How can I prepare my daughter for kindergarten next year?

Starting school is an important part of a child's life, and parents play a big role in making sure their kids are prepared. What can I do to give my child a head start and make sure she's ready for kindergarten next year?

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16  Answers

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8 1

While everyone is giving excellent advice about getting her knowledge ready, from my perspective (Primary Teacher) the best thing is to get her excited about school. Walk past it lots, talk aout her teacher, who she might meet, etc. Talk about the routine, discuss getting changed for PE - will she need any new skills? (My little man starts in Sept - he's still getting the hang of socks!) Also, things lijke the school day - what can she expect? Break/lunch/assembly - as long as she knows what to expect she'll be able to be ready to take on new learning experiences because the rest will be familiar and steady. Nothing worse than a lovely activity being hard to get to grips with because a child wasn't expecting to get wet at school! (LOL)

Hope she has a wonderful time, the fact that you're asking means you're the sort of parent who will always do the best for your child - don't worry too much about the rest! xxx

0 11

Its the parents(especially moms) that need to be prepared, I find, not the children! They are just fine, you will be surprised! Most importantly is to keep positive, good luck!

15 17

I think that they need to be socially ready first. I know that there are milestones to be reached, but the most important part of them being open to learning is to feel comfortable around people. My 3yr old enjoys making conversation and approaches other children w/ease. Therefore - I have been able to engage her in much learning as she has a desire to interact. She can count to 40, knows her alphabet, does puzzles and tic-tac-toe and even sings songs from the radio. Her vocabulary is exceptional - I have no doubt that she will thrive in school w/her confidence and desire to learn!

6 1

I gave a talk at a pre school on school readiness. Here is the link

Ideas on the video include:
visit the school and familiarise them with where class will be, play time, bags, toilets etc...
talk about what will happen at school based on what they already know at preschool
practice the kinds of activities they will be doing at school - practice arriving, putting the bag away, have morning tea, have lunch and put lunch box away, sit at a desk and do work - just like a practice run
Role play the difficulties they may come up against - help them develop social skills eg like making friends, needing to go to the toilet during class etc...
I hope that is helpful
Dr Rosina McAlpine

20 65

My son starts to this year...I put him in kinder camp down here he did really good..not sure if they have it where u live but u can check into it...

3 17

What i do is 2 hours a day (i know seems like a lot) i do thinks like: read, hand over hand with mines name, writing the abc, counting( i make mine count every) like you give her strawberries make her count them before she can have them, we also do matching, most fav. be the kids is letting them cut and paste. The prek teacher gave us a list at the end of the school year that had this and sight words to know like: and, a,the,as, to, so, for. workbooks also work, free printables online. is also great love love love this site.

4 0

I discovered after just having my first daughter in kindergarten this year the most important things are counting to at least 40, preferably 100, knowing the alphabet without correction, and learning to recognize each letter and their sounds (that they work on in kindergarten, they dont have to have it down beforehand). Also its important for them to follow directions well and socialize with others well. Hope that helps :)

15 17

My little one knows all that now - she is bugging me to go to school like her sister! She is 3. Hope she still has that kind of enthusiasm when the time does arrive!

25 12

Should talk to her about the friends that she will make, her teacher, and the bus if the rides one. To give her a little head start teach her how to spell her name, learn her colors, and start on her numbers. You don't want her to be bored while at school but she need to know the basics. Hopefully this helps.

7 0

100% agree with Naomi -- get her excitment roaring!! make a BIG FUN deal when u see that big yellow super cool school bus driving by your house everyday like clockwork, let her pick out her own bookbag and lunch box so she's even more ecstatic for that first day, and create differnt (more so realisitc) scenarios of what her day may be like on that first day, and get her on a "school schedule" way before it even starts - this way you know for sure she'll be well rested and adapted to the new "wake up" morning routines. and once that day finally comes, devote a good chunk of your time everyday after school to listen to all the new stories that she will have for you, and let her see that YOU TOO are interested in her new big girl school by shuffling through her bookbag once u hit the front door - she may be so involved in telling you about her art teacher that she almost forgets to show you that she can now count all the way to 20! good luck and enjoy this kindergarden year!!

