Preparing your child for kindergarten might seem intimidating, but it can be an exciting season for the whole family. As each new milestone is reached, you’ll help your child gain the confidence needed to learn and explore in their new environment.
Children’s Discovery Center is committed to helping families choose the best option and prepare for a dynamic kindergarten experience. Not only do we guide parents in determining kindergarten readiness, but we also offer tips and resources to ensure your child’s success.
Here are a few key areas in which you can prepare your child for kindergarten.
Encourage your child to be independent.
Encouraging independence is one of the ways we help preschoolers develop life skills that will benefit them for years to come. Our Reggio Emilia child care approach involves letting children independently explore the environment around them while being ready to answer questions and lead them in creative learning.
You can encourage independence at home by establishing familiar habits and routines that will help them gain confidence for the school year ahead. Here are a few things to consider:
- Put an alarm clock in your child’s room, and get them used to waking up on their own.
- Enforce good hygiene by teaching your child how to shower, groom, wipe themselves and wash their hands.
- Show your child how to get dressed, and give them plenty of practice buttoning, zipping and tying.
- Teach basic table manners, and encourage independent clean-up after meals and snacks.
Fostering a sense of healthy independence can be challenging, but it is one of the best things you can do. The better your child’s routines and habits, the better they’ll navigate kindergarten and beyond.
Prepare your child to follow instructions.
There’s a proverb that says, “Listen to advice and accept instruction, that you may gain wisdom in the future.”
When parents expect their children to follow instructions at home, it reinforces healthy boundaries and adult/child interactions. This is highly important for kindergarteners entering a classroom environment where class rules can be expected.
Here are some things to consider:
- Teach kindness, compassion and consideration toward others. Reinforce the virtue, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
- Require them to pick up after themselves and put things where they belong. Recite the phrase, “A place for everything and everything in its place.”
- Encourage good listening skills by having them stop what they are doing and give their full attention to the person speaking.
- Practice conflict resolution by teaching your child to stay calm and communicate their needs clearly.
Learning to follow basic instructions is healthy for children of all ages, and implementing these practices at home is a great way to ensure your child is ready for the classroom.
Teach basic literacy skills.
Developing strong literacy skills is one of our main objectives at Children’s Discovery Center. We recognize the importance of language development as a foundation for learning. However, don’t let the word literacy intimidate you. There are simple things you can do at home to nurture language proficiency and naturally prepare your child for kindergarten.
- Encourage your child to sit quietly while listening to a story.
- Help your child express feelings and emotions in healthy ways.
- Teach your child the letters in their name and have them practice tracing them.
- Invite your child to ask questions and be inquisitive of the world around them.
Have fun preparing for kindergarten.
Getting ready for kindergarten isn’t all serious. There are activities you can do at home that will develop your child’s skills while also creating an environment of fun and creativity. Here are a few ideas to try:
- Help your child learn to count through interactive songs. It is recommended children know how to count to 10 before they enter kindergarten.
- Find materials outdoors and make fun nature-based crafts. Using scissors, tape and glue will help develop fine motor skills such as coordination, grip and muscle strength, as well as give your kids the opportunity to create.
- Incorporate physical movement such as balancing, jumping and skipping. These are gross motor skills necessary for healthy development and are easy to practice at home.
All in all, preparing your child for kindergarten doesn’t have to be intimidating. By practicing a few simple skills and habits (and having fun while doing it), your child will be kindergarten ready in no time.If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to contact us. Our staff will help you determine the best kindergarten option for your family and give you the tips, tools and resources needed to make your child’s kindergarten year a success.