The Starting School Book

How to choose, prepare for and settle your child at school

by Sarah Ockwell-Smith

There are so many issues surrounding starting school that parents struggle with ranging from selecting the best school for their child (and knowing the right things to look for and questions to ask), preparing their child emotionally and practically for starting, knowing what must-haves to buy (and what not to buy!), navigating school settling-in procedures, coping with behaviour regressions at home, friendship issues, anxiety, tricky behaviour at school, school refusal and homework.

Despite these many concerns, there is little advice available for parents in this position. Most 'starting school' books are aimed at the children themselves. Parents are left to turn to internet discussion forums and social media to ask their many questions. The Starting School Book fills this gap.

Contents will include:
*Approaches to education around the world; different options available to parents (including Home-Schooling, Radical Unschooling, Forest School, Private School, Montessori and Steiner Schools, Democratic Schools, Free Schools, church schools and state schools)
*What to look for when choosing a school and what questions to ask when you visit
*Preparing your child emotionally for starting school
*Preparing your child practically for starting school (e.g. toileting, dressing and eating independence)
*Coping with school anxiety and refusal
*Restraint collapse (explosive behaviour at home at the end of the school day) and other behaviour regressions
*Helping your child to navigate new friendships (and fallings out)
*How to connect with your child at the end of the school day.


  • Little, Brown Book Group; March 2020
  • ISBN: 9780349423784
  • Title: The Starting School Book
  • Author: Sarah Ockwell-Smith
  • Imprint: Piatkus