Years ago children attended kindergarten to learn how to socialize with other children, They spent their time at school playing, coloring, painting, and learning their ABC’s. Things have changed quite a bit since those days and the expectations for these young students are now much much more than in years past. Many parents are shocked to learn what their kindergarten age children are expected to know and what their school day will consist of at this early age. Helping your child prepare for kindergarten will allow them to have a happy and successful start to their school career.
Teach your child the Alphabet and how to rhyme.
One of the most important things you can do to ensure that your child has a solid start in school is to teach them the alphabet. Your child will have a great head start if he or she knows the alphabet and can recognize letters on that first day of school. Your child will feel more confident if they are not behind the other children in their knowledge of the alphabet. Your child should be able to recognize the beginning letter or sound of spoken words. Your child should also know about rhyme. Teach your child about rhyming words and how to identify them. Rhyming is used often in kindergarten and if your child understands the concept he will learn how to read words through association.
Time to sign in and start our day.
Do your child a favor and teach them to write their name before they start school. Teach them to write their first and even better also their last name. Capital letters and lower case in all the right places. And all the right sizes. Not all children will be able to do this with ease or perfection don’t despair, be patient and encourage and praise them for their hard work. If they are on their way to writing their own name they will feel proud that first day of school, and feeling good about themselves and their school experience is the best start that a child can have.
Is my child ready?
Your child will have a full and active day in kindergarten , is he or she ready? There are many things to consider when you ask yourself this question. Is your child on the young side or the older side of the school year? Does he or she socialize well with other children? Can she sit for fifteen or thirty minutes and not be overly distracted. Are you able to work on projects with your child for an extended period of time and see them through to completion. Can your child follow instructions with out argument . These are some of the questions you need to ask yourself when you are deciding if your child needs more time to work on these skills or if they are ready for kindergarten. If your child starts school and they are not ready they may fall behind quickly and stay behind . Sometimes a child may be able to catch up but its tough on kids to struggle that first year. Be honest in your assessment while making this important decision, It is much easier on a child to start school a year later than to stay back a year later on. Sometimes all it takes is one year for a child to get their feet solidly under them, set your child up for success from the start. Remember that your child’s education is a marathon not a sprint, only you know what is best for your child and a year is not that much in the grand scheme of things.
Sing me a song, show me a picture, or dig your hands into the sand.
It is important to respect your child’s learning style and temperament. Watch for cues when determining how your child learns best. Is she a quiet observer and needs visual cues? Maybe you have a child who learns best though song or sound. Some children learn only by doing and feeling, you can help this child by drawing letters in the sand or shaping them with play-dough. Some children can and will learn using all these senses equally, but others tend to rely more on one than the other. Try to discover your child’s learning style and use it to your and their advantage. Visual learners learn through seeing ,they need to see your body language and facial expression to understand . This child may think in pictures and learn best when pictures and visual displays are used. Auditory learners learn through listening they will understand things best when it is said aloud and later will benefit from the use of tape recorders .They will learn by listening to the pitch of a teachers voice and other subtle spoken nuances. Songs are wonderful teaching aids for this learning style. Tactile/Kinesthetic Learners learn though touching, moving and doing. This learner likes a hands- on approach, and will learn by exploring the world around them. This child in particular may find it hard to sit still for long periods of time and will be distracted by their need to actively explore. Follow their cue and let them touch and feel as much of the world around them as you can.
Letting go of your shy daisy,your social butterfly or your busy explorer.
Often times it is parents that have difficulty sending their child off to school. Its hard to realize that your child has reached this milestone and is not a baby anymore but a child ready for school. No longer will you be there every moment to make sure they make the right choices and behave the right way. Evidence that the most important thing that you can do for your child is to help them become an independent able child unafraid to spend their time in school without you. Teach your child to put on their own clothes and outer wear. They should know how to put their shoes on and if they can learn to tie them all the better. Your child should be able to feed themselves,open straws and snack packages without help. Most importantly your child should know how to be a good citizen. They should know that they are responsible for their own messes and can often lend a hand cleaning up others. They should be kind and considerate and caring of others feelings. They should know how to behave around adults and say please and thank you. Learning to be selfless is a skill that a child will learn from watching the adults around him. Model this behavior and your child will follow your lead. Help your child to become a friendly caring child. Remember that not all children will learn at the same speed or in the same way. Some children will have some bumps in the road making friends and finding their footing with their school work. This is natural and is all part of growing up. Guide your child through this process, Don’t be afraid to look at your child’s teacher as a partner in your child’s emotional and academic growth. Your child’s teacher is often the best person to ask for advice when faced with a dilemma, he or she often will have insight into your child that you may not have. Keep the lines of communication open, celebrate your child’s successes and help them see their strengths. Before you know it your child will be making their own lunches, tying their own shoes and doing their homework without being told. Pat yourself on the back you have done your job.
Read more about how your child can discover their world.
Teaching children about the wonders of nature