How do I prepare my child...

Discussion in 'Early Childhood Education Archives' started by Laurie61, Jun 10, 2005.

  1. Laurie61

    Laurie61 Rookie

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    Jun 10, 2005

    Help…

    As a parent of a 4 yo, what should I be doing at home to help prepare her for kindergarten in 2006? She will be moving to Kindercare in Aug and they have a curriculum program.

    Right now, we read every day. Not on a daily basis we also practice writing letters, name, numbers and holding a pencil correctly. I also bought a pre-k book to help out.

    I don’t know how much I should push her or if I’m teaching her bad habits. Any advice would be helpful. Thx
     
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  3. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    Jun 10, 2005

    When teaching her to write her name make sure you are teaching her the way that the school will want her to write it. I have seen many parents teach their kids to write their names in all capital letters and then the kids have to learn it all over again when they get to K.

    It's great that she's going to go to a program the year before, just make sure the teachers are following with their lessons. I don't have high respect for daycare "chains" but that is because the ones in our area are really bad. I wont say anything more than that unless you really want to know.

    A lot of K teachers (if not all) want to make sure that the kids can sit for periods of time and stay focued in a group setting, know their manners, etc. Social skills seem to be lacking these days and it's important. Make sure she knows her letter names (upper and lower) and numbers, can cut with scissors, write her first name and last (preferably, but sometimes not required), knows her phone number and address, is independant when need be (i.e. ties her shoes, put on her own jackety and zip it up...). Gosh, let me see! I'm just gonna throw some stuff out there that I work with my pre-K kids on...counting up to 30, tracing and making shapes, cutting, holding and writing with a pencil correctly, identifyiing patterns, colors and shapes, letter sounds. I could go on, but for some reason I can't think of everything right now. I am sure someone else will plug in some more when they read the post.

    The only sure way you are actually going to know what to teach her is by calling the local school where she will be attending, or the school district office. Our standards may be way off from what yours is. Hope this helps a bit:) Good luck. If I think of anything more I'll let you know:)
     
  4. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    Jun 10, 2005

    practice rhyming words; read books and talk about the title, author, reading left to right, etc; point to each word as you read so that your child understands the printed/spoken connection. I think the most important thing is just talking with your child, incorportate the things you're trying to teach her into a regular conversation (ex: oh look there's a cat- /k/ /a/ /t/ cat. Cat starts with "c". Can you think of any othe words that start with "c"?). Good Luck!
     
  5. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    Oh, duh me-two things that are also important: words that begin with the letters and reading/writing left to right progression!!! Again, check the school, our standards may be different. Thanks Danny'sNanny-I can't believe I forgot to mention those two things:)
     
  6. Margo

    Margo Devotee

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  7. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Jun 10, 2005

    Use a muffin tin and have your child sort common items like clothespins, beans, macaroni, etc., by color or shape. Count the items, then put two items in each space and count. Make patterns with several colors and have your child replicate them. Make it a game. Do puzzles together. When reading books, stop at times and have your child predict what will come next. Make sure your child sees you reading for pleasure yourself. Play games with concepts like over/under, behind/in front - maybe use a beach ball and throw it over a teddy bear, behind the chair, etc. Play games where you compare amounts - who has more dominoes? who has less? Give your child ample opportunities to scoop and pour - water, rice, sand, anything at all. Make a variety of containers and scoopers available. Let your child use a hole punch and decorate with the dots. Dance and exercise with movements that cross the midline with arms and legs - this helps train the brain for left to right tracking. Have fun!
     
  8. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    Jun 11, 2005

    Cooking and baking is a great way to teach math. I like to use a smaller measuring cup than it calls for to practice counting ("OK, now we need to fill this eight times with flour. Can you help me count?"). And the kids love eating their creation at the end ;)
     
  9. Filefolderqueen

    Filefolderqueen Rookie

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    Jun 11, 2005

    I am sure that you are doing more than you think. Instill a love of learning and that will go far. NOt pushing her to learn skills- you want her to know that learning is fun and not stresssful.

    Social emotional skills are just as important as academic ones.

    Using a lot of language with her- reading signs to her etc... Let her shop with the coupons that you may be using- matching food items to the coupon. Let her sort laundry ie... match socks.

    Nursery Rhymes are great for pre reading as well.

    Chalk boards or a dry erase board are also great. Plain draeing paper with crayons etc... alow for individuality indrawing.

    Rememebr that play is a childs work-even in Kindergarten.
     
  10. becky

    becky Enthusiast

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    Jun 11, 2005

    I started teaching my 4 yr old when she was about 18 months. I helped her learn the alphabet letter names and sounds, numbers, colors.
    She's learning to cut with scissors.
    As she got older,I went to my school's website and found the kindergarten benchmarks, and worked from there.
    The one thing she has trouble with-unless she's pulling my leg- is left and right.
     
  11. lowrie

    lowrie Companion

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    Jun 12, 2005

    Do you mean she sometimes mistakes her left for her right? Heck I'm a lot older than she is and I sometimes do that too ;-)

    Seriously though, what do you mean?
     
