What Does My Child Need to Know Before Kindergarten?

Kindergarten is a new and exciting world for our little ones! There is so much to learn– like how to make new friends and how to walk in line in the hall, on top of all the academic learning! At Bright Scholars, we want to team up with our parents to send children off to their first day of school as prepared as possible. Children who begin kindergarten with a solid foundation of academic and social skills may have an easier time adjusting. Many parents ask “what does my child need to know or be able to do before starting kindergarten?”, so we want to help address that. Keep in mind that most of these are simply recommendations and not requirements! This is more of a list to help parents know what to work on at home, instead of something to stress out about. The main thing for parents to remember is that your children don’t have to know everything yet, but knowing these 10 things can help them as they prepare to enter kindergarten this Fall. 

Our preschool and Voluntary Pre-K programs at Bright Scholars Academy in St. Cloud, FL are designed to help your children learn important academic and social skills.

Foundational Skills for Upcoming Kindergarten Students:

  1. Write Their Name
    Ideally, the children can write their first names from left to right with a capital first letter and the rest lower case. At a minimum, they need to be able to write some form of their first name.
  2. Identify Some Letters And Their Sounds
    They should know most of their letters of the alphabet. It’s helpful if they also know that letters make sounds, but it’s ok if they don’t know what each one is yet.
  3. Count To 10
    Kindergartners should be able to count all the way from 1 to 10 and also be able to count a set of objects.
  4. Handle A Book (but not necessarily read)
    They should be able to hold the book in the right direction, turn the pages, and locate the text. The best way to achieve this skill is to read, read, and read some more with your child!
  5. Dress Themselves
    Kindergartners need to be able to put on their own coats and shoes, with a few exceptions, of course. If your child hasn’t mastered shoe tying at the beginning of the year, try to send him or her to school in shoes that he or she can do themselves. Keep practicing at home and they will get there!
  6. Able to Use the Bathroom Independently
    Their teachers are likely not going to be able to accompany each student to the bathroom. The students need to be able to handle their clothing, wiping themselves, and washing their own hands. This one’s important!
  7. Use School Supplies (Scissors, Glue. and Crayons)
    These skills will be utilized frequently in kindergarten. The children who already know how to use their school supplies at the beginning of the year may find it easier to jump right into schoolwork.
  8. Verbalize Their Wants And Needs
    Children who know how to greet others, who ask their teachers for what they need, and who speak up for themselves will do well socially in kindergarten.
  9. Separate From Their Parents
    Separation anxiety is very common among young children, especially in a new environment like school. This one may be harder to overcome for some, while others may have children who don’t even give a backward glance as they head into the classroom. Enrolling your child in child care or preschool may help your child work through their separation anxiety before starting kindergarten. 

Don’t panic if your child hasn’t nailed everything on the list- kids will learn, and continue to learn, much of this in kindergarten. The main points are to work with your child on basic skills and to essentially wean them from relying on you to do things they could do themselves- like zipping up a jacket. Give your child the chance to show you what they can do! We bet you’ll be in for a few surprises! And remember, have fun playing and learning with your children!

If you’re wanting your child to hone their skills, manners, and abilities as a way to prepare them for kindergarten, we recommend either our preschool or VPK programs. They’re complete with STEAM learning activities, independent exploration, and more at our Bright Scholars campus in St. Cloud, FL. To reserve your child’s spot at Bright Scholars Academy today, complete our quick pre-registration form and a member of our team will contact you to discuss your enrollment needs.