7 0

oh one more thing!!!! make sure she knows YOUR real name (not just "mom" and "dad" and make sure she knows her home address, and for a bonus, teach her her home phoe number as well. here in new york they actually ask the children these questions during orientation

5 1

There are so many things a parent can do to help their children become school ready. It is good to focus on the academic and social side of things.
For academic you can help your child by inviting them to practise sitting at a desk for extended periods of time with focussed work - eg doing a worksheet or puzzle, and practise keeping their focus when the you read a story. Perhaps you can set a timer for 5 mins, then 10 mins and extend it a little more each time.
Becoming familiar with the school grounds is important so they can navigate where the toilets are, the classroom, where they can get help if they are in trouble. Find out when the school has an open day and attend with your child so they feel like their new surroundings are more familiar.
Practising social skills is so important - you can role play with your child how to introduce themselves to new children and how to make new friends. It is important to make sure you include some difficult social interactions too. Like what could you say if a child doesn't want you to play or doesn't want to be your friend. Your child could respond by saying something like "that's Ok, maybe another time" and then encourage your child to seek out another child on their own who is more likely to be open to a new friend.
For more ideas here is a short YouTube video on school readiness given at the Merrydays pre school on the topic of school readiness

12 0

I taught my son math using Popsicle sticks and workbooks
I taught him shapes, colors, and to write numbers 1-9
I taught him to read using the website (It has free videos lessons for babies-elementary school teaching the Alphabet, Letter Sounds, and Phonics based reading)
I made play dates to teach my son how to socialize with his peers and other adults.

6 10

My five year old started kindergarten 29 days after he turned five years, and my husband and I would never think twicw about it...The Alphabet is very important to know by sound and letters. Practice the one, two and three letter sight words. Enjoy it while it oldest son is turning 7 in 13 days...

45 17

Help your child practice writing his/her name. They should recognize shapes, and be able to name colors that they know. Also, the info Naomi Cole left here, is true and helpful. I took my daughter by her new school already. Just to get her familiar with her new sit, since it's at a different location from her preschool. I've been talking to her about meeting new faces, and been reading with her, and having her work on one-to-one correspondance.

19 40

You can start by getting her books and reading with her and getting puzzles so that she can better her hand eye coordination also im pretty sure walmart has them but I work at walgreens and they have activity books for preschoolers, kindergardeners, first graders and more in the back of the book they even have a certificate that you can give her for completing the book my daughter has the first grade basic one and she loves it. It is very fun. I also have flash cards all around my house on items like for example the door has a flash card on it saying DOOR so that she and my three year old son can learn to associate the words with the actual item. I also speak spanish so I translated the words so they can learn them in spanish and english another big thing is I put my daughter through V.P.K. Volountary Pre Kindergarden. If she's four look into it's a great way to make friends before going to school and helps them be more sociable. Before my daughter went to V.P.K she barely talked and when she graduated from vpk she won a certificate for most improved. Im not entirely sure as to how you can find out how to get your daughter in it. I saw the website for my county on the pbs channel hahaha and also I went to a daycare that had signs that they do vpk. Some schools have vpk some don't a lot of daycares have vpk, also vpk is free so no worries about fees. I hope this helps you out. Goodluck!

3 3

Throughout my daughters 3 years on earth I have gone online to find out what the requirements are for all stages of Kindergarten readiness, including social skills,math skills, etc. Several also give tips on how to accomplish those goals as well. However, out of all the websites that I have come across for my favorite is The goals are practical as well as the tips. The information is found among the Dora things.

1 34

There are a few lists floating around online regarding the things that a Kindergartener should know. I homeschool so I have a slightly different approach; I think the most significant change for your little girl is that her play time is going to be significantly different than what she might be used to. I would recommend that you get a couple of workbooks from the Dollar store and work on her ability to focus on one task for at least 15min at a time., and try to work up to 30 min. intervals of learning. Supporting her in her self-esteem and feeling good about who she is also going to help her in dealing with other children that may not be 'nice'. Subject matter that you want to ensure that she knows must be your responsibility...once you find out what your child's teacher's have the information you need to fill in the gaps. I hope this was helpful! Enjoy this milestone with your child, the year will move very quickly :)

1 9

My daughter started kindergarten this year and I thought we were ready, she has attended a day care with preschool since she was 2. I have no other kids in school so this was a new experience for me. Advice to you: Visit the school she will attenf next year and ask for what is required for your child. Every school is different. This school said my daughter would need to know certain things for very quarter for her grade on the report card. I WAS NOT PREPARED. I did not study much with my daughter since she attended preschool. When she entered school and the teacher told me what she needed to know for her first report card. These thing were her adress, phone #, birthday, and sight words. Set up a study time at home so your child is used to this routine. When you child starts school this will be the one thing that is normal and he/she is used to. At the age of 5 my child does not accept new routines very well and we had a hard time at first. GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!

12 0

My son is four...he can count to 100 as well as multiples of ten to 100, count to ten in 5 different languages, he knows how to tie his shoes, tell time, alphabet, addition subtraction and multiplication..understands the concept of division, knows shapes and colors, his phone number and adress, our first and last names..the list goes on and on... but the thing is, I never sat down and drilled that into him... he learned the spanish counting from dora and chinese/mandarin from sesame street...i explained to him once how multiplication worked and he never forgot.. he is very special and I fear he will not fit in with the other kids because he gets bored easily because he does know alot

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