EDUC08035 2016 Transitions in the Early Years

General Details

Full Title
Transitions in the Early Years
Transcript Title
N/A %
Subject Area
EDUC - Education
SOCS - Social Sciences
08 - NFQ Level 8
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2016 - Full Academic Year 2016-17
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Tamsin Cavaliero, Aoife Cooney, Maire Hanniffy, Silvia Gursinski
Programme Membership
SG_HEARL_G07 201600 Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Care and Educ SG_HEARL_H08 201700 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Humanities in Early Childhood Care and Educ SG_HEARL_H08 201800 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Early Childhood Care and Educ

The aim of this module is to equip students with the knowledge and practical skills to support children in a variety of transitional situations throughout their early years. Students will explore the role of adults, relevant policies and current practices in supporting children during horizontal and vertical transitions (from home into an early years setting, transitions within settings, transitions into follow on settings, transitions between settings). Particular emphasis will be placed on the importance of working with a variety of professionals in different fields during transitions. Particular emphasis is placed children's role in transitions and on working with parents/guardians in relation to transitions. The concept of “school readiness” and the transition to school will be analysed referring to relevant national policy documents such as Aistear, Siolta, the Primary School curriculum and the National Literacy and Numeracy Strategy.


Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Identify and discuss a range of transitions children experience including transitions from home to setting, within setting and from setting to setting.


Evaluate a range of strategies to support such transitions.


Compare and contrast the Primary School Curriculum and Aistear and discuss strategies and possibilities for complementary implementation.


Discuss strategies of working with parents, as part of a team in a setting and with professionals from follow-on settings in the process of transitions.


Discuss the concept of 'school readiness' from the perspective of the child, the pre-school setting and the primary school.

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Teaching will focuses on the student experience and the practical application of learning.

Active learning strategies will be applied throughout.

Teaching will incorporate students personal and professional experience and knowledge. Learning will be facilitated through the use of case studies.

Regular revision will enable the students to apply their knowledge and enable them to monitor their own learning.

Module Assessment Strategies

Project 60%

Group Project 40%

Repeat Assessments

Project 60%

Group Project 40%

Indicative Syllabus

- Introduce students to the concept of Transition

- Range of transitions: home to setting, within a setting, throughout a day in a setting, from one setting to the next

- Priamry School Curriculum, Aistear

- Literacy and Numeracy Strategy - implementation in Pre-school and Primary School - explore the concept of continuaty in education in early years settings

- Strategies to support children during transitions

- Analyse and critically evaluate policies in relation to transition at service level and nationally

- Strategies for working with parents and guardians 

- Working with other professionals

- Analyse and critically evaluate transition programmes in use

- "School Readiness" from different perspectives (the child, the parents/guardians, pre-school and Primary School)

Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
60 %
End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
40 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Project Project Project 60 % End of Semester 1,2,4

End of Semester / Year Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Project Final Exam Group Project 40 % OnGoing 3,5

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Lecture Theatre Lecture 2 Weekly 2.00
Tutorial Flat Classroom Tutorial 1 Weekly 1.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 3.00 Hours

Required & Recommended Book List

Recommended Reading
2008-07-01 Supporting Transitions in the Early Years (Supporting Early Learning) Open University Press
ISBN 0335221688 ISBN-13 9780335221684

"The text is wide-ranging and discusses different approaches and examples of good practice in supporting transition, from around the world. ... Supporting Transitions in the Early Years gives early years practitioners a real insight into the theory that should underpin high quality everyday practice for everyone engaging with young children."
Early Years Update

Supporting Transitions in the Early Years explores the whole range of early childhood transitions, rather than simply looking at starting school or pre-school. It helps parents, practitioners, policy-makers and Early Years students at every level, to understand and support the successive transitions made by young children from birth to five.

Starting from a discussion of the rapid pace of change in current societies, and children's need to acquire flexibility and resilience in adapting to change, it offers examples of transitions such as:

  • Babies and toddlers moving into under-3s care
  • Pre-schoolers moving into school
  • Reception children moving into formal learning classrooms
  • Support for the transitions of children with English as an additional language or special needs At each stage, individual case studies are discussed in relation to relevant theories of development and learning, and contemporary perspectives on children's well-being and children's rights. The international case studies offer clear examples of the ways that adults in high-quality settings can work together with parents to strengthen children's positive dispositions.

