When you think about kindergarten prep, it’s typical to think about reading and math—and, while those are core foundations of learning, there are other areas to consider. Here are a few examples.
You might wonder how to help your child start to understand science, but no worries! Parents.com offers a simple way to observe nature together. Go outdoors to find trees, shrubs and flowers. It might be as close as your backyard. If not, then a nearby park. Take along a magnifying glass and look for evidence of seeds. This can be as easy as catching dandelion fluff and examining it together. Keep your eyes peeled for a snail and watch it slowly move. Ask your child what it might feel like to live in a shell. For more ideas like this, check your library forIt's a Jungle Out There! 52 Nature Adventures for City Kids by Jennifer Ward.
MommyOnTheLoose.com also suggests using plants as fun educational tools. You can visit a nursery together to buy soil and seeds to grow your own. Get age-appropriate books from the library that share fun information about plants and flowers, and read them together.
Practicing and Preparing for New Routines
Here’s something that’s easy to overlook: Some children need guidance in adjusting to packing a lunch. So let your child choose a lunchbox that makes him or her smile, pack a nutritious lunch you know your child will enjoy and have a fun picnic together as practice. This tip comes from TeachMama.com, which also recommends you bling a backpack together. You can have fun decorating the backpack, perhaps by using “felt flower pins” or whatever else you brainstorm together. Having a readily identifiable backpack also will reduce your child’s anxiety about finding it at day’s end.
Fine motor skills also are important and HubbardsCupboard.org offers fun ways to develop them, including:
- Make necklaces together with string and whatever you have around the house or can easily obtain, such as beads or even Fruit Loops cereal
- Give your child a pair of tweezers and a pair of tongs; put together a collection of objects and have him or her try to pick them up with those tools
- Give your child construction paper in a variety of colors and suggest that he or she tear them up into various shapes (or cut them with scissors) and then glue them on cardboard to make a fun collage
In kindergarten, your child will be asked to identify what’s bigger and what’s smaller, as just one example. In preparation, here are two online games to help your child with the concepts of alike and different:
No matter which of these ideas you try, remember that when children are having fun, they are more likely to want to keep at an activity, and repetition will help them learn crucial foundation skills.
Horizon Education Centers Preschool Program
If you live in Lorain or Cuyahoga counties and have a pre-kindergarten child, we encourage you to visit to discuss our preschool program (ages 3-5). You can count on:
- Rich educational services in preparation for kindergarten, aligned with appropriate ODE-approved standards
- Qualified teaching staff working with your child every day to prepare him or her socially and academically for kindergarten
Discover more about our pre-kindergarten child care now!