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What to expect when teacher visits us at home?

(23 Posts)
MrPoppersPenguins Tue 21-Jun-16 21:23:59

My DS starts in reception class in September. His teacher is coming to meet us at home soon. What on earth should I expect??! Is it a quick chat? Look round our home? A safeguarding check?

I'm convinced my (usually well behaved) son will start being silly and insist on showing her every toy gun (I've hidden away lol) he possesses. I'm also stressing about the amount of cleaning I should do!!

meowli Tue 21-Jun-16 21:27:33

I've never come across a home visit from a teacher before! They can't possibly do that for every child who's starting, surely?

Andcake Tue 21-Jun-16 21:33:32

We have one in September the week before ds starts - I'm worried about tidiness and ds not being still. You're don has toy guns how did that happen...

Shesaysso Tue 21-Jun-16 21:36:25

Our school did this. It's really nice and nothing to worry about. The teachers had no interest in my house, didn't want tea (even though I offered). They brought a couple of little puzzles and a book, stayed 10 mins and chatted with my child (who incidentally hid when I went to answer the door and I couldn't find her!).
Also asked if I had any concerns - I think it's just to make your child feel a bit at ease with them whilst in their own surroundings.

suitcaseofdreams Tue 21-Jun-16 21:40:03

Home visits v usual in many areas meowli :-)

We had class teacher and TA come, although not until first week of Sept (they delay reception start date so teachers can do these visits)

Ours were only here about 15 mins or so. Bought the boys (I have twins) a pencil and notebook each, looked at their toys, dutifully oohed and aah-ed at their massive collection of Lego (which the boys insisted on showing
Asked me if I had any questions about school start, had a little chat with boys about their favourite toys/things to do and that was it

All very casual. I didn't do any special cleaning or tidying up. Did get in some nice biscuits but they refused refreshments (think we may well have been one in a long series of visits that day and they'd had enough - all the more yummy biscuits for us though!)

was good for us as my two were both a bit nervous about starting school and it was nice for them to meet their teacher in their own home where they were more comfortable/relaxed etc

Really nothing to worry about though 😄 Def not about safeguarding or checking out your house - just nice for them to meet the kids on home territory and it gives you a chance to chat about any questions or concerns you may have too 😄

MrPoppersPenguins Tue 21-Jun-16 21:40:12

Yeah I'm not happy about the toy guns but that's a whole other story......

StopYouMother Tue 21-Jun-16 21:40:46

We had this last year.
They gave us a little summer holiday diary to fill in and the TA got my son to write his name on it while the teacher just went through some basics, asked what his favourite toys were etc, and answered any questions we had.
They sat on the sofa for about 20 mins and didn't even have a cup of tea.
I'd cleaned the house from top to bottom but needn't have bothered!

MrPoppersPenguins Tue 21-Jun-16 21:41:41

I don't know any other schools in the area that do this but I do think it's nice they meet the children in their own homes first. Thanks for your reassurances x

ineedaholidaynow Tue 21-Jun-16 21:42:59

Our school do these. DS is now in Y6 so obviously happened a few years ago. They just come to introduce themselves to the child (and the parents) so the child may not be so worried about meeting them at school.

I seem to remember DS greeting the teacher (and the HT, who came for some reason as well) at the top of the stairs playing a plastic saxophone confused

I tidied the house and DS promptly got all his toys out all over the place.

I am sure they probably do gain impressions of what "type" of family you are, but I hope this is not the main reason for their visit.

RatOnnaStick Tue 21-Jun-16 21:45:20

DS's reception teacher visited in september last year. She gave him a camera and asked him to take pictures of anything he liked at home (within reason) and while he was running around doing that we had a chat in the kitchen over tea. She asked stuff about literacy and numeracy - how far he can count, can he read at all yet, writing or not yet. Asked about siblings and wider family, hobbies, likes and dislikes, any concerns we might have, any medical issues etc. All very general and just getting a fuller picture of him really. It was half an hour of chat really. Nothing scary.

Girlsinthegarden Tue 21-Jun-16 21:46:23

They will expect to be shown 30 pairs of new school shoes and dragged to 30 bedrooms.

They'll expect to answer your questions and reassure you.

They'll expect to be climbed on and hidden from.

They won't expect a tidy house.

Hope that helps!

MrPoppersPenguins Tue 21-Jun-16 21:49:18

Ha ha girls..... I totally mis-read that and thought "we don't have 30 bedrooms"!!

Shit.... That means I have to tidy upstairs and his bedroom shock

daydreamnation Tue 21-Jun-16 21:51:45

I'm a reception nursery nurse, my school do this, it's lovely and is really not a home inspection!
It makes a huge difference to the process of settling in, seeing a child in their own surroundings, meeting pets, being shown favourite toys etc is such a bonding experience. It also gives you a chance to get to know us and ask any questions in complete privacy.
Our children remember it throughout school and it always amuses me when a big ks2 child comes bounding over and says 'Miss, remember when you came to my house?'
Please only tidy up if you want to grinGood luck with starting school!

