Orientation Programs Are Needed for a Safe Start to School

Orientation Programs Are Needed for a Safe Start to School
Orientation Programs Are Needed for a Safe Start to School

Summer vacation has ended and the 2022-2023 academic year has started with the first bell ringing on Monday, September 12th. With the opening of schools, 23 million students who will continue their classes until the semester break, which will start on January 19, started class 3 weeks ago. After a long vacation, the importance of orientation programs that facilitate students' adaptation to school and speed up the return to school process has come to the fore again. Academic studies on the subject have shown that orientation affects a student's experience, success, and happiness in school. Experts drew attention to the importance of orientation programs prepared in accordance with the school's education curriculum and the principles it adopts, in accordance with the needs of age groups and based on academic references.

Nur Canbaz, Deputy General Director of Education of Eraslan School, which follows a bilingual curriculum based in İzmir, shared her views on the subject and said, “Orientation programs not only accelerate the adaptation process of our students, but also help us to recognize their individual differences and learning styles. During the orientation program, which we have designed specifically for each age group, we establish a bond of trust with our students in a short time and we differentiate our education program in accordance with the learning styles of our students.”

The First Step of the Pre-School Education Program, the Bond of Trust

Reminding that especially preschool students encounter concepts such as teachers, classmates, lessons, routines and rules for the first time, Nur Canbaz said, “We determine the first step of the preschool education program, which we have prepared together with academicians, as a bond of trust. Our students can make a happy start to school by establishing the first secure attachment after their families with their teachers and friends. Healthy and lasting bonds play an important role in the program that the student will continue throughout the year. Each of our students enrolled in Eraslan Bilingual Kindergarten, where we follow a bilingual curriculum, meets their classroom and English teachers, who have bilingual teachers who will accompany them throughout the day before starting school. Thanks to the presence of these teachers, one of whom speaks Turkish and the other only English, our students can freely communicate in any language they want. The students, who do the entire orientation process in two languages, can more easily mingle with their teachers, and they see themselves as a part of the school by forming a bond of trust in a short time. In addition, our guidance teachers, who lead the orientation program, observe the individual differences of our students and we organize our lessons with stations suitable for these differences during the academic year. Since differentiated teaching techniques begin with the orientation process, it becomes easier for us to understand the individual needs of our students.”

Over 20 Hours of Bilingual Events Held

Explaining that students get to know both their friends and teachers with more than 20 hours of bilingual activities and games before the start of the academic year, Eraslan School Deputy General Director for Education Nur Canbaz said, “Space orientation is also important for students' adaptation process. While our students explore different areas of the school during the orientation program and afterwards, they participate in interdisciplinary classes and activities in their classrooms and in Wonderland, where workshops, a dining hall and a multi-purpose area are located, together with the dual language program specific to Eraslan Bilingual Kindergarten. The first week we started with the theme of “Hello to School” continues with this and similar belonging activities. In this process, our kindergarten students visit different units of the school, from our security officers to our general manager, with different activities, learn what jobs all the people they meet at the school are interested in, and get used to the campus in a short time.

Special Orientation Program for All Age Groups

Emphasizing that the orientation program is not only for kindergarten students, Nur Canbaz summarized the orientation processes they designed according to different levels as follows: Our second-year students, on the other hand, get acquainted with art and sports lessons before they even start school, and choose the branches they will specialize in. Our 12th grade students, who started secondary school in Eraslan, start their foreign language-based programs blended with belonging studies as of August. Grade 5 students starting high school in Eraslan, on the other hand, have the experience of being a team by overcoming the difficulties they encounter in nature together with the boarding Base Camp we organize every year. All these orientation studies, which we have designed with great care, support our students' adaptation to school on the basis of a bond of trust.”

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