Starting kindergarten is a huge milestone in a child’s life and one that comes with multiple challenges. Thankfully, there are ways to help your little one adapt and thrive in their new environment.
Show an Interest in Your Child’s Day
Talk about the day with your child. Ask open-ended questions that can’t be answered with yes or no, such as:
- What was your favorite class today?
- What bothered or upset you today?
- What do you enjoy learning?
- What can I help you with that you’re learning?
Parental involvement is still important even if you aren’t your child’s primary teacher. You can head off problems and prepare your child for success if you know what’s going on in school. Parental involvement also shows children you care about their achievements and successes.
Help Your Child Learn Practical Life and Social Skills
Children will learn important life skills in kindergarten, but you can help them get off to a good start if you practice these skills at home. Young children who know how to dress themselves, keep clean, eat with good manners, and use the restroom on their own will gain self-esteem as they master important tasks without help.
Teaching social skills is also important. Arrange play dates with friends to help your child practice sharing and working with others. Teach your child basic etiquette rules and use these rules in your home, so your little one will be used to saying “please,” ‘thank you,” “excuse me” and “you’re welcome.”
Children who are naturally shy may need extra help learning how to interact with others. Help them make new friends at the local park, or take them out with you to meet your friends. Talk about how to approach other people, introduce oneself, and respond positively to someone who greets you.
Practice Basic Academic Skills at Home
Children in kindergarten should learn how to recognize and write the letters of the alphabet, recognize and write the numbers from 1 to 10, cut with scissors, and recognize basic shapes and colors. Practice these skills in a fun way at home to reinforce what they learn in school.
Sallie B. Howard is a public charter school offering kindergarten registration and school enrollment for grades one to 12. We take pride in helping children of all ages gain needed academic, social, and extracurricular skills they will need to succeed in life. Contact us to learn more about our mission or to start the enrollment process for one or more children.