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Unit 1. School environment.

Introduction.

How to help a toddler adjust to preschool.

Getting a toddler to adjust to preschool can be very hard. Many toddlers don’t want to leave their mums and won’t
interact with other kids, and just cry. The first days at school are quite tough for children, parents and teachers. Some
schools give the parents some advice that will help them to handle this situation. The better the parents train their kids
the easier it will be for you, as a teacher, to manage your students these days. Here is some advice you can offer the
parents.

Tips for parents

1. Have your child visit before their first day. Have them go with you to the school before the first day: visit the
facilities, introduce them to their teacher and have a chat with them, if possible.

2. Let them go alone. Have them go in as if it’s a regular day. At the gate or door (this will vary with each preschool),
give them a hug and leave. Even if they are crying don’t stay with them until they calm down, it won’t work because
they’ll become too attached to you.

3. Greet them happily at pickup time. At pickup time, ask questions such as, “Who did you play with?” or “What did
you do today?” make sure not to ask them “Will you come back tomorrow?” because they might think that they don’t
have to, and possibly say no.

4. Keep bringing them back. Keep taking the child even if they cry every day when you drop them off or when you
pick them up only stop if it’s been a month and they still are crying. But be patient, because it could take a child two
days or two weeks to get used to preschool.

5. Play school. Before even signing them up for preschool, play school with them to give them the feeling of preschool.
There are also loads of books for children that deal with this issue.

6. Go on outings. Before starting school, have them go on outings without you, such as shopping with their aunt or a
neighbour so they won’t be attached to you and get used to being with another person different to you.

7. Punishment. Don’t punish them if they cry after preschool! That will make the child even more upset about
preschool.

8. Toys. Don’t let them bring toys, such as a stuffed animal, to school even if they are closely attached to them. That can
cause trouble with other children.

PRESCHOOLS IN UK AND USA

UNITED KINGDOM

-Childcare centres/ playgroups (up to 5 years old) focus on child care and social interaction.
-Nursery schools/ preschool nursery classes in primary schools (from 3 to 5 years old) have a specific curriculum.
Each 3-year-old child in the UK is entitled to 15 hours of free pre-school education per week.

THE UNITED STATES

-Daycare focuses on childcare, they don’t teach a specially designed curriculum. They operate from 6/7h in the
morning until 6/7h in the evening. A good option por working parents.
-Preschool (up to 5 years old) have a specific curriculum. They teach the children language, maths and social skills to
begin kindergarten. They have a part time schedule, they only open a few hours in the morning or in the afternoon or
some days a week.
-Kindergarten (between 5 and 6 years old) follows preschool and isn’t compulsory but it is recommended. It prepares
children for school.
EXERCISE 1. TRUE OR FALSE. Answer true or false to these statements.

STATEMENT TRUE FALSE


If the kid starts crying, parents should stay with their kids until they settle down.
When they collect the child from school, parents should ask them if they would like to go
back next day.
Before starting school kids should spend some time without their parents.
If a child cries after school, parents must be understanding and caring.
Parents shouldn’t allow kids to take toys to school because they can get broken or lost.

EXERCISE 2. MATCH THE EXPRESSIONS. Match the expressions on the left with the words on the right.

He’s a new born baby He’s 24


He’s a toddler He’s 9
He’s an infant He’s 15 months
He’s a child He’s 1 week old
He’s an adult He’s 15 years
He’s a teenager He’s 6 years

READING EXERCISES

EXERCISE 1. NURSERY REGISTRATION

In most western countries in order to register for a nursery school, parents must follow an application procedure. Many
schools have open days and evenings where you can meet the teachers and see the children work or you can make an
appointment to visit the school at any other time. Once families have made up their minds on what school is the best
choice they have to pay a non-refundable application fee. Later on families are notified or accepted to the school. If
their application is turned down because all placements are filled they stay in a waiting list in case new spaces arise
throughout the school year.

In order to get acquainted with this kind of documents you are going to work on a sample application form.
Task – The headings of the different parts of the application form have been removed. According to the information
provided you have to write the suitable heading.

