Do you have a child heading to kindergarten in the fall? Now is the time to assure he or she is ready! Your child may be excited or have many questions. Addressing these questions, supporting academic readiness, and providing emotional support will ease the transition and build a foundation that will foster a love for learning. The following are some general skills students are expected to have upon entering kindergarten, according to the Illinois Early Learning Project:
- Hold and use a pencil, crayons, and scissors.
- Speak well enough for others to understand what she is saying.
- Say her full name and how she gets to and from school.
- Handle self-care tasks such as hanging up her coat, going to the toilet, and washing her hands.
- Get along with most children and adults and respect others’ property and rights.
- Work alone and with others.
- Sit and listen for about 15 minutes.
- Remember and carry out two or three directions.
- Finish a task he/she starts.
- Follow rules and be willing to take turns.
For more specific guidelines, check out this kindergarten readiness indicators assessment. http://www.recognitionandresponse.org/images/downloads/transition/school_readiness/3_checklist.pdf
These are skills that should be practiced and embedded into everyday routines. If you don’t have consistent routines, now is the time! It will be important that your child can follow daily routines with an increasing level of independence. Encourage your child to become more independent by offering opportunities and slowly increasing expectations.
In addition, your child will have to meet health and safety requirements including a physical and updated vaccinations, as well as completion of a preschool screening. Contact your local school district for specifics.