Learning to Cope with Stress during Transition from Kindergarten to School

By Mun Wong.

Published by The International Journal of Early Childhood Learning

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The aim of this study was to identify stressors during the transition from kindergarten to school. The sample included 98 parents and 54 teachers of 6-year-old children who started primary school in September in Hong Kong. Questionnaires were sent to parents and teachers, asking them to describe stressors that children encountered at school during the first 3 months of the school year. They were also asked to report how children coped with stress when starting school. Stressors were related to (1) school rules and routines; (2) interpersonal and organizational adjustment; (3) discontinuity of learning mode; (4) bullying at school; and (5) the new school environment. Parents and teachers observed different stressors and coping strategies during children’s transition to school. Making friends, learning to manage time, and fostering positive teacher-child relationships and social support (from parents, peers, and teachers) were important factors in helping children cope with stress during the transition.

Keywords: Coping Strategies, Transition from Kindergarten to School

The International Journal of Early Childhood Learning, Volume 19, Issue 2, pp.49-59. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 335.953KB).

Dr. Mun Wong

Assistant Professor, Department of Early Childhood Education, The Hong Kong Institute of Education, Tai Po, New Territories, Hong Kong

Dr. Mun Wong is the Assistant Professor of the Hong Kong Institute of Education, and the Field Experience Coordinator for the Bachelor of Education (Hons) (Early Childhood Education, 3-year Part-time) Programme. She is also the Project Leader of Zippy’s Friends, an emotional education programme in Hong Kong (2006-present). Over 76,000 five to seven year olds have been benefit from the programme with significant improvement in expressing emotions, solving problems and learning attitude. Her research projects and recent publications are mainly on preschool children’s moral and emotional development. She has been invited by the Education Youth Affairs Bureau in 2007-2012 to conduct inspections and provide consultancy work on the plan and work of the Integrated Evaluation of School (Kindergarten sector) in Macau.