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Getting Ready for Kindergarten

Helping Your Child Get Ready for Kindergarten

  • Your child should be able to say his first name and his last name. When asked his last name or first name, he should be able to say only the one requested, not both. If your child is called by a middle name or nickname, you must help him learn his first name.
  • Your child should practice saying his age and birthday.
  • This is the way your child should write his/her first name in ball and stick handwriting.
    • John Brown
  • Colors are all around us. Remember, your child should know the eight basic colors plus gray, white, and pink.
  • Counting is something your child can do any time. Practice counting not just to 10, but to 20. Do this naturally as you travel or while you are doing chores at home.
  • Positional terms - Use the following terms as you converse with your child, play games, or travel in the car: top, bottom, inside, outside, in front of, behind, same, different, between, above, over, under, left, right, etc. Line up little cars, animals, or look at a line of traffic and count using positional words to determine which vehicle is first, second, third, fourth, fifth, last, etc.
  • Listening Comprehension - It is so important to read to your child regularly. Let your child point to where you are reading. Make sure your child follows the text with a finger from left to right, following each row of text from top to bottom.
  • Set a purpose for reading before you start a story. (Ex. Let’s read and find out what happens to Mr. Rabbit.) Ask your child questions about the story. Sometimes you may want him to tell the story back to you. If he gets ‘stuck’ at a certain point, remind him what happens next. Questions such as, “What happened after that?” or “Where did they go next?” keeps the sequence of events going.
  • The Lee County Public Library is a great place to borrow books. Be sure to read fiction and non-fiction books to your child. Reading to your child will greatly increase his/her vocabulary and stimulate a love for books and reading.
  • Shapes are all around us. Go on a shape hunt and identify those shapes in your house or shapes on street signs. Your child should be able to tell the difference between shapes. square, rectangle, diamond, triangle, circle, oval
  • To learn the letters of the alphabet, start with a few capital letters. Choose the letters in his name or other letters that have meaning to him. You may want to begin with X M T S A Z etc. Circle them in the newspaper, Look for them as you travel around town. Review them each day and gradually add a few more as your child learns. Matching games and card games are good but you must constantly say the names of the letters or your child will just be matching the shapes of the letters.
  • Numerals 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 can be taught like the alphabet. Find the numbers on receipts, price tags, street signs, speed limit signs, etc. Make numeral cards and have your child count out that many small objects. Sometimes its fun to use cereal, raisins, or other small edible treats. Here are the numerals written with the ball and stick font.
    • 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
  • Your child should be developing independent skills. Be sure to teach your child to tie shoes. Be sure your child can take care of his/her own toilet needs and use a tissue without assistance.
  • When children bring snacks or lunches to school all items should be packaged so the student can easily open it.
  • Your child should be given numerous opportunities and even encouraged to express himself artistically. Hand coordination can be developed through the use of scissors, crayons, markers, paint, etc. Provide toys that require the child to be creative and to reason (ex. puzzles, blocks, games, legos, play-dough, clay, etc.).
  • Require your child to help with every day chores, such as setting the table, making the bed, watering flowers, etc. Picking up toys and other tasks should be daily routines for your child.
  • Limit the amount of time your child spends in front of the TV or even at the computer. Spend time talking and playing with your child. That is always time well invested.