Behaviour/Habits - Sleeping habits - Speech - Eating habits - Health - Immunizations - Personal details

1. _______________________________
Child’s name _____________ Name child is to be called ___________________
Father’s name/ Guardian (1) ____________________
Mother’s name/ Guardian (2) _____________________
Mobile phone (1)___________ Mobile phone (2)_______________
Work phone No (1)______________ Work phone No (2)________________
Home Adress___________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Other children in family:
Name____________________ Age___________
Name____________________ Age___________
Status of parents
___married ___divorced ___ never married
___separated ___living together ___ widow
Custody/Visiting arrangements (please attach copy of current custody papers)
2. _______________________________
Does your child have any allergies that we should be aware of? If yes, please describe __________________________
Does your child eat dinner___alone___with family___with sibling___with sitter
Is your child able to use cutlery? Yes___ No___
3. ________________________________
What time does your child go to bed?___________
What time does your child wake up?____________
Does your child suffer from bed-wetting?Yes___ No___ When did it start?__________ How often?__________
Does your child take a nap? Yes___ No___ For how long? ___________
4._________________________________
Is he/she a late talker? Yes___ No___ What age did he start to talk?__________
Is your child’s vocabulary large? Yes___ No___
Does your child speak clearly? Yes___ No___
Are there other languages spoken in the house? Yes___ No___
What languages? __________
5. _________________________________
Does your child have temper tantrums?___ If yes, what do you normally do to calm him down?__________________
What does he do? _____________________________
Does your child use a dummy during the day? If yes, on what occasions? ____________________________________
Is your child fully toilet trained?
Fully___ nearly___ not at all___
Does you child have any habits that we should be aware of? ______________________________________________
6. _________________________________
Does your child take regular medication?_________________
If yes, specify medicine and please, attach medical prescription __________________________________________
Does your child have any allergies? If yes, please describe___________________________________________
7._________________________________
We require that all children have completed the primary series of immunizations before enrollment.

DTP/Dtap Dates_________
POLIO Dates_________
HIB Dates_________
HEP B Dates_________
MEASLES VAC Dates_________
MUMPS VAC Dates__________
VARICELLA Dates__________
OTHER_____________________

____________ ______________
Physician’s sign Parent’s sign

To further knowledge
An application form is the most important form parents need to fill out but there are other forms:
a. Child pick up form where the names of the people who are allowed to collect the child from the school are listed.
No child will be allowed to leave the school unless they leave with someone in the list or the parents provide a signed
note or phone call.
b. Medical form In this form, immunizations and the physical condition of the child are stated. It must be signed by the
physician and the parent.

EXERCISE 2. IMMUNIZATION. Match the expressions on the left with the words on the right.

HIB Varicela
HEP B Sarampión
MEASLES Difteria, Tétanos, Pertussis
MUMPS Hepatitis B
CHICKENPOX Bacteria causante de Meningitis
DTP/ DTap Paperas

EXERCISE 3. VOCABULARY. Complete the following sentences with a suitable Word or expression from the list

- Had a tantrum - Takes a nap - bedwetting - toilet trained - nursery school

1. Justin is nearly three now. He’ll soon be able to go to __________ and I’ll be able to go back to work.
2. My toddler doesn’t sleep much at night, however, she __________ in the afternoon.
3. Most children are not fully __________ until they are 3 years old.
4. My daughter __________ because I didn’t get her the chocolate bar she wanted.
5. __________ is a common problem for millions of young children.

Grammar. Auxiliary verbs. Verb tenses. Present tenses

At first sight it’s important to know, that in English there are only three auxiliar verbs, that means those verbs can act as
main verbs if they are followed by something that functions as an object in the sentence, or they can act as auxiliar
verbs if they are followed by another verb, in which case they would have another meaning. The three verbs that can
work as main or as auxiliar are Do, Be and Have.

In first place we have Do, that, as a main verb it means “Doing something for what you must use you mind more than
your hands” in other words, “do is for anything that is not physical”. And followed by a simple verb, Do has no
meaning, it only indicates if the sentence is in the Present, in the past, if the sentece is affirmative or negative.