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Kindergarten Readiness

According to local kindergarten teachers, 1 in 7 Quad Cities children were not ready to learn on their first day of school.

10 Things Your Child Needs to Know Before Kindergarten

A group of Quad Cities kindergarten teachers put together this list. Is your child ready for kindergarten?

1. Does your child have patience?

  • Play freeze tag.
  • Give a small treat to the child who can sit still the longest.
  • Teach your child how to walk up to pets.

2. Does your child share with others?

  • Play board or card games.
  • Get two different ice cream cones, and then ask to trade a bite for a bite.
  • Color in a picture together using only two or three crayons.

3. Can your child talk about thoughts and feelings?

  • When your child is upset, sit in a chair snuggling with him or her. Ask how he or she feels and listen to the answer.
  • When watching TV together, ask questions likes: Why do you think the little girl is crying?
  • At bedtime, have your child list three things that happened that day the made him or her happy.

4. Can your child get dressed, put on a coat, and use a bathroom, without help?

  • Play dress-up together.
  • Pull a zipper off an old pair of pants and have the children practice with it.
  • Let your child get dressed and undressed by him or herself - as much as he or she can do without help.

5. Does your child do well in new situations?

  • Try new places such as: parks and playgrounds, farmers' markets, window shopping at the mall, and pet stores.

6. Does your child play in groups?

  • Have a three-legged race.
  • Get two children to hold a towel between them and then get them to bounce a ball in the middle.
  • Play pretend with your child. Today, I am a lion. What are you?

7. Can your child hold a pencil and use scissors?

  • Get a pair of child's safety scissors.
  • If they have trouble cutting paper at first, give them clay or play dough to cut.
  • Color a picture together.
  • Play Tic-Tac-Toe.

8. Can your child figure out ways to solve problems?

  • Play I Spy or Hot & Cold.
  • Give your child an empty cereal box and ask him or her to make it flat.
  • Twist two pipe cleaners together in a knot and work with your child to untangle them.

9. Does your child explore the world and ask questions?

  • Ask questions yourself. What color and shape is that sign? Why do cars have wheels?
  • Halfway through a book, ask your child what he or she thinks is going to happen next.
  • When your child asks a question you don't know the answer to, look up the answer together.

10. Does your child like to listen to stories?

  • Sign your child up for Imagination Library.
  • Read to your child, every day, starting from birth.

Download the Kindergarten Skills Inventory brochure.

Printable poster for 11×17 paper.