Benefits of preparatory at Mount Sinai

July 17, 2019 by  
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As a parent, your two biggest drivers are to protect and prepare.  Arguably, one of the biggest decisions you will need to make in preparing your child for their future is choosing the correct schooling for them.

Statistics show that when a child enters a school from a preparatory school-readiness program (age 4-6) they are not only well ahead of their peers in transitioning into the academic aspects of year K and their formative school years, but they feel more secure and are more prepared to integrate socially. The personalised and individual attention they receive at this very early stage of their educational journey builds intangible confidence which is pivotal to future success.

Hazel Gruskin, current Kindergarten teacher at Mount Sinai College (MSC) says, “With over 20 years’ experience in teaching this year group, the main thing I’ve noticed with a cohort who has come directly from MSC prep is the social resilience and familiarity. They settle within the first week, they know where the library is, the bathroom, the routines etc. It’s a huge bonus!”

Schools such as Mount Sinai College that have a preparatory program argue that, by their very nature, they provide a guaranteed value-add to a child’s education. This is achieved through the consistency of teaching staff throughout the child’s school life, the employment of specialist staff, extensive co-curricular programs and embedding the school’s core values and principles from the outset.

Mount Sinai College Early Learning Centre (ELC) and Preparatory Director Jill Allison, says “Often the transition from ELC straight into Kindergarten can come as quite a shock for children. Prep schooling is the next step from an ELC, yet an alternative to the standard primary situation, with a similar structure and environment pervading the entire school experience.”

The Mount Sinai preparatory school readiness year is a rarity amongst Sydney Jewish schools. Situated on their main campus, the College offers the preparatory year as a transition into primary education. The program is full-time, 5 days a week with a structured numeracy and literacy program to promote school readiness, all while adhering to the Early Learning Framework. Further, the complementary informal and formal Jewish and Hebrew learning along with specialised music and sport lessons makes for a seamless transition into Kindergarten and later years.

The Mount Sinai College Preparatory Educators have obtained recognised Early Childhood Qualifications and are led by experienced University qualified Early Childhood Teachers. This educational cohort continuously enriches their practices through ongoing professional development.

Each Prep child is paired with a Year 5 buddy as part of the ‘Big Friend Small Friend’ initiative. This relationship, which is nurtured through formal and informal activities, gives a real sense of belonging.

Current prep parent Nicole Goodman says, “my child flourished at MSC ELC and has further excelled at prep where she is in a focused environment for children between the ages 4-5. We are continuously surprised at the level of education and her love for learning. Located on the main campus the children feel like they are included in certain school events, have lessons with the school’s teachers such as Rabbi Yossi and Coach Joel, and group activities with the school students such as the “buddy program”.

Article submitted by Mount Sinai

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