This blog is here for you to find fun learning activities to do with your children. We share great ideas we find and love on the Internet, as well as ideas we come up with on our own! We also like to share resources we find helpful.

To find ideas for your child, click on the age range blog label or on the theme/topic you are looking for (on the left side of the page). In each post, we try to list optimal age ranges for the activity, but you must judge for yourself if it is appropriate for your child. When you try an activity out, please comment and let us (and everyone else) know how your child liked it!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Kindergarten: Start Off Right

That first day of school can be scary--for mom and child! I have compiled some tips for starting this adventure right.

Here are some tips from the Utah State Office of Education for a successful beginning for Kindergarten.
  • Go to orientation. If your school doesn't have an orientation, see if you can make an appointment to visit the school and meet the teacher before the first day of school.
  • Talk about fun. Talk about the fun things your child will get to do at school, including, story time, making new friends, and recess.
  • Good Routine. Make sure you have a good routine of 10-12 hours of sleep at night and eating a healthy breakfast in the morning.
  • Ask and Tell. Teach your child the after-school plan. Does he ride a bus home? Do you pick him up? Will you carpool? Tell him exactly where to go and what to do. Once you have explained it all, have him explain it to you.
  • Label. Label all outerwear.
  • Independenct Dresser. Have your child wear clothes that can be put on and taken off independently. You know what your child can and can't handle alone. Have him wear shoes, pants, and jackets that he can handle on his own.
  • Appropriate Clothing. Make sure clothing is appropriate for sitting on carpets and playing outside.
  • Reassurance Item. You can pack an item to send with your child to remind him of home. A favorite stuffed animal, a family picture, or a note are some examples.
  • Keep It Simple. Don't overschedule time after school. Your child will likely be tired.
  • Check the Backpack. There might be forms you need to fill out in the backpack.
  • Celebrate. Celebrate the end of the first day--but remember your child might be tired :)
  • Routine. Have a routine for after school. This might include a snack, playtime, and some quiet time with a book.
  • Ask Questions. Ask your child about his day. Who did you play with? What did you do today? What stories did you read? What did you play with? What did you make? As your child answers these questions, you can ask follow up questions.
From Kaboose.com
  • Independence. Make sure your child can use the restroom independently as well as put his coat and shoes on indpendently.
  • Talk About Books. As you read books to your child, talk about it. What was his favorite part? What did he like when xyz? I think this sounds like a  good way to get your child used to answering questions about what happened.
  • Get Supplies. Go together to get supplies needed for the school year. I remember last year, Brayden and I went shopping and bought a couple of shirts for his new year of preschool. I remember doing that with my mom and it was a fun tradition for us.
From PBS.org
  • Talk About It. The night before, talk about what will happen and review all plans (like where to meet). Let your child talk about how he is feeling about this new adventure.
  • Get Up Early. Make sure everyone who needs to be up is up with enough time to have a relaxing morning getting ready.
  • Don't Be Anxious. Your child doesn't need to worry about you being worried and missing him. Keep your worries and sadness to yourself.
  • Read Books. Read books about going to school.
From Me:
  • Ask Around. Ask other moms who have been there their tips on how to start of right. It would be especially helpful to ask moms who have had children start in the same school your children will start in.

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