Preparing Your Child For Kindergarten
Handbook for Incoming Kindergarten Students and Parents
We wanted to share the following topics and skills related to what kindergarten teachers are looking for when a child enters school for the first time. Following each topic are helpful tips and information to help you and your child get ready for the start of their school career.
- Book Knowledge
- Memory and Paying Attention
- Exploring Language
- ABCs and 123s
What does your child know about books?
Your child should be able to point to where you start reading a book, and which way you go to read, as well as identify the front of the book. The following suggestions encourage book knowledge and will give them the experience they need to become readers.
- Read, read, read to your child!
- Have discussions about the above topics.
- When you are reading, call attention to detail in the picture, point to words, and let your child to fill in predictable words. Ask questions such as, “What will happen next?”, “Why do you think that happened?”, “What did the book make you think of?” and “What was your favorite or least favorite part?”
MEMORY AND PAYING ATTENTION:
Can your child remember and follow through with simple directions?
Children should not be expected to sit for a long amount of time. However, they should be able to have self-control and focus, handle frustration in an appropriate manner, and control impulses. They are expected to listen, follow directions the first time, and remember simple directions.
- Play simple directions games, such as telling your child 3 step directions: stand on one leg, pat your head, and hop to the door.
- Play copycat. You say a sentence, your child repeats it, and vice versa.
- Model appropriate behaviors.
- Encourage your child to speak and answer questions in complete sentences.
What does your child know about our language?
Being able to identify rhyming words, name words that start or end with the same sound, and telling how many words are in a sentence are early language skills. These skills are important to teach beginning readers.
- Play rhyming games that include nonsense words.
- Play word games such as “I Spy”, pull items out of a bag and ask what letter it begins or ends with, cut out pictures to make a sound collage, and have them jump when they hear a word that starts or ends with a certain sound.
- Read poetry or nursery rhymes and point out rhyming words.
- Create simple books together. For example: make a book about colors, animals or a vacation.
ABCs and 123s:
Can your child identify some capital letters, lowercase letters?
Children should be able to recognize their first name, write a few letters of the alphabet, be able to identify the difference between letters and numbers, and recognize some letters of the alphabet out of order.
- Talk about letters individually – what they look and sound like.
- Count to 10 orally, and count various objects to 10.
- Talk about colors and basic shapes. The best way to learn shapes is to use them – through blocks, Playdough, going on a shape hunt around the house, and making pictures using shapes.
- Practice name writing.
- Practice writing letters in shaving cream, paint, sand, etc.
There are other skills along with academics that you can practice with your child such as; getting along with others, being independent, and being safe and healthy. It is also beneficial for them to know their full name, address and phone number. Make coming to kindergarten an exciting and positive experience for your child. Parents are children’s first and most important teachers. Give them the confidence and knowledge they need to grow and become successful.
Jena Funck, K-5 Principal, 717-531-2277 Ext. 5306, email@example.com
Heidi Stine, K-1 Assistant Principal, 717-531-2211 Ext. 6208, firstname.lastname@example.org
Priscilla Stoner, Administrative Assistant, 717-531-2211 Ext. 6200, email@example.com
Suzanne Bressi, Administrative Assistant, 717-531-2211 Ext. 6201, firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information, please call/email our office staff listed above or visit the Derry Township School District website at: WWW.HERSHEY.K12.PA.US