Looking ahead to a new year is always exciting. If your child is starting kindergarten in 2021, you’re probably already feeling mixed emotions about this significant milestone. Every parent wants their child to begin their first formal school year on the right foot, and naturally, many wonder if their little one is ready for the new challenges ahead. It’s likely your 4 or 5-year-old heard you talking about kindergarten and may be feeling their own mix of excitement and nervousness.

Fortunately, the entire family can feel more equipped for a successful year with a little preparation. Since every child’s foundation for learning is built at home, here are seven easy ways you can prepare your preschooler for the year ahead. 

Download our KinderReady E-Book for a full list of readiness skills,
as well as more information on kindergarten at Gaston Christian!

Read aloud daily.

Exposure to new books is beneficial at every age. Even if your child is not the one reading yet, they are observing sight words, learning letter sounds, and expanding their vocabularies. In preparation for kindergarten, start asking them to retell a favorite story in their own words, which fosters comprehension. 

Name feelings.

Kindergarten will bring about a variety of new emotions. Teaching students to name their feelings gives them the tools to feel safe and seek support as they need it. When you notice your child experiencing an emotion, teach them to communicate feelings such as excited, angry, sad, overwhelmed, or anxious. 

Count everything.

Counting and sorting everyday objects provides a strong foundation for learning math. Ask your child to help count how many bananas you brought home from the grocery store, or to help you sort laundry by color. These simple tasks allow children to feel a sense of empowerment as they prepare to build on their current skills through addition, subtraction, and patterns.

Socialize safely. 

Developing socially is a huge part of the kindergarten experience. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many preschoolers missed out their opportunity to hone these important skills. Consider partnering with a family who has similar-aged children and safety standards to provide your child with a chance to socialize. Whether it’s unstructured play or parent-led projects, the result is advantageous. 

Limit screen time.

It’s no surprise that young children are interacting with screens more than ever. While technology can be an incredible tool for learning, be sure to mix in plenty of outdoor play and indoor activities such as arts and crafts. These will provide your child with the fine and gross motor skills required for kindergarten success.

Emphasize independence. 

Kindergarten will require a few more self-care skills than preschool. Practice proper handwashing, snapping buttons, zipping zippers, putting on shoes, and opening lunch items regularly, so your child can feel confident when he or she needs to do these things away from home.

Discuss goals.

As your family outlines goals for 2021, start thinking about long-term objectives for your child’s education. If spiritual growth is an important part of this, you might consider exploring local Christian schools that align with your family’s beliefs and values. 

Learn More about Kindergarten at Gaston Christian School

Still considering the best kindergarten environment for your child? We invite you to come tour Gaston Christian School! We would love to share more about our philosophy of education, our kindergarten schedule, and all the ways we’re making safety a priority alongside excellent education. Schedule your visit today or RSVP for an Open House on January 14, 2021 and February 23, 2021 at 6:30 PM.

Click below to download your Kindergarten Readiness guide.

ready for kindergarten

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