What Is School Readiness?

Little Boy Receiving His School Bag

At age four or five, your child will be ready to make the transition to primary school education. But whilst they might be old enough to attend, are you certain that they are mentally prepared? If you aren’t confident in your child’s “school readiness” and want some guidance on what they need to know before they start, then read this blog to find out more.

What Is School Readiness, And What Does It Mean?

School readiness encompasses a child’s development in many different areas of their lives. Their behaviours, knowledge and skillsets act as a measure of how ready they are to move to the next stage of their education. It's common for parents to believe a child is ready for school once they can write their own name and understand basic patterns, shapes and colours, but these are far from the only skills a child will need.

It's critical that a child is also able to communicate with their classmates so they can build healthy friendships, demonstrate respect for their teachers and assert their needs and boundaries effectively. But arguably, the biggest skill they will require is the ability to follow instructions.

How Can I Tell If My Child Is “School Ready”?

If you're trying to figure out if your child is ready for school, it's important to remember that they will enjoy school more, as well as meet or exceed their targets, if they're actually ready to learn. You'll know your child is ready for school if they demonstrate the following:

Social Agreeableness

A child who is ready for school should be friendly and comfortable around other people, be open and honest, and be able to recognise other people's emotional states. They should also be able to share with other children and exhibit basic manners and politeness. Similarly, they should be comfortable playing alone.

Emotional Awareness

A child with good levels of emotional awareness can control their own emotions with little intervention from adults. Whilst they understandably might need some guidance managing more difficult or upsetting feelings, they will be able to show an appreciation rather than frustration towards classroom rules.

Language Usage

Being able to talk to other adults and children in a clear and concise voice is incredibly important for children starting school. They should also be able to understand stories and listen to others, which will help them to develop meaningful relationships.

Physical Health And Co-Ordination

Is your child fit and healthy in general? Do they have good physical coordination that enables them to run around, catch balls and play with the other children in the playground? And what about their fine motor skills? If any of these are lacking, you should find ways to support your child with these challenges before they start school.


Your child should be able to manage basic functions alone, such as going to the toilet, dressing themselves and unwrapping their lunches. These are simple tasks that can be easily taught.

How To Help Your Child Become More School Ready

There is plenty you can do to encourage your child to be ready to start school, such as:
  • Encouraging your child to have reciprocal conversations with you
  • Teaching your child how to dress and undress themselves
  • Teaching them to write and draw using different mediums, which will boost their fine motor skills
  • Reading bedtime stories with them to develop their comprehension
  • Arranging playdates with friends to encourage social growth
For more tips, check out the rest of our blog today!