Will my child be on the same academic level as his classmates?
Will he be able to make new friends?
Will he know how to let his teacher know what he needs?
Parents with perspective kindergarteners have many concerns as their child embarks on his first year of formal schooling. In the stress and rigor of modern education, parents often wonder if their child is prepared for kindergarten.
What determines School Readiness for an up and coming student?
An earlier generation defined school readiness as whether or not a child is five years old. In recent years, however, states have been working to develop a definition of School Readiness based on the fundamental skills and concepts children will need when they first enter school. “It is generally accepted that school readiness is a measure of a child’s expected success in kindergarten, based on his or her early childhood education, experiences, and development.” (Texas Early Learning Council, 2011).
Depending upon where a family lives and the culture of that community, school expectations may vary greatly for kindergarteners. Regardless of these differences, studies demonstrate that many parents tend to focus on academic expectations, whereas, most kindergarten teachers focus on positive social and emotional skills (McManis, 2015). Teachers know social skills are foundational because they know it is impossible to add to a child’s learning, if he cannot demonstrate enough self-control to refrain from certain behaviors during learning times.
What is needed to prepare my child for kindergarten?
If a parent’s future goals for her child involve the completion of high school and the possibility of college, then preparation for kindergarten begins at birth and continues through the early years with activities such as reading to the child, introducing mathematical concepts, and building social skills (McManis, 2015; Wesley & Buysee, 2003).
Stepping Stone School works with children and their families by providing a heavy focus on hands-on learning through play and the development of social skills including cooperation, communication, self-regulation, and self-help skills. Additionally, Stepping Stone School builds vocabulary skills, early literacy skills, and early mathematical skills beginning in our infant classrooms and continuing through our Advanced Pre-Kindergarten classes.
Consistent with research, Stepping Stone School prepares children for kindergarten by focusing on the development of the whole child through age appropriate activities which work on social/emotional, language, and physical development as well as academic or cognitive development.
McManis, L. (2015). “School Readiness: Preparing Families.” Hatch Early Learning and Early Childhood Research Solutions. Retrieved on April 25, 2016 from http://pages.hatchearlylearning.com/rs/980-GBD-747/images/School-Readiness-Preparing-Families-Presentation-Slides.pdf
Texas Early Learning Council (2011, Sept.). “Defining School readiness: National Trends in School readiness Definitions.” Retrieved on April 25, 2016 from http://earlylearningtexas.org/media/10138/trends%20in%20school%20readiness%20final%2011-1.pdf