Home/School Partnership (Early Intervention)
Children have done an enormous amount of learning by the time they go to school. Research shows that children do best when school and home are working together and parents/carers become active partners with the teachers in their child's learning.
Aberdeenshire Councils Early Intervention Team aims to provide excellent learning opportunities to strengthen and support children's success in education. It is involved in raising standards of achievement in literacy and numeracy in early years and for children up to the age of 14 by:
- Supporting school staff
- Encouraging the involvement of parents/carers in their children's early education
- Good School-Home Relations
- Working with Parents: Workshops
- Working with Parents: Learning Packs
- Home Reading Initiatives
- Home Reading Projects
We know that good school-home relations help parents to develop confidence in schools and contribute to supporting teachers. To support schools in developing this type of partnership approach to learning, schools are asked to extend their normal induction programme for pre-school children to include a number of Parent/Carer Workshops for those with children in their pre-school term.
Working together with parents to support children's learning is essential. Children spend a far greater proportion of their early years in the home than in the school environment and so it is vital that learning is addressed there.
The purpose of the workshops is to highlight to parents the importance of their role in supporting their child's learning and of the value of the activities that they can, and perhaps do, engage in with their children to encourage early literacy and numeracy skills.
Workshop titles may include:
- Environmental Print is all around us
- We love books
- We can draw and write
- Let's start to read
- Let's think about maths
Each highlights the value of recognising opportunities for developing skills and provides examples of activities that parents/carers might like to try with their children.
In addition to the parent workshops, schools provide Learning Packs for children to take home in the term preceding their entry to school.
These may include:
- A 'good' reading book
- A rhyme
- A game
- An item to improve motor co-ordination skills
- A picture to encourage discussion
Children and parents select a pack which is exchanged weekly/fortnightly. Parents have the opportunity for additional contact and passing of information between home and school. Learning Packs are sometimes available in a setting outside school where this is appropriate.
The better we are at reading, the easier life is.
- Learning to read is a very complex process and nobody really knows how it happens, but everyone agrees that reading is a very important skill.
- Parents and carers can do so much to help children become readers.
- Children who know that books are fun will be keen to learn when they begin school.
- Fluent readers do well in school, and their reading skills will stand them in good stead for the rest of their lives.
- Parents and carers can help by sharing books from baby days.
Supported by Scottish Executive funding we have set up several projects for parents and children to share reading activities at home.
We encourage schools to:
- Have their own Reading Champions - people who love to read
- Share great books
- Encourage families to share stories and books together and to visit the local library.
For ideas about games and activities to encourage children to read, visit www.literacytrust.org.uk/early_years
- Blokes and their Kids into Books
- Bags of Books
- Making Sense of Books
- Bilingual Tales
- Treasure Baskets
The project targets employees in their workplace to raise awareness of the importance of reading. It provides some resources for reading at home with the children in their family.
- To raise parents/fathers' confidence in their own contribution to their child's reading.
- To raise awareness of employers of their potential and role as reading champions.
(For more information about fathers' contribution to their child's education read this article on the BBC website)
The project aims to provide a series of take-home reading and activity bags for P5 children and parents/carers.
- To encourage participation by parents/carers in sharing responsibility for their child's reading.
- To encourage children, particularly boys, to read more.
The project targets families with children from nursery - S2 where parents/ carers have a sensory impairment. Story and poetry books in Braille and/or sets of books with tapes provide support to increase the amount of time that parents/carers share stories with their child.
- To break barriers of confidence - everyone has a story to tell and share.
- To develop awareness of the importance of stories and reading in the child's development.
For parents/carers and children with English as an Additional Language. Story and poetry books in the home language provide support to increase the amount of time that parents/carers share stories with their child.
- To empower parents/carers by building their capacity as storytellers/readers.
- To work jointly with families, family workers and receiving nurseries/schools.
The project provides a step-by-step introduction to story sharing skills for parents/carers amongst disadvantaged groups in partnership with pre-school settings, Family Centres, Nurseries and Aberdeenshire Library and Information Service.
- To provide opportunities for borrowing books in a familiar setting and encourage membership of library services
To build up a sense of everyone's ability to contribute by sharing stories.
Download the Home Reading Projects leaflet (pdf 362KB), complete with the full list of 'Aims'.
For further information please do not hesitate to contact the Early Intervention team at firstname.lastname@example.org