Starting kindergarten is always a special occasion—and in the wake of so many school closures during the pandemic, this year will mark an important milestone in your child’s academic journey.
Making the transition to kindergarten can induce apprehension and anxiety in your child, but keep in mind this is normal! To ease those first-day jitters and provide your child with a toolbox to navigate the upcoming transition, you can start incorporating a few daily habits into your routine now.
From helping your child practice writing their name, to reading books together about the first day of school, here’s how to get your child ready for kindergarten this fall.
For children as young as nine months, reading aloud can be highly beneficial. They gain a deeper vocabulary and learn new sounds. If your child doesn’t have a library card yet, consider signing up this summer. The Onslow County Public Library has four different branches: Jacksonville, Sneads Ferry, Richlands, and Swansboro.
Some of our favorite books about going to kindergarten include:
Help your child by talking about getting ready and discussing what a day at kindergarten will be like. Children usually have a lot of questions about their new adventure—so make sure you spend time talking with your child about what kindergarten will be like.
Who will their teacher be? What will their daily routine look like? Some schools offer meet-and-greet days so you can visit the classroom in advance of school starting and meet with the teacher. This can be a fabulous way to ease your child’s nerves and help them begin to envision what their new routines will be like.
As you prepare for your child’s new transition, make sure to involve them in picking out their new gear and school supplies. Do they need a new backpack? A few new clothing items? Selecting new items together can help get your child excited about their new journey.
Over the summer months before the start of kindergarten, start building on your child’s foundation. To make sure your child has a seamless transition to the classroom this fall, here are some of our favorite tips to develop a strong basis for learning:
Whatever feelings your child may express during the lead-up to kindergarten, create a nurturing and inviting environment for your child to share their thoughts, fears, and concerns with you. Ask them how they’re feeling about the new transition and what they’re excited or worried about.
Once your child starts kindergarten, keep an open line of communication open. Getting conversations with your young child about school isn’t always smooth-sailing, but it’s important to give them a safe space to air out their feelings as they age.
Rose, Thorn, and Bud
You can ask your child to tell you about “the rose” of their day—the best thing, a highlight, success, or small win; and “the thorn” of their day—one thing that was challenging, or something where they could use more support. You can also ask about the “bud” of their day—a new idea that may have blossomed or something they are looking forward to knowing more about or experiencing.
You can also ask your child what games they played, what they learned, or if they talked with any new peers.
Reach out to us and we’d be happy to help!