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is my child ready?

KindergartenOne of the most important things a parent can do is READ to their children every day. Read with expression and from time to time, ask you child what they think will happen next. Give your children a choice of books (picture books, story books, poetry books, and factual books). Make sure your children see you reading! Remember you are a model for your children. Don't forget books make great gifts for special occasions.

Below are some activities to help your child in Reading and Language Arts:

Colors
Memory
Alphabet
Stories and Rhymes
Classification

COLORS

   -   Let your child select his/her clothes, by color, to wear to school.
   -   As your child selects clothes, toys, crayons, etc., ask him/her to tell the color of each.
   -   Take a ride with your child and look for cars, signs, etc. in a certain color.
   -   Look in magazines and brochures that come through the mail, and the newspaper (especially on Sunday) for pictures of a certain color. Cut and past the pictures on paper by color and display them in a special place.
   -   Cut strips of colored paper or yarn and have your child sort them by color.
   -   Show your child a magazine picture. Have him/her name the different colors in the picture. Ask your child to identify the objects with the color.

MEMORY

   -   Teach your child to say his/her first and last name, birth date, address, and phone number. Teach information in stages. I found my children learned more easily when the information was set to music. Choose a simple tune.
   -   Teach your child to say his parents’ first and last names.
   -   Help you child learn the name of his/her teacher and grade level.
   -   Ask you child to look in the refrigerator for a minute or two, then close the door. Ask him to name some of the food and other items he saw.
   -   Ask you child to sing a favorite song for you or recite a nursery rhyme.
   -   Listen to short television commercials and jingles with your child. Ask her to repeat them for you.
   -   Just before going to bed, review things that happened that day. Ask your child what was the best thing that happened, what happened first, second, third.
   -   Show your child a detailed picture from a magazine. After removing the picture, see how many items are remembered. You may vary this activity by asking your child to tell you a story about the picture.
   -   Have your child name as many flavors of ice cream as he can. Ask your child which is his favorite flavor. Why? Vary this activity by using cereal, vegetables, sandwiches or school lunches.
   -   Watch your child’s favorite television show with her. Ask your child to name the characters in the show. Vary this activity with favorite story/nursery rhyme characters.

ALPHABET

Collect capital and small letters of the alphabet. Magnetic letters, felt letters, alphabet blocks, alphabet stamp sets, or letters that you print or cut out are useful with the following activities.

   -   Display the capitol A, B,C. Ask you child to point to the letters as you name them. As letters are learned, add three more until all the letters can be identified. This may take a few days so relax and have fun.
   -   While singing the alphabet soup, point to the letters.
   -   Select a letter for the day. See how many times your child can find that letter during the day. Hide the letter, written on cards, in all your child’s favorite places and books. Applaud whenever one of the cards is brought to you.
   -   Make a large pancake or cookie and cut it in the shape of the letter for the day. then your child may eat the letter.
   -   When you feel that your child can identify the letters of the alphabet on his/her own, encourage our child to point to specific letters as you name them. have him/her locate the specific letter from the magnetic letters and place it on the refrigerator.
   -   Have your child box, or circle, or cross the letters you name from the newspaper headlines.
   -   Prepare alphabet soup for your child. Ask him/her to name 5 (vary the number) of letters before eating the soup. This may slow down the meal so relax and have fun.
   -   Using raised letters, glue your child’s name on a sturdy surface such as a board, or on top of the box in which you store the letters of the alphabet. Have your child find and match the letters in his/her name. (The reflector letters and numbers sold in hardware stores for house addresses are raised with a rough surface. These are ideal, just be sure to mount them on a board or tape the edges with masking tape.)

STORIES AND NURSERY RHYMES

   -   Sing and repeat the classic nursery rhymes. Act them out with your child. Example: After reading or reciting “Jack Be Nimble,” have your child jump over a real or imaginary candlestick.
   -   Take your child to the library or bookstore and help him/her select picture books and story books to share.
   -   Ask the librarian or salesperson for age appropriate books.
   -   Your child’s teacher and the school librarian are also valuable resources for recommendations of age appropriate books.

CLASSIFICATION

   -   Take your child to the grocery store. Point out and name the vegetables, cereals, meats, etc.
   -   Give your child jars and lids of different sizes. Ask your child to match them.
   -   Give your child these items to take in the bathtub: crayons, soap, sponges, combs, wood, and plastic toys. See if they float.
   -   Discuss with your child, animals that fly, swim, run, hop, jump, and waddle.
   -   Ask you child to name three things which are worn in pairs.
   -   Have your child cut pictures form a magazine of foods he/she likes best.
   -   Using a store catalog, have your child find items found in the bedroom, kitchen, living room, etc. Have him/her cut and paste the items on sheets of paper labeled for each room.
   -   Have your child name as many things as he/she can that are the following: animals, furniture, things to ride in, etc.

Try not to drill your child on these things. Making these games fun can teach life long lessons in Kindergarten that will prepare your child for the first grade.

kindergarten teaches kids

Robyn's Nest Related Articles:
Is my child ready for Kindergarten?
Preparing Your Child for School
Protecting Children from Abduction
School Bus Safety
Dolch Site Word Lists


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