Caring for a child means providing more than food and shelter, it also means helping the child develop and gain an education. Many parents rely on public school systems to teach their children, but there are some important concepts kids can master before they ever step foot in the classroom.
Here are three simple things that your toddler needs to know before kindergarten to ensure that he or she will have every opportunity to excel academically in the future:
1. How to utilize gross motor skills.
Many of the tasks performed in the classroom require children to have finely-honed motor skills. Holding a pencil, drawing a picture, and even using flash cards are all tasks that require a child to use his or her motor skills.
While your toddler might not be ready to master proper pencil positioning, he or she can begin to master gross motor movements in preparation for fine tuning in the future. Be sure that your toddler has the opportunity to fit blocks into holes, move beads along a wire, and engage in other tasks that require the use of gross motor skills.
2. How to practice self-control.
Classrooms represent a structured environment. Children are not able to do whatever they want, they need to adhere to a schedule prepared by their instructors. You can begin to prepare your toddler for the rigors of a school schedule by teaching him or her self-control.
Allow your child to practice being patient by serving snacks only at certain times throughout the day. You can also help your toddler learn to adhere to a schedule by setting time limits on the use of certain toys. Using these types of tasks to teach your toddler self-control will help him or her better cope with the demands of a classroom setting in the future.
3. How to interact appropriately with peers.
If your toddler has siblings, finding opportunities to interact with peers can be easy. If your toddler is an only child, you will need to be more proactive in finding a playgroup your toddler can participate in.
Interacting with peers starting at a young age helps to prepare children for the social demands of school. Through constructive interaction, your child will be able to learn conflict resolution and sharing skills that will easily transition to a school setting.
Preparing your toddler for kindergarten properly is important if you want to maximize his or her learning opportunities. Be sure that you are teaching your toddler mastery over gross motor skills, self-control, and appropriate peer interaction techniques to prepare him or her to successfully tackle kindergarten in the future.
Contact a company like The Cottage School for more information and assistance.