Believeitornot Tue 21-Jun-16 21:52:49

We had a visit. It was ten minutes with the ta and teacher. They asked a few questions and got ds to write his name.

On his first day the teacher remembered him, greeting him by his name as he went in the door. He loved it and we never had a problem with him going to school.

DrCoconut Tue 21-Jun-16 21:53:20

Ours was mortifying because we still had our cat, who was incontinent, and he peed all over. I tried my best to remove the smell but was not entirely successful. We knew he did not have long left and after losing him we replaced carpeting, cushions etc that needed to go. No comment was made and we never heard any more about it so I conclude that house inspection is not one of the reasons.

ineedaholidaynow Tue 21-Jun-16 21:55:36

I don't think I tidied upstairs, DS very kindly brought everything downstairs grin

I was speaking to a YR teacher recently who is currently doing home visits, and she is surprised by how many parents leave the tv on whilst she is talking to them and their child.

Iliketeaagain Tue 21-Jun-16 22:02:40

Dd's reception teacher did this.. She brought a box with things about herself - a pic of her cat and her family, her favourite pencil and toy (I think a yoyo or bouncy ball) and took a picture of the me, dd and DH.
She asked dd if she could make a box with her favourite things, or photos of them and bring it with her on her first day. The first few days of reception, time was spent with each child showing the class what was in their box so they could all learn about each other.
The kids loved it.

Lucienandjean Tue 21-Jun-16 22:03:10

I used to do home visits when I taught reception, so I can tell you a bit about what I did and thought, and I hope you find it reassuring.

The main aim, for me, was to get a sense of the child's personality, strengths etc. Some of this came from what parents told me, some from just seeing them play in their home environment, where hopefully they are fairly relaxed. I found it interesting to see what they liked to play with, and maybe get some idea of language skills.

All this comes with the big proviso that I knew children and parents were often a bit nervous and not totally comfortable with me. I tried to be reassuring, but even so...

I didn't care if the house was tidy, so long as there was a seat for me to sit on (bad back!) and so long as it wasn't truly squalid. I only went in one house that made me have safeguarding worries from the squalor alone, and it was really extreme. Mess, a bit of dirt, not a problem. In fact extreme tidiness could be worse?

I usually accepted a drink if it was offered, but not always if I had lots of visits, as I didn't like to ask to use people's loos (my issue, not to do with cleanliness).

I usually tried to engage the child in a game or story, watched them interact with siblings, toys, mum etc. Asked the carer if they had concerns or questions, things they wanted me to know in advance. Allergies, family issues, whatever they were concerned about. Sometimes we talked about pre school experiences / nursery / childminder and how that had gone.

I never went with a view to checking up or finding fault. The visits were brief (I had 30 to do) so it's very unlikely I'd see enough to worry me enough to make a safeguarding referral. Not impossible, but it never happened to me. Even in the case of the squalid house I mentioned earlier, it only involved me speaking to the safeguarding person in school, so she was aware. It's then her role to log info and refer if necessary.

Some families maybe I could see had problems or issues, but they usually became clearer once the child had started school.

The vast majority of families were welcoming, and I really enjoyed meeting careers and children. It got us off to a flying start in September, and hopefully forged relationships that were useful if problems / queries / worries arose later.

The visit I remember years later was to a family where the carer told me, in tears, that she could not read. I don't think she would have told me that in the school building, she was scared of schools. It was so useful to know that. We could help with issues such as letters home from school, helping her children with reading, checking that info was available to her in other ways. She certainly did a lot of phonics work with her child despite her own difficulties.

Anyway, I digress. I don't think you should worry. The people who worry are usually those who don't need to.

MrPoppersPenguins Tue 21-Jun-16 22:19:23

Thanks lucieandjean.......
Our house certainly isn't squalid winkit's looking pretty tidy now thank goodness. I'm actually looking forward to it now, I suppose it's just human nature to want to make a good first impression!

Lucienandjean Tue 21-Jun-16 22:47:48


meowli Tue 21-Jun-16 23:17:35

I'm amazed, suitcase! There's definitely no such thing in my area. The reception teachers from the local school my dc went to, visit the feeder pre-schools, rather than visit at home. Thanks for enlightening me, though. smile

citykat Wed 22-Jun-16 09:19:17

Lucienandjean - your list made me cry. Puts all the tidy house angst into perspective. brilliant the cater could tell you and you could put things in place to support the family with communications.

burythechains Wed 22-Jun-16 14:09:57

Remember they will bring a tape measure to check the size of your TV. The bigger the TV, the lower the book band your child will be put in grin.

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