Many parents don't start thinking about preparing for the transition to kindergarten until a month or two before schools begin, because they may not be aware that successful transition to kindergarten is a process that really begins the year before. Whether your child is in preschool or at home with you, the transition can be stressful for both parents and teachers. It's important to start teaching your children the skills that will allow them to succeed in their schools. You don't need to be harsh or set up rigorous rules, but you do need to be dedicated to preparing your child. It's natural for them to have fears and doubts as they start a new experience that will take them away from what they are familiar with. Perhaps the greatest way to prepare your child for this transition is simply to talk with them about what's to come. Here are some other easy things you can start teaching your children now to prepare them for success. |
This is the single most important thing that you can do with your preschoolers. Children like reading books that mirror their daily lives and especially enjoy having the same stories read over and over. As you read, run your finger under the words to show that reading is top to bottom and left to right. Books about letter recognition are great tools. Reading with them every night is also a great bonding ritual.
Develop Fine Motor Skills
Help your child learn a proper pencil grip. Use yourself as a model and praise them often. Start off with large crayons and pencils. You can also work on motor skills by making your child familiar with childproof scissors and playing with play dough.
Teach the Basics of Capitalization
Let your son or daughter know that they should only make the first letter of their name "big." Teachers will certainly be impressed to see this!
Learn How to Follow 2 and 3 Step Instructions
Start giving your child small series of instructions and see how well they can complete each step in order. They'll encounter this a lot in their schools. Try instructions like "go get your shoes and put them on" and "flush the toilet, wash your hands, and dry them off."
Manners will take your kids a long way in school. Model saying please and thank you and listening without interruptions. Talk to your child about raising their hands when they have a question and waiting until they're called on to speak.
Build Self Esteem
Remember to praise your child for their successes. Give them hugs and tell them you love them. Communicate, listen, and answer their endless questions. A curious child's questions reflect their cognitive and emotional development and show that they'll be ready to learn in the classroom.
Transitioning to kindergarten can be hard, but with a little encouragement, your child will certainly do just fine!
When looking for Monmouth county schools, residents visit Ranney School. To learn more, visit http://www.ranneyschool.org/podium/default.aspx?t=151081.
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