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Preparing Families for the Transition to Kindergarten

October 9th, 2017 | 1 min. read

By Ashleigh Craven

Family involvement is an important part of kindergarten readiness! The first day of kindergarten is both an exciting and scary time for many kids and their families. But, helping families get their child ready for kindergarten doesn’t have to be hard.
Families and teachers can (and should!) partner to help children prepare for kindergarten and get the most out of their education.  Oftentimes, parents want to help but just aren’t sure where to begin.
Building a strong home-school connection is one of the most effective ways you can engage families. For example, keeping families informed on what kindergarten skills their students are learning helps prepare them for the transition to kindergarten. Or, simply talking with parents creates a bond between home and the classroom, too.
Kick-Start Kindergarten Readiness is the perfect tool for early childhood teachers to involve families in understanding and supporting the rich learning taking place in your preschool classroom. Try out these tips to involve families in your classroom today.

Oral Language and Vocabulary

  • The ability to full express themselves verbally is an important skill for kindergarten children.
  • Encourage family members to talk with and listen to their children. By simply naming objects and answering their children’s questions as best they can, they will encourage important vocabulary growth.
  • Simple encouragement and reinforcement at home will nurture children’s oral language skills and vocabulary development to help them be ready for kindergarten.

Social-Emotional Skills

  • Social-emotional skills are so important to a child’s success in kindergarten. Young children are learning how to interact with others, how to wait for a turn, how to ask to play with a friend, and how to handle and express their emotions. They do not need to be experts in all of these skills by the time they start kindergarten, but they are certainly beginning to learn them.
  • Families can support their children’s social-emotional learning through simple activities at home. They can help children name emotions: “I see you frowning. I think you might be mad,” or “I see you smiling. Are you happy?”
  • Encourage families to reinforce social-emotional awareness at home with activities such as playing games and doing puzzles together, taking turns in a family dance part, and finding ways for their child to be a helper at home.

Author(s)Alison Pepper

Ashleigh Craven

Ashleigh Craven has a decade and a half of diverse category experience from agency communications to athletic apparel to automotive to education, developing and executing communication strategies in both traditional and social media. She has supported national product launches and corporate events for the likes of Soffe, Buick, Chevrolet, Wake Forest University , Kaplan, and others. She has an BA from the University of Michigan in English and Communication Studies and an MA from Wake Forest University, where she focused her studies on argumentation and presidential rhetoric and speechwriting. She served as director of marketing for Gryphon House from 2017- 2020.