How to help your child to learn in Foundation


Rhymes, Chants, Alliteration

Play rhyming games with your child. Read Nursery Rhymes. Make up silly songs together. Play with word families (cat, mat, sat etc.) using magnetic letters or a whiteboard. Play games in the car (‘I Spy’, etc.)

Read to them

Listening, reading, dramatising, and the telling and retelling of a familiar story helps young children build their vocabularies and understand parts of the story. Visit your local library. Make it part of your regular routine. Show them your love of reading.

Scan through the book first

Have a quick look through the book and look at the pictures. Ask your child what they think the book might be about. Cue them into the vocabulary they might find within, e.g. This book is about a farm. What animals live on a farm?

Ask questions

What do you think this book is about? What do you think will happen? What might happen next? Why is the boy/girl feeling happy/sad?

Read it

Read it to them using your ‘pointer finger’ to point to each word as you read. Read it several times. Eventually they will want to join in.

Use the pictures

The pictures often hold clues as to what is written. Children need to ‘read’ the pictures. Don’t cover them up! They are there to help.


Reading should be enjoyable. If your child is too tired, it is not a good time to practise reading. Read to them instead! Each child will learn and develop at their own pace, please don’t compare them with other children.


The THRASS Institute is an Australian based company that has developed an explicit system for teaching phonetics – an acronym for ‘Teaching Handwriting, Reading And Spelling Skills’.

THRASS is a phonetics teaching-tool that has a phonographic, multisensory focus that makes reading and spelling acquisition much simpler, faster and more sustainable than conventional ‘phonic’ approaches. As a classroom strategy THRASS is fun, systematic, explicit and linguistically correct.

Technical Vocabulary

Terms are taught explicitly to children.

Phonemes:          Speech sounds. The smallest unit of sound you hear.

Graphemes:       Spelling choices.

Graph:                 One letter spelling choice, such as ‘t’ as in tap.

Digraph:              Two letters representing one sound, such as ‘sh’ in shop.

Trigraph:              Three letters representing one sound, such as ‘igh’ in night.

Quadgraph:       Four letters representing one sound, such as ‘eigh’ in eigh.

Students learn to recognise grapheme/phoneme correspondences, then blend, decode and segment sounds to make words.


In order to become fluent, children need to recognise words quickly, without having to break each word down to individual phonemes/sounds. We will send home HOT Words to practise with your children. This should be a quick, fun, stress free activity to help your child master these high frequency words.



Counting to ten forms the basis of our number system and you can help your child by counting groups of objects in many different ways. When bringing the shopping home count the items as you unpack and ask your child to put away a specific number of items. Count the houses, cars, trees and so on as you go for a walk or a drive. Encourage your child to set the table and count the items. When putting away washing, pair up socks and count the pairs.

Once children have a sound knowledge of counting to ten discuss the different number facts that make up ten, such as 2 + 8, 3+7 and so on. Children need to know that numbers can go forwards and backwards so counting back, initially from ten, is an important skill to develop. ‘Snap’ could be used to develop number skills.


Games like Snakes and Ladders are great for counting, as well as dice dot pattern recognition (subitising). Children can learn to add the dots on two dice to form a bigger number (addition). Children can be encouraged to look at the biggest dot pattern and then count on the other dice. Card games such as UNO and Snap are also great for counting and number recognition. Dominoes is another great game for counting and matching numbers.

Remember losing is a natural part of playing a game, so please let your child lose as often as they win.


Initially children will count all the objects in the group. To avoid recounting items, encourage children to put items in a row or pattern. Encourage them to talk about how they got their answer. Later on encourage them to count on when there are two groups of objects. For example; if I know there are six apples in a group and four in another I need to count only the four more, so I count seven, eight, nine and ten.


Mathletics is a highly engaging online program that supports the curriculum your child is following at school.  Your child has an individual username and password that they can use to access the site.  Your child’s teacher will be able to give you the access details to Mathletics towards the end of Term 1.


Parent Helpers

Parent helpers are required for some Literacy sessions and PMP, Library and Craft sessions.  All parent helpers need to sign in at the office and collect a lanyard.  Parent helpers are essential, as we are unable to run our literacy programs without helpers.  Regular weekly or fortnightly helpers are encouraged. All helpers need to have a current Working With Children check which needs to be registered in the office.


Term 1- RACV

Term 2- The Body Investigators

Term 3- Responsible Pets and RSPCA


Term 3- The Melbourne Zoo

Term 4- The Botanic Gardens

Special Days

Term 1- Foundation Family Picnic

Term 2- Mother’s Afternoon Tea, Foundation Healthy Day

Term 3- Father’s Night

Term 4- Grandparents’ Afternoon


All notices, Newsletters, reports and any other relevant communication is notified to you via COMPASS, so please check regularly. We also encourage you to enter any student absences on Compass.

Positive Education

Park Ridge Primary is currently implementing the Berry Street Education Model. The Berry Street Education Model is a highly researched best practice approach to the teaching of Positive Education in schools in order to improve a school’s capacity to address the engagement of young people so that they can achieve their personal social potential through academic achievement.


School on Time

Please ensure that your child is here before 8:45am so that they can enter the classroom along with their classmates. If they are late they need to present to the office for a late-slip. It is very distracting for the rest of the grade when children come to school late.

Book Bags

Your child’s Book Bag will stay with them throughout their junior school experience. These are for our take-home books, Reading Log and Hot Words. Please check them nightly and engage in learning with your child.


We have a school website that you can access for a range of resources. Information will be posted on this from time to time to keep you up to date with events that happen in the school.

Lunch Orders and the Canteen

If your child has a lunch order you can either send it with them to school or via the QuickCliq app. They will still need fruit/vegetables for brain food and something to eat as a snack. Please be mindful of how much money you give your child to spend at the canteen. $1 – $2 is enough to buy a treat. They are not allowed to buy for friends or share food.


Your child will have an allocated day to borrow and they can have the books for two weeks. This year all the Foundation children have Library on Friday. It is important to encourage your child to read the books and discuss the story or information with you.

School Newsletter

The school newsletter comes out weekly on a Thursday and is posted on COMPASS. There is also a Foundation Newsletter that is posted on COMPASS each Friday in term 1 and then fortnightly from Term 2 onwards.

We have children with nut allergies in Foundation, so please be mindful of this when packing snacks and lunches.