning snack or circle time beginning at about 9 am.

LATE PICK-UP

Children are picked up, signed-out by 12:30 pm for morning half day schedules and 5:30 pm for full-day schedules. We recognize that on rare instances you may be late due to an emergency. We ask that if you are going to be late, you call and let us know.

TKP reserves the right to add an additional $25 per half hour or portion of a half hour that child is picked-up late. TKP will notify you if we are going to charge for late pick-up.

DAILY ROUTINE AND DOCUMENTATION

Each classroom has a daily routine posted in the classroom and on the website. Teachers take notes and pictures to document your child's work. Documentation is posted at the sign-in/out bulletin board; in classrooms; emailed to families; and in the password protection portion of the website.

NAP TIME

All children staying for the afternoon rest after lunch.  Families provide a fitted crib sheet and a small blanket labeled with your child's name. A child can also bring a small pillow or stuffed animal. Families launder bedding weekly.

FIELD TRIPS

Parents are welcome to join field trips. Walking is the primary means of transportation for field trips. Teachers carry emergency medical information. If vehicles are used to transport children on field trips, each vehicle shall have an adult with first aid training, adequate motor vehicle liability insurance; drivers with valid driver's license; and first aid kits. All children five and under are required by law to be riding in a child restraint device. Occasionally children ride on city busses for field trips.

ABSENCES

If your child stays home for any reason on a regularly scheduled school day, please call the office in the morning to let us know. There is no refund for missed school days.

SHARING

Suggested Materials for Sharing:

  • Items found in nature
  • A favorite book
  • Musical instrument
  • Photograph

Goals for Sharing:

  • To continue a connection between home and school
  • To open an inquiry or hypothesis for testing. (I wonder if…or I want to know…)
  • To report to others about a unique discovery. (An instrument; a photograph of a rocket site visited; a bone found on a walk.)
  • To share in the discovery of a book.
  • To encourage new directions of expression and inquiry.

Sharing is one of the key elements of project work. Items from home to share should contribute to the curriculum.   

Please do not send toys and items from home that do not fit into the above sharing guidelines or that are not on the supply list. Please do not send action figures; fast food toys, movie or TV inspired characters and coloring books.

BIRTHDAY AND HOLIDAY CELEBRATIONS

Birthdays are special events! TKP will celebrate each child’s special day in a way that honors family traditions. Birthday celebrations could include a parent sharing a special story during the school day; playing a game or singing a song that has special significance to the child. TKP prefers no food or gifts are brought to school on birthdays.

Children and families are welcome to share their traditions.  Although TKP encourages children to practice universal values such as respect, courtesy and honesty, TKP does not teach any religion. Children may be invited to fall, winter, and spring themed parties at Oddfellows and Whitman College.