    The book highlights key qualities - resilience, resourcefulness and reciprocity - which adults should seek to foster in children, to facilitate their current transitions and prepare them for a future of change. The author also underlines the importance of listening to children from birth onwards, if we are to offer the kind of caring and educative environments that will best support their well-being.

  • Recommended Reading
    2002-05-28 Starting School Open University Press
    ISBN 0335209327 ISBN-13 9780335209323

    This book traces the experiences of children from a poor inner-urban neighbourhood - half of them from Bangladeshi families - as they acquire the knowledge appropriate to their home culture and then take this knowledge to their reception class. It highlights the small differences in family life - in parenting practices, in perspectives on childhood, and in beliefs about work and play - which make a big difference to children's adaptations to school.

    Recommended Reading
    2014 Transitions to School - International Research, Policy and Practice: 9 (International perspectives on early childhood education and development) Springer

    This book provides an important compilation and synthesis of current work in transition to school research. The book focuses strongly on the theoretical underpinnings of research in transition to school. It outlines key theoretical positions and connects those to the implications for policy and practice, thereby challenging readers to re-conceptualize their understandings, expectations and perceptions of transition to school. The exploration of this range of theoretical perspectives and the application of these to a wide range of research and research contexts makes this book an important and innovative contribution to the scholarship of transition to school research. A substantial part of the book is devoted to detailed examples of transition to school practice. These chapters provide innovative examples of evidence-based practice and contribute in turn, to practice-based evidence. The book is also devoted to considering policy issues and implications related to the transition to school. It records a genuine, collaborative effort to bring together a range of perspectives into a Transition to School Position Statement that will inform ongoing research, practice and policy. The collaborative, research, policy and practice based development of this position statement represents a world-first.

    Recommended Reading
    2012-12-01 Understanding Transitions in the Early Years: Supporting Change through Attachment and Resilience Routledge
    ISBN 0415598583 ISBN-13 9780415598583

    There are many transitions that children experience before they are five, including the first major transition from home to an early years setting. Successive changes can have a serious impact on young children and stress, separation and insecure attachments can affect not only a childs emotional health but also cognitive and intellectual development.

    Understanding Transitions in the Early Years explains why transitions matter and provides practical guidance on how to support young childrens developing emotional resilience and equip them to embrace change in the future. Aimed at practitioners and students, the book:

    • draws together evidence from neuroscience, attachment theory, child development and childcare practices
    • provides a context for practitioners to empathise with children and families as they relate to their own understanding of the impact of change and transition
    • looks at ways to reduce the number of transitions including the key person approach
    • offers guidance and practical strategies for practitioners, managers and head teachers for supporting children through transitions.

    Including case studies, examples of good practice and questions for reflection this thought-provoking text emphasises the little things that practitioners can do for the individual children in their care to help them feel secure and confident when dealing with change.

    Recommended Reading
    2006-12-01 Informing Transitions in the Early Years Open University Press
    ISBN 0335220134 ISBN-13 9780335220137

    An increased emphasis on an early start in group day care and educational settings for young children means that by the time children enter statutory education, they may already have had several transitional experiences: each will have an impact.

    This book explores early transitions from a variety of international perspectives. Each chapter is informed by rigorous research and makes recommendations on how education professionals can better understand and support transitions in the early years. Contributors examine issues such as:

    • Parental involvement in the transition to school
    • Children's voices on the transition to primary school
    • The construction of identity in the early years
    Readers will be able to draw support, guidance and inspiration from the different writers to scaffold their own thinking and development in relation to childrens transitions. Ample opportunities are offered for readers to gain confidence and competence in dealing with the range of people involved in transitions, and to the benefit of everyone, not least the children, whose transitions capital will grow.

    Informing Transitions in the Early Years is essential reading for early years students, practitioners, policy makers and researchers.

    Module Resources

    Non ISBN Literary Resources

    O’Kane, M. (2007) Building Bridges: the transition from preschool to primary school for children in Ireland (PhD.) thesis. Dublin.