Ready, Set, Grow!
As the New Year begins, so does the time for kindergarten registration! As parents you start to evaluate if your child is ready for this next learning adventure. But you may be asking yourself, “What exactly do they need to know in order to be ready?” Shapes and colors is a great start to getting them kindergarten ready. Colors and shapes are all around us, use things in their everyday life to help teach them. Fine motor skills are key for holding a pencil and cutting with scissors. Literacy/phonemic awareness is the understanding of letters and the sounds that they make. Your child should be able to write their name. Have them trace letters of the alphabet and letters of their name. Teach both upper and lowercase letters. Using salt/sand writing trays is a fun hands-on way to get your child writing.
Parents often get caught up in the academic aspect of kindergarten that they forget about the social and emotional skills their child may need in order to strive in a new setting. Play is a big part of Pre-K and that’s when children learn how to share and take turns and solve problems with peers. We as adults also need to be able to refrain from solving the problem for them and allow the child to come up with a solution. Children who are able to recognize other people’s emotions will be able to get along with others better and they will also be able to help a friend in need. They also need to have the language skills both receptive and expressive. Your child should be able to express their thoughts and needs and then in then be able to understand what others are saying to them. Ultimately children need to understand how to self-regulate their emotions and behaviors for the appropriate situation and they have to be ready to learn.
Kindergarten is a new territory for both you and your child. There is no need to make it stressful on anyone. As long as they have learned social and emotional skills they will be ready to learn and thrive throughout school. Being able to socialize with adults and peers and regulate conflicts will go a long way, the academics will always be there.
Morgan, Amanda. “Your child’s social skills in kindergarten are more important than their academics.” Motherly, https://www.mother.ly/child/your-childs-social-skills-in-kindergarten-are-more-important-than-their-academics