Prep Information


Preparing for Prep from the DET

Preparing your child for the start of primary school will help them feel more confident about the big changes that are about to happen and what to expect at their new school.

In preparation for this important chapter, you can help your child to develop a love for learning so the move is a happy and positive one.

From the year before until the day they start school, there are a range of ways you can prepare your child for their new environment.


The year before school

In the year before your child starts primary school, you can begin to focus on different aspects of school life. Having discussions about school and encouraging your child to become more independent can help them better adjust to the new learning environment.

Things that you can do to help your child prepare include:

  • asking your child what they think about school
  • encouraging your child to ask questions about going to school
  • encouraging your child to do things on their own, such as dressing, washing their hands, going to the toilet, unwrapping their food, and opening their drink bottle
  • talking to friends and other families about what school is like
  • attending transition-to-school programs at your child’s new school
  • talking to the school about how you can be involved in your child’s life at school
  • talking to your child’s early childhood professional about other things you can do at home to help your child’s learning and development.


During the summer holidays

With school just around the corner, the summer holidays are a good time to reinforce what your child should expect on their first day at school.

Some things you can do for your child to help them prepare include:

  • Show your child where the school is and talk about how you will get there.
  • Arrange play times with other families whose children will be going to the same school. It helps if your child knows another child at their school at the start of prep.
  • Practise the things your child will need to do to get ready for school (e.g. putting things in their bag, remembering to take a hat).
  • Confirm your before or after school care arrangements and explain these to your child.
  • Be positive about starting school and enjoy your child’s excitement.
  • Visit your local library and read books with your child about starting school.


The first day of school

  • Make sure your child knows who will take them to school and pick them up on the first day.
  • Help your child to organise their clothes, hat, shoes and socks the night before.
  • Help your child to pack their school bag with a snack, drink, lunch and a hat.
  • Place a spare pair of underpants and a change of clothes in a plastic bag. Let your child know these clothes are in their bag in case of any accidents at school.
  • Put sunscreen on your child in the morning if it's needed.
  • Show your child where you will meet them at the end of the school day.
  • At the end of the day talk to your child about what happened at school.