Büşra Atılgan - ISTANBUL
Turkish education experts have emphasized the importance of family support in students’ transition to school on their first day, as first and fifth graders have stepped into their new schools, as the academic year kicks off for them on Sept. 11.
All elementary, middle and high school students across Turkey will start school on Sept. 18, but the case is different for first and fifth graders, as they start one week in advance for them to have enough time to adjust to their new schools. First graders will start school for the first time ever, whereas fifth graders will transition from elementary school to middle school.
During this transition period, experts advise families to continue their routine lives and not to have any preconceptions about children adapting to their new lives, as children can normally easily accommodate themselves in new environments unless the parents panic. The expert, hence, indicated they should both trust themselves and their children in this period.
“In fact, the main issue that can be considered as a problem in the adjustment period is the family’s prejudices regarding their child,” said Elgiz Henden, the founder of İz Koçluk firm, which specializes in student, educational and parent coaching, regarding this transition period.
“Parents preparing children for school, giving them information as to what they may be faced with [at school], maybe taking them to the school in advance and showing them the environment they will be in, can take a load off the children’s minds …The children may have difficulty at first, as their daily routines change, but then they accommodate themselves with it. One of the elements that will make the adjustment period easier is if the children continue their habits,” Henden said.