As parents, we all want our kids to have a high level of grade school readiness by the time that they start kindergarten. Being a little ahead of the curve will make the transition easier for them, usually. Teachers of kindergartners understand that this might be one of the most difficult transitions if the child has never been away from home and can work with that. However, it’s a good idea to start them academically before they even get into kindergarten. There are several things that parents can do to promote grade school readiness. Here are just a few things that you can do for your kids to make that transition into ‘big kid school’ just a little easier.
Teach them at home. You can actually buy or get home school programs so that you can begin a teaching regime at home with your children, if you feel up to it. There are some great curriculum out there. However, if you are a working parent, this may not be very appealing to you. Just keep in mind that it’s actually a great opportunity to take some time out and sit with your child, having quality time as you teach them and promote their grade school readiness for when the time comes. Kids love when their parents help them with something or they can help their parents so it’s really a win win situation- you get to spend time with them and they can get ahead of the curve when they start school. Take advantage of the time that you have with them and see if you can do something to contribute to their education.
Take them to library storytime. Most libraries have what they call a ‘story time.’ This not includes reading and telling stories that are appropriate for the children but it usually incorporates certain action songs to help promote their hand eye coordination and understanding of numbers, letters, colors, shapes and more. Often times there will be a craft included at the end of the story time. This is usually no more than once or twice a week for an hour, tops. This is a great place to take a toddler to get him familiar with sitting down and listening to an adult with other children. They will mostly likely glean things from the stories to. Story time is a safe way to introduce your kids to a collective gathering of children that is much like school. Children are constantly learning by just looking at the world around them so after story time, take them for a walk in the park and explain to them what everything is. This is a great way to introduce them to new elements that they might not encounter at home.
strong>Enroll them in preschool. Finding the right preschool can be overwhelming, but once you do you’ll see that the benefits of academic preschool are so incredible you’ll be so glad you took the time to find one. Of course, there are certain requirements for preschool, such as your child needs to be potty trained, among other things. Having them in preschool, even just a few days a week for a couple of hours at a time will get them used to the school environment in an age appropriate setting. Not only that but they will learn key skills that they will need once they reach grade school. Preschool is one of the best ways that you can promote grade school readiness in your children.
Provide a cognitively stimulating home environment. After a certain stage, the baby talk needs to stop. Your child should be engaged in good conversation that requires challenging their language ability and linguistic skills. Besides this you could work on lengthening your child’s attention span and use toys to help them learn the essentials. Overall, there is no better way to provide a academically stimulating environment than to read to your children. Read to them as much as they will let you and encourage them to try and read to one another as well. Try and make books their favorite thing to do and this will hit all of the points that you need from attention span to literacy to language skills and cooperation, etc.
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