Transitioning to school is easier for some kids than it is for others. In fact, a significant number of children experience difficulties and anxiety when it’s time to start attending school. This is where the importance of ensuring your child’s school-readiness comes into play.
“School-readiness” refers to how prepared your child is for the transition to school. School-readiness encompasses children’s academic skills, language development, social adjustment, physical development, and emotional intelligence. As a parent, you play a vital role in helping ensure that your child is ready for school. By working together as a family, you can give your child a head start toward success.
Below are a few ways you can help your child become more school-ready:
Enrich language development
Language skill development is something parents can help children acquire as early as infancy. In fact, the best school-readiness tool for infants is their parents talking to them! The more we talk to babies and expose them to new words, the stronger their language skills will be when they start school.
You can enhance children’s language development skills by asking them questions and encouraging them to respond. You can also incorporate educational toys so help your child learn new things while having fun at home.
Strengthen self-regulation skills using games and activities
Self-regulation is the ability to control one’s emotions and behavior. Being school-ready also involves children’s ability to control impulses, delay gratification, regulate their emotions, and focus on school work. To help strengthen your child’s self-regulation skills, you can do simple things at home, such as playing memory games or watching educational videos together. These games and activities will not only boost school performance, but will also help you reduce screen time while providing healthier alternatives for family activities.
Boost concentration through visual activities
School-readiness skills also include the ability to pay attention and concentrate for extended periods of time. To help improve your child’s focus, you can utilize visual activities such as reading storybooks or looking at picture books. It is also important to limit the use of screens at home, including television or tablets, as they are proven to be detrimental to school-readiness.
Foster emotional intelligence
Emotional intelligence is a skill for school-readiness and for life. One’s emotional intelligence is a key factor in determining whether or not a child can easily adapt to the school environment. An emotionally intelligent child is capable of identifying his or her emotions and how to handle them. Children with higher emotional intelligence are better able to handle difficult emotion-provoking situations.
To help foster children’s emotional intelligence, help them identify and recognize their own emotions, as well as others’ emotions. You can also help them find appropriate ways to express strong feelings, such as anger. The more skilled children are at handling their emotions, the better adjusted they’ll be for social interactions at school.
Encourage play-based learning
During the school years, your child will be spending many hours at school. For this reason, it’s important to prepare your child for school by encouraging play-based learning as early as possible (even as early as infancy). You can do this by playing with children using educational toys. You can also play school-related games, like teaching the alphabet by singing songs or making flashcards together.
Practice fine motor skills
You can also improve children’s school-readiness by helping them practice developing their fine motor skills through activities that are focused on this area. For instance, encourage kids to play with puzzles or draw using crayons, markers, or colored pencils at home during free time. This will not only help when it comes to school performance, but it will also enhance hand-eye coordination and develop their concentration skills in the long run.
Establish consistent routines at home
Following a consistent routine at home is another excellent way to prepare your child for a typical school day. Set times for meals, sleeping, homework, and playing. Help your child acclimate to following a schedule for daily activities, as this helps children get used to adhering to a school schedule when the first day arrives.
It’s never too early to get your child ready for the transition to school. Follow these school-readiness tips to help children transition as they approach this new journey, and increase their chances of success in school and beyond.
If you’re searching for a safe place to send your child each day, one that ensures that your little one will learn and enjoy each day spent in daycare, look no further! Our program here at Wee Care Preschool is designed to ensure that all children’s educational and emotional needs are met each day. Contact us today for more information!