You should think of your child’s time in kindergarten as a team effort. What you do at home can be just as important as what the kindergarten teachers and aides do at the school. Your efforts can have an enormous effect on how well your child does in school, and how well they do beyond kindergarten.
You can help your child thrive in kindergarten by reinforcing the things they learn in school at home.
In Kindergarten, Children Learn Routine
At school, your child is expected to do certain things at certain times. You can reinforce the habit they learn in kindergarten by establishing routines for them at home. Have each meal at the same time every day. Give them a specific bedtime and stick to it, even on weekends. If they have any homework, insist it be done before play or television time. Establish when and how long they can watch television. Setting consistent routines will not only help your child in kindergarten, it will help them develop good habits later on.
In Kindergarten, Children Learn Responsibility
Just as establishing routines will help your child develop good habits, giving them responsibilities will do the same. The easiest way to do this is to give the child some simple chores around the house. Things like putting away their toys, helping you fold the laundry, and helping to clear the table after meals. Completing these tasks will give them a sense of accomplishment. It will also make them eager to take on responsibilities in the kindergarten classroom.
In Kindergarten, Children Learn Independence
The hours they spend in the kindergarten classroom each day shouldn’t be the only times your child is away from you. Get your child used to being away from you at other times, too. Knowing they will be fine even when their family isn’t around can help build their self-confidence. Schedule play dates, where they’ll go over to a friend’s house to play for a few hours. Sign them up for after-school or weekend activities, like sports or classes.
Another way to help your child feel independent is to let them do things for themselves. Pick out their clothes, but let them dress on their own. And, when you’re shopping, let them choose a shirt they like, the backpack they prefer, even the type of toothpaste or vitamins they want.
In Kindergarten, Children Are Taught That Learning Is Fun
In kindergarten, children are taught that activities like reading and writing are important and enjoyable. Reinforce that message at home. Something as simple as your child seeing you reading a novel or writing in a journal can work wonders.
Your child’s first year of school can be challenging. But following these tips at home will help your child get the most out of their time spent in kindergarten.