Education

4 Ways To Prepare Your Child for Kindergarten

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The transition from Pre-K to kindergarten marks an important developmental transition in a child's life. Children entering kindergarten come from a wide variety of educational backgrounds. At The Gardner School, we focus on what a child can do rather than what they can’t when helping our students make the transition into kindergarten.

So, how will you know your child is kindergarten ready? Here are 4 ways to help prepare your child for kindergarten.

Kindergarten Preparation 

1. Explore your child’s fine motor skills. 
Your child may display the ability to catch and throw with some consistency, as well as walk in a straight line both forward and backward. He or she may enjoy hopping, skipping, or riding a tricycle. When it comes to fine motor skills, set aside some time to work with your child on using safety scissors, putting together puzzles, and holding a pencil or crayon in a non-fisted grip. Using crayons and markers in a variety of different thicknesses can also help strengthen fine motor skills. 

2. Practice letter, number, color, and shape recognition.
At the Pre-K stage, your child may recognize many letters in both uppercase and lowercase forms. He or she can likely recite the alphabet and may already associate sounds with certain letters. Pre-K students can probably count to 10 as well. To enhance recognition skills, schedule some time to help them learn colors and shapes by pointing out circles, squares, and triangles in various colors while you are out walking or grocery shopping. Another easy way to practice these skills is to include your child in sorting laundry by color, shape, or size. 

3. Polish listening and social skills. 
As your child moves on from preschool, observe if he or she listens well to adults and displays respect for authority figures. Other key observations include listening for your preschooler to say "please" and "thank you," as well as collaborating and sharing with other children while playing. Pre-K students should communicate with peers effectively and have the ability to play make-believe with others. To help children develop listening and social skills, try setting up play dates with children of various ages so they can learn to interact with both older and younger kids. 

4. Prepare your child for the transition. 
Starting kindergarten is an exciting yet anxiety-ridden time for both parents and children. It's a good sign when your child is enthusiastic about starting and is asking you questions about his or her upcoming life experience. As children ask you these questions, make sure to answer them in full detail, letting them know what to expect when attending a full day of school.

If your child is a student at The Gardner School, he or she will already be accustomed to full days of school and many regular activities that will be experienced in kindergarten, such as handwriting, working with letters, language and phonics, creative art projects, and playing with other children. 

Kindergarten at The Gardner School

The Gardner School’s kindergarten program at select schools features a full-day curriculum and a schedule that will fully prepare your child for the first grade. With a research-based Imagine It! Curriculum and teacher/student ratios that are nearly half those of most public and private schools, your child will gain an academic edge right from the start.

Schedule a visit at one of our schools to see for yourself how The Gardner School is truly where learning begins. To learn more about The Gardner School’s kindergarten program at select locations, please visit the following sites:

 The Gardner School of Blue Ash (Cincinnati) Kindergarten Program

The Gardner School of Dublin (Columbus) Kindergarten Program

The Gardner School of Glenview-Northbrook (Chicago) Kindergarten Program

The Gardner School of Midtown (Nashville) Kindergarten Program

The Gardner School of Naperville (Chicago) Kindergarten Program