things to teach your child before kindergarten

Many parents worry that their child will not be ready when kindergarten starts. Transitioning from staying at home with a parent to a kindergarten classroom can be difficult for some children, but there are ways you can help them prepare for school. Here are some simple things to teach your child before kindergarten to ensure they will be able to keep up with the rest of the class.

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Sitting Still and Listening
One of the hardest things for children to master in the classroom setting is how to behave appropriately. If your child has never had to sit still and listen in a group setting, the expectations of his or her kindergarten teacher may be difficult to meet. Practice sitting quietly by taking your child to a public event, like a library story hour or a children’s play. Most library workers have a masters in library science and tailor the story selection to benefit children’s learning.

Reading Skills
While children do not have to be skilled readers when they enter kindergarten, helping them master some words before they start school helps them progress faster. You can use age appropriate books to teach vocabulary, or make some flashcards to familiarize your child with simple words.

Eating Independently
Most children who enter kindergarten are capable of eating by themselves but they typically do so at a table with supervision. At school your child will likely eat lunch with only one or two teachers supervising a large group, so they do not get much help with opening snack items or Tupperware containers. Have your child practice opening these items at home so they feel confident during school lunch hour.

Responsibility For Personal Items
With so many children in a kindergarten class and only one teacher, each child has to be responsible for their personal items. Once things are misplaced or lost, it can be hard for the teacher or a parent to find them. Label all of your child’s items clearly with his or her name, and show them where the item is marked so they can easily identify it. Remind them of the items they are to bring home daily, like their lunch box.

Writing Letter Shapes
Teaching your child how to write letter shapes actually teaches them several concepts that will come in handy in kindergarten. Holding a pencil, printing on the lines on a paper will all come in handy in the classroom.

Preparing your child for kindergarten does not have to be a stressful thing. Teaching them a few simple skills is enough to give them a great start. As you help them prepare, your worries about sending them off for the day can also be eased.