Sunday, April 21st is National Kindergarten Day. Here at the library we love educating and entertaining young minds in order to prepare them for school. In addition to story times, we also have early literacy resources and tips that will help you, as parents, get your child ready for kindergarten.
Some of the basic activities you can do at home or anywhere you go include reading, talking, singing, writing, and playing. This is part of the Every Child Ready to Read @ Your Library (ECRR) initiative sponsored by PLA, the Public Library Association (a division of the American Library Association) and ALSC, the Association for Library Services to Children. Other than being a mouthful, what exactly does this mean?
Basically, you as a parent have the opportunity and the responsibility to be your child’s first teacher. Here are some practical ways you can prepare your child to be a better learner:
- Read daily to your child. Ask questions about the stories you read and have your child retell the story. Visit the library (we love that suggestion!) and let your child select her own books.
- Talk with your child about what is happening each day. Talk about your routine as you are doing it. Allow your child to talk to you as well, and ask follow-up questions. Give words to things and ideas you come across and add more detail to what your child says.
- Sing nursery rhymes and silly songs together. Sing the alphabet song to help your child become familiar with letter names. Clap along to the rhythm in songs to help him hear the separate syllables in each word.
- Write things down and let your child pretend to read them. Encourage writing with a variety of of crayons, pencils, pens, and markers. Point out print all around you and spell out the letters as you see them.
- Play is one of the best avenues for children to learn. Pretending to do the things they see mommy or daddy do helps them express themselves and put thoughts into words. When you encourage play, you are helping your children learn important things like how to share, how to take turns, and how to solve problems.
Most area schools either have already had or will soon be having their own kindergarten registration. Your child will most likely be evaluated to see how ready he or she is to start school in the fall. If you notice that your child is slightly behind, there are lots of things you can do over the next few months to give her a jump start. One of the best things you can do is to join our Summer Library Program, which runs through June and July. You can also focus on basics like shapes, colors, the alphabet, and writing and drawing.
- Connect with ECRR on Facebook.
- Ohio’s own Ready to Read initiative goes right along with ECRR.
- This Ohio Department of Education pdf guide tells families what they can do to help their child get ready for kindergarten.
- Here’s what your child needs to know by the end of kindergarten, which is based on the Common Core State Standards adopted by Ohio and 44 other states.