As kaiako, we celebrate whānau and acknowledge the trust that you put in us by leaving your precious tamaiti with us.
For tamariki to be at kindergarten and play with friends, share kai, sing and listen to stories they also need to be separate from their parents/whanau. Therefore, settling forms, a big part of our work as kaiako and is one of the most important parts of our day. When tamariki transition successfully from the loving arms of parents/whānau, this sets them up for a great start for the day. We believe the role that a parent/whānau and kaiako play in this delicate dance is especially important to ensure a successful transition from home to kindergarten. For some tamariki the transition happens seamlessly with limited adult involvement while other tamariki really struggle and need a lot of support and reassurance from whānau and kaiako.
There are many reasons why some tamariki struggle more with transitions or even why a child struggles more on some days than others. The most important way to help a child with transition is by bridging the separation. How do you hold onto your child when you are apart? This could be done successfully by putting the emphasis not on the goodbye part but on the reconnection with your child at the end of the day.
Successful transition and attachment with kaiako happens when kaiako connect with your child each kindergarten day and frequently kaiako need to connect with you as the parent and collect your child through you. Having your tamaiti see you interacting with kaiako in a friendly manner is important. Exchanging eye contact, a smile, nodding together, where your child experiences you as being on the same side as the kaiako.
If your tamaiti is crying, please don’t force kaiako to peel them off of you. Instead, pick them up and do a hand-over, into the teacher’s loving arms. The gesture is that where the kaiako is never pulling them away from you, she is receiving your tamaiti and your trust. You are leaving them in the best of hands.
Ko te ahurei o te tamaiti arahia o tatou mahi
Let the uniqueness of the child guide our work
“Children are competent and confident learners and communicators, healthy in mind, body, and spirit, secure in their sense of belonging and in the knowledge that they make a valued contribution to society” Ministry of Education 2017