How To Prepare A Child For Kindergarten If They Didn't Attend Preschool

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How To Prepare A Child For Kindergarten If They Didn't Attend Preschool

14 April 2016
 Categories: Education & Development, Blog

More and more children are attending preschool, which means they already know what to expect and how to quickly integrate into a kindergarten classroom. This can make you nervous that your child may appear behind if they have never attended a preschool program. Fortunately, there are ways that you can help get your child ready in the months leading up to their first day of school. The following tips can help.

Tip #1: Practice the Basics

The basics doesn't refer to reading, writing, and arithmetic. Basics are the standard protocols used in most kindergarten classrooms. This includes raising the hand, sitting still, not talking out of turn, and getting permission to leave the room. All of these can be very foreign concepts for a child who is used to freedom during the day and who doesn't usually have to ask permission for a bathroom break. One way to help your child learn these basics is to spend some time during the day playing school with the child. Be positive and upbeat, reminding your child of the expectations without getting upset when they make a mistake.

Tip #2: Spend Some Time on the Three R's

You can also spend some time practicing academics, but you don't need to stress it too much. If your child is coming from a loving home and you spent time reading to them in the previous years, chances are they are more than capable of keeping up with their peers. If you want a little more structure, purchase a workbook aimed at developing kindergarten readiness. These usually go over the alphabet, shapes and colors, and basic counting skills. They may also have some focus on early reading and math skills. You can use the workbook when playing school with your child.

Tip #3: Practice a Few Key Skills

There are certain skills your child should have if they are ready for kindergarten. First and foremost, make sure your child is able to follow simple two to three step instructions, such as "push in your chair and then join the reading circle." It is also helpful if they can write their name – first name at a minimum if you have a long or complicated last name. You may also want to work with them on their pencil grip to ensure they are holding it correctly. You can purchase low-cost grip correctors at office supply stores. These slide onto a pencil so your child has to hold it correctly.

Although you may be nervous, rest assured that within a few weeks most of the kids in the class will be learning at a similar level regardless of their former preschool experience. If you have further questions, speak with the kindergarten teacher for more advice.