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Information for New Entrant Children & Their Parents

Information for New Entrant Children  


As a school we believe in the importance of trying to help out wherever possible to make the transition from preschool to school a smooth one for children about to turn 5. As a staff, we believe that Lake Rerewhakaaitu School is an ideal environment for children to start their schooling because we are a small rural school with 4 classrooms. In this sort of environment each child is known by all the staff and children in the school. The way we operate our school means we often have our senior children and other classes interacting with the younger children, so there is a nurturing atmosphere in the school. Your child’s learning needs are quickly known and understood by both the class teacher and senior management (Principal and Deputy Principal) because we are a small school. This also means we can ensure support and communication with the home is established as soon as needs are identified. If you are interested in enrolling your child at Lake Rerewhakaaitu School, please do not hesitate to make a time to meet with the Principal and take a look around the school to find out more!


You and your child are invited come and experience a taste of life in a New Entrant classroom at Lake Rerewhakaaitu in preparation for starting school.


We recommend three to four school visits in the 6 weeks leading up to your child starting school.


  • School visit times Mondays and Fridays between 9.00am and 12.30pm, please let Michele Terrell know if you and your child will be visiting. Caregivers MUST stay on the school property during preschool visits.


Depending on the individual you may like to build up to this length of time.

Please make contact with Michele Terrell (Room 2 teacher & Junior School leader) to arrange visits.


Why are school visits important?

School visits are important for the following reasons.  They help to familiarise your child with the routines of the classroom and school.  They help your child to become comfortable with the school environment.  They help to make the transition to school positive experience.

Please bring your child’s school bag, hat, a snack and a drink so your child can have morning tea with the school children. Parents must stay with children during school visits.


Getting your child ready for school

On entry to a New Entrant class, it would be helpful if your child is able to: Recognise their own name.

Hold a pencil correctly.

Write their own name e.g. Tommy ( not all capitals)

Recognise some letter names and/or sounds.

Count to 10 or more and understand some simple maths concepts i.e. on, in, under, through, etc

Recognise shapes by name.

Recognise colours.

Pack their bags and take responsibility for their own clothing.


The First Day as a New Entrant

This is an exciting day in a child’s life. It only happens once. It is really important that all goes well and that your child has a happy and enjoyable day. It can be emotional day for parents. We understand this and want it be a memorable day for all. We recommend that parents bring their child into the classroom on the first day. Feel free to take photos etc. Present going to school as something positive that your child should be excited about. Some children will bounce into school and be totally independent, while others may need support. Don’t hang around any longer than necessary. New Entrant teachers are skilled cuddlers and consolers. We will contact you if your child is upset.


Supporting Your Child

During their first year at school. Room 2 is always open to parents. Feel free to meet informally with Michele when you are dropping off or picking up your child. More formal parent teacher interviews are usually held on Thursday afternoons (one interview per term per child for term 1,2, & 3).


Oral language is very important as it is the foundation of all literacy. It is a good forum for children to share their learning and a way for them to be show how clever they are if reading and writing is taking a while. We encourage you to talk, talk, talk with your children. Encourage discussions and questions around their creative play and also while you move through your daily family routines. Read and listen to stories together, explore rhyme and rhythm through poems and funs songs.


Teach them independence:

  • packing their own bag  

  • dressing themselves  

  • choosing own clothes  

  • coming into the classroom


Allow them to take risks when learning new things. They will get things wrong but that is just part of the learning journey.

Celebrate and enjoy their successes.

Develop,encourage and celebrate their interests and strengths.

Model respect and collaboration to your child.

Stay positive and promote their self esteem.



Here is a shared big book for you and your child to enjoy about our school and classroom: 

Lake Rerewhakaaitu School Big Book


You may find more information in our booklet for new entrant tamariki and their whanau:

Information for new entrant tamariki and their whanau


Pre Schools:

If you are new to our area are a few pre school options within reasonable travel distances to Rerewhakaaitu:


Rerewhakaaitu Playcentre (Ash Pit Road, Opposite school)

Current President: Rachel Haskew


Reporoa Kindy / Central kids:  http://www.centralkids.org.nz/reporoa-kindergarten/


A very useful link about NZ Education for parents : 
https://parents.education.govt.nz/early-learning/



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