Follow These Kindergarten Prep Tips to Get a Head Start
Creating well-rounded kindergartners is one of our premier goals at Just Children. We know how important it is for children to gain a basic understanding of valuable skills and knowledge that will help them be successful throughout primary school. Just Children Child Care Centers are now enrolling for full- or part-time kindergarten care throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Call us today to learn more about the exceptional programs we offer!
First Day of Kindergarten – Here We Come!
There’s so much for children to look forward to in kindergarten, and there’s a lot to do to get ready for that first day. Your child might be anxious about leaving home for the day and making new friends in a whole new environment, but that’s completely normal and expected. As parents, we also tend to get nervous about how they will handle the big changes. Nervousness for both parties is completely natural, and we want to help you feel confident about sending your child to kindergarten.
When the first day of school arrives, kindergarten students are expected to know some basic skills, including identifying letters of the alphabet and writing their first name. General goals for kindergarten focus on children practicing letter formation, building strong pre-reading skills, enhancing listening and communication skills, being introduced to simple math basics, and gaining an active curiosity for the world around them. Below, we have listed some of the most important skills to consider as your family gets ready for your child’s first day of kindergarten.
Be Able to Identify Some Letters of the Alphabet
Kindergarten is when children get very familiar with their ABCs, so being able to identify some of the letters will be helpful when getting ready for this next step in your child’s early education.
Grip a Crayon, Marker, or Pencil Correctly
The “pinch and flip” method is great for this skill. Lay a writing utensil flat in front of your child with the tip pointing towards them. Have the child pinch the crayon, marker, or pencil like they would pinch somebody else and flip the pencil back toward the child with the eraser going over the hand. Then rest it on their middle finger. This takes practice, but it’s a great building block for their future penmanship.
Write Their First Name Using Upper & Lowercase Letters
Writing names is good practice for learning upper and lower cases of letters. Parents should make it clear to the child that uppercase letters are for the first letter of their name, while lowercase letters are for the rest of the letters in their name.
Be Able to Recognize Names of Colors & Parts of the Body
Being able to name colors and parts of the body someone is pointing to is a great skill to have to get prepared for kindergarten.
Recognize & Produce Words That Rhyme
Books that feature rhyming and repetition are great for your child’s phonological development and can be learned through reading out loud to them. Children should be read to often, every day if possible, and it might be beneficial to get a library card and let them go pick out some books to read with them for the week.
Repeat Their Full Name & Birthdate
Knowing things about themselves like their full name, address, and birthdate are great skills to have when prepping for kindergarten.
Recite the Days of the Week & Months of the Year
Today is Monday, and tomorrow is Tuesday! Reciting the days of the week and months of the year is another building block for early education.
Count to Ten
Counting to ten is a skill most children should know before attending kindergarten, and it gets them familiar with memorization, as well as quantity.
Sort or Classify Objects According to Their Size, Shape, & Quantity
Your child should have some basic knowledge surrounding arranging and classifying objects by their shape, color, size, and quantity in preparation for kindergarten. You can get creative at home with measuring cups or other objects around the house to help them learn this basic skill in a fun, engaging way.
Get Dressed & Manage Bathroom Needs
By the time kindergarten rolls around, your child should be going to the bathroom and getting dressed without much assistance from an adult. Of course, all children will enter kindergarten at different levels of independence, and kindergarten teachers are mindful of those learning curves in a formal educational setting.
Separate from Parents Easily
Sometimes the hardest part of prepping for kindergarten is separating from your child for several hours each day. Perhaps they haven’t been in a child care setting previously or are nervous about being away from their caregivers. Talking to your child about this in advance or reading a book to them that’s geared towards lessening the worry of the first day should ease their separation anxiety.
Creating Well-Rounded Kindergarten Experiences
Find the Just Children location closest to you and schedule a private tour to see what sets us apart from other early childhood care programs in Philadelphia, Medford, and surrounding areas of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Please contact us today to learn more about our exciting, enriched kindergarten programs. We would love to welcome you and your child into our friendly family!