Tooele County School District

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Teaching and Learning » Preparing for Kindergarten

Preparing for Kindergarten

Preparing for Kindergarten

 

We’re excited for your child to start kindergarten, but probably not as excited as you are! We appreciate the value of the parent-school partnership.

To prepare your child for kindergarten, here are a few research-based suggestions:

#1: Read to your child daily

Read with your child for at least 20 minutes every day. This has many benefits. First, your child begins to associate reading with the positive experience of spending time with you! This contributes to increased motivation to read. Next, you serve as a model of how to read fluently, which is very important for early readers. Finally, when your child reads to you, your support with difficult words makes their experience more enjoyable. All of these benefits combine to help your student to become a motivated and successful reader! 

A few tips for reading at home:

-Read different types of books including story picture books, non-fiction, poetry, magazines, etc.  

-Talk about the story as you read, ask questions, and encourage your child to ask questions.

-Have your child discuss what they think and what they've learned.

 

#2: Develop fine motor skills

Fine motor skills are important to the development of your child. Fine motor skills involve the use of the smaller muscle of the hands. Fine motor skills enable children to do activities like write, cut with scissors, button shirts, and play with Legos. To help your child develop these skills, expose them to basic drawing, coloring, cutting and writing are activities. Most children love learning to spell their name. This can be a motivational place to start—teach them to write their name using a capital letter for the first letter and the rest in lowercase. Click here for more information about developing fine motor skills.

 

#3: Develop letter and alphabet knowledge

One of the first and most important early reading skills is knowledge of letters and the alphabet. Initially, knowledge is built by being exposed to books and written information. This helps children to recognize that letters and words carry meaning. To teach your child about letters, start with the letters in their name. Make a game out of finding letters in various places in the world. If your child seems ready, introduce the sounds of the letter too!  

You can visit this website as a resource to develop letter knowledge: https://www.esc4.net/rla/interactives

 

#4: Increase vocabulary and oral language skills

Children benefit from being surrounded by environments rich in language. You can help your child to acquire language by talking to them, reading to them, and asking them questions. Avoid talking to their level as children expand their knowledge by being exposed to new and expansive vocabulary. Make a habit of engaging your child in frequent conversation about all kinds of topics.