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Uncommon Tips for Children Starting Kindergarten

The transition to kindergarten can be a challenging time for both students and parents. Stephanie Jones, principal at Advantage Charter Academy, has 13 years of educational experience and has previously served in roles that supported kindergarten through second-grade students. 
 


In honor of August being Get Ready for Kindergarten Month, Jones is offering some tips that aren’t usually top-of-mind for parents as their kids enter kindergarten.
  1. Routine bedtime. Scholars begin school early, many before 8 a.m., and maybe earlier. It is very important that your child has a routine bedtime. Their day is filled with rigorous learning and activities that require a full night’s sleep. 
  2. Practicing their first and last names. This may seem small, but it is important for your child to know their first and last name, not a nickname. Many parents may have called their child(ren) by a nickname since birth. It’s time to begin calling your scholar by the name on their school documents, and have them identify it. 
  3. ABC’s. It is recommended that scholars know their alphabet before starting kindergarten. This helps decrease confusion and increase comprehension. 
  4. 30 minutes of reading time. Begin to read to your child daily for at least 30 minutes. Make sure your scholar is sitting up and paying attention. Stop and ask questions. This is to enhance your child’s sitting and listening skills.
  5. Counting. It is recommended students know how to count to 20.  
  6. Being Independent. Begin to have your scholar put on their own clothes. This includes zipping up pants, tying shoes, wiping their nose, and putting on a jacket.
  7. Eat with your child daily. As you are eating, practice opening containers, condiment packets, and opening their own food. This will help during lunch time. 
  8. Writing. Scholars should be able to write some letters. Allow your scholar to trace on plain paper. Also, allow them to write you a story once or twice a week. The writing does not matter – it’s all about creativity and exposure to writing. 
  9. Using words. If your scholar is used to pointing at things that they want, begin to have them use words. This helps with social skills.  
  10. Motor skills. Practice holding pencils, crayons, scissors, and glue with your child. These items are used daily. 
Parents want nothing more than a high-quality education for their child. Starting in kindergarten, be a partner with your child’s teacher and school. Students can excel academically if there is structure and support, plus social interaction.

August is Get Ready for Kindergarten Month, a time to prepare children for the beginning of their academic career.