Fostering Independence

Dear Parents,
As we prepare for the end of the school year, we will also focus on the transition to second grade. The best part of teaching first grade is watching each child grow academically, physically, socially and emotionally. We as parents and teachers, nurture, protect, and guide them throughout the year. Now that they are older and are more aware of themselves and what they can do we continue to provide for them, but also encourage them to become more independent. Listed below are a few things that we are asking the students to work on from now until the end of the year to help them get ready for second grade. We would really appreciate your support by encouraging them to do these things as well.

Independent pick up and drop off

Students should begin to feel comfortable coming to the classroom by themselves each morning and leaving the classroom to meet you.

What you can do to help:
A few days a week, encourage your child to say good bye to you at the flag pole or in front of their Ranch House each morning instead of walking them to the classroom door and waiting for the bell to ring. After school, have them meet you at that same spot. This will help them become more independent and build self-confidence.

Packing and Unpacking backpacks

The students should pack up and unpack their backpack by themselves each day. This includes getting library books, homework, take home folders, reading books, and snacks.

What you can do to help:
Although it might be easier for you to unpack and pack up for your child each day, please encourage them to try and do it by themselves first. Verbal reminders are helpful instead of doing it for them. This will help teach responsibility, organizational skills and problem solving strategies.


Homework should be somewhat independent. The goal for first grade homework is to read each night, review concepts taught in class and practice the discipline of doing homework.

What you can do to help:
Help them get started with their homework but then leave them to do the majority of it on their own. When they are finished, spend the time reviewing the work together and answering questions they may have.
Thank you for your continued support.
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Poway Unified School District, 15250 Avenue of Science, San Diego, CA 92128-3406