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School Readiness. What does this mean?

December 14, 2017

Starting school can be an extremely daunting and stressful time for both children and their parents.  The buildings are bigger, there are more children and they are the youngest in the playground. There are more rules to follow and the classroom setting is a lot more formal. 



There is a lot of hype around school readiness…. So what does this term mean?


School readiness refers to whether a child is ready to make a successful and easy transition into school. When it comes to school readiness many people think of academics, for example the ability to write their name or count to 10. In actual fact, school readiness is much more than just academics. It includes the ability to independently complete self care tasks such as opening lunch boxes, attention and concentration, sound physical skills including endurance to sit upright for extended periods, emotional regulation, language skills and play and social skills. 


Research demonstrates that school readiness can be actively facilitated with a little forward planning to ensure that children regularly participate in activities that develop the appropriate skills required to help optimal learning when they start school. 



What activities and tasks can be practiced to assist with school readiness?












  • Bierman, K. L., Domitrovich, C. E., Nix, R. L., Gest, S. D., Welsh, J. A., Greenberg, M. T., Blair, C., Nelson, K. E. and Gill, S. (2008), Promoting Academic and Social-Emotional School Readiness: The Head Start REDI Program. Child Development, 79: 1802–1817. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.2008.01227.x

  • Child and Youth Health. (2008). Starting School. Retrieved March 11, 2008 from http://www.cyh.com/HealthTopics/


  • Ramey, C. T. & Ramey, S. L. (2004). Early Learning and School Readiness: Can Early Intervention Make a Difference?Merrill-Palmer Quarterly 50(4), 471-491. Wayne State University Press. Retrieved December 14, 2017, from Project MUSE database.

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