  12. AMK

    AMK Aficionado

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    Jun 12, 2005

    I think it is great what you are doing. I recommand if you are going to teach her to write her name, have her it do properly. Kids have a hard time making the transition to lowercase letters. I told my friend whose son is 4 to do the same. Have your child make letters in sand, shaving cream, and play dough. My students love writing on a chalk board with wet paint brushes.
    A suggestion I recieved from another teacher was to give children small
    pencils (golf pencils) if they are struggling holding their pencil. I have used that with some of my children who do not hold their pencil correctly.

    Work on coloring in the lines and using different colors for pictures. I have some students who use one color and I tell them they need to use more. Work on cutting too.

    When working on identifying letters go on a scavenger hunt and see how many letters you can find.

    Work on positions: above, below, under, left, right

    Like another post said manners are a big one. I don't do anything for my students unless they say please, thank you and so on. We work on sharing and being respectful with others.

    Good Luck
     
  13. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    What does using different colors do? Shouldn't they be free to choose which ones they want to use? Just a question, I'm not trying to sound rude or anything :cool: .
     
  14. becky

    becky Enthusiast

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    Jun 13, 2005

    lowrie, she'll do a thing where if I ask for one arm/leg( like during shower time.) she'll give me the other. Putting her shoes on, she'll put them on the wrong feet even though I drew smiley faces inside them so the smiles would touch the inside of her ankles if the shoes are on right.
    She's a trip, though. She also will try to put both shoes on the same foot!!
     
  15. lowrie

    lowrie Companion

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    she sounds adorable becky :)
     
  16. Laurie61

    Laurie61 Rookie

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    Jun 13, 2005

    Thanks everyone for the tips. We started using some this weekend. I asked her if she could help me out by sorting some beads for me. Now she's asking me if she can sort some more. Also, we went to the bookstore and read a variety of different books.

    I'll be using more of your suggestions. My school district does not have any information on their website about preparing kids for kindergarten. I'll call them this week. I would call the school but I want to place her in a magnet school and won't know if she is accepted until May 2006.
     
  17. becky

    becky Enthusiast

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    Jun 14, 2005

    Laurie,
    When you call them ask if you can come and preview their kindergarten curriculum.
    Go to the school's website and look for elementary curriculum. From there it should get divided up by grade. There, it should get divided up by subject. You might get lucky and there will be links to practice work.

    Once I found our school's kindergarten curriculum/ outcomes, I printed it out and found activities that would teach each outcome. Some of it is so vague. I'm just going down the list of each subject and crossing them off as we finish. In theory, in September when she should be entering kindergarten my daughter will actually be ready for 1st grade. We've got so much to do yet, though.

    Laurie, would you like me to send you what I printed out, so you might get an idea of what you're looking for?
     
  18. becky

    becky Enthusiast

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    lowrie, you would have fell over the night I told her to get her skivvies on after her shower. She put them on.... on her head!!
    She is a card, though.
     
  19. Laurie61

    Laurie61 Rookie

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    Jun 16, 2005

    Thanks becky

    I called the school and I have the ones for my area.
     
  20. jeanie

    jeanie Companion

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    Jun 16, 2005

    I agree with what JenPooh says wholeheartedly, but also with what Filefolderqueen says even more so. Don't get worried about what your child does not know before K. Aside from writing the name using the correct model of upper case and lower case letters (if learned with all uppercase, this is a hard habit to break) and having the basic ability to take care of getting dressed and handle the bathroom...encourage your child to be curious, caring and cooperative. Learning anything, then, will be a good experience for both your child and her teacher.
     
  21. CanadianTeacher

    CanadianTeacher Groupie

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    As mentioned somewhere above, I would focus more on social skills - kids with horrible social skills make a teacher's job much more difficult as we all know. I think just giving your child a wide variety of experiences and opportunities for exploration is the best preparation.

    Oh, and one thing that just came to me.....(and take it from a stay at home mom)....prepare your child to be able to handle you leaving her. It may not be an issue with your child, but it was with mine. I was a stay-at-home mom, with them 24/7 and my oldest was VERY attached to me. She cried all of Junior Kindergarten and till Christmas in Kindergarten - she would get nauseous when I was about to leave her. The teacher was actually my cousin and I knew many people at the school, so I knew it was nothing more than separation anxiety, but it was very hard on both of us. I tried listening to the teacher and just leaving quickly when I would bring her to school, but after a couple of weeks, that didn't work. I did it more slowly and my own way after that by picking her up for lunch everyday (luckily I could) and by Christmas in Kindergarten I was able to leaver her at school all day. Anyway, she is now one of the most confident, outgoing, invovled kids at her school, 6 years later but I learned that it doesn't matter how many times the teacher has seen it or how sure she is as to how you should deal with separation anxiety, you as a parent knows what's right, so if this should happen, don't be afraid to do things your own way.
     
  22. Ateacher

    Ateacher New Member

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    Jun 16, 2005

    Preparing child for Kindergarten

    Lots of good advice given, but if you do all that is suggested, what will your child learn in kindergarten if she already knows everything. The best advice you have been given is to teach your child to stay focused, switch from activity to activity in a short period of time and remember her manners. The kindergarten teacher will enhance what she already knows in letters and number, etc and she will be well on her way to reading very soon. You are doing many things right at home by just reading to her everyday!
     

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