Kindergarten should provide a fun and safe environment for kids to learn and discovery. While some of us have been through the experience, and have foudnd that it was not all that it was cracked up to be, others find it a difficult venture. One of the main reasons that Kindergarten can be such a struggle is that the environment is set by the parents. No one really wants to sit in the same classroom year after year, hearing the same stories, and performing the same activities. As a parent, you can help your child make this transition smooth, but only if you are willing to step out of your comfort zone a bit and try new teaching strategies and techniques.
For many parents, setting Kindergarten Expectations is much like defining Christmas day. It’s either going to be a wonderful day, or a miserable day. Most people believe that the best way to ensure a positive outcome is to compare the curriculum to the expectations that they already have. Unfortunately, the data shows that public school teachers don’t measure up when it comes to developing solid literacy skills. In fact, many teachers fall far behind in basic literacy development of their students.
By setting realistic expectations early on, parents can avoid these pitfalls, as well as any unrealistic goals that they might have for their child. One of the first steps that any good parent will take is to become educated about the development of a child’s cognitive, linguistic, emotional, social, and physical skills. This includes their ability to interact with classmates and learn to respect each other. By taking the time to get educated, parents can develop a plan for their kindergarten children that meets their current level of skill development, while setting higher standards for themselves.
There are a wide variety of resources available that can help parents formulate realistic Kindergarten expectations for their child. The National Common Sense Education Program (NCSEP) provides helpful information on how teachers should relate to their students, what types of activities they should include to make lessons fun and interesting, and how they should modify lessons to suit the interests and abilities of their students. Other helpful sites on the NCSEP website include Kindergarten Subplots for Homeschoolers and A Look at Preschool Graduation Standards. These quality sites provide valuable insights that can guide parents through the process of evaluating various Kindergarten Expectations for their child.
While most people are confident that they know what a kindergarten teacher should not be teaching, some teachers surprise many parents with the depth of their knowledge and understanding of the subject matter. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t capable of teaching, but it does mean that they probably have a lot of information that they aren’t sharing with you! It is important for parents to find a Kindergarten teacher they can connect with on a personal level. Most importantly, a Kindergarten teacher must demonstrate an ability to teach Kindergarten, both in a fun way that children will enjoy and in a manner that allows them to obtain all of the necessary skills for success in kindergarten.
While every child learns various skills at different ages, many Kindergarten Expectations can be applied to younger children. A Kindergarten Expectation is basically a guideline for helping parents and children understand the different skill sets that will be taught in Kindergarten. These skill sets include phonics, reading, writing, and the basic mathematical skills that are required for learning to count, identify numbers, understand the concept of sums and ratio, and other fundamental preschool concepts. Once these core concepts have been developed, there will be additional opportunities to reinforce these skills in various ways throughout the years as the child enters preschool and begins to interact with other children and teachers on a daily basis.
Another way that Kindergarten Expectations can be defined is by reflecting on the social and emotional development that all children must experience during the early childhood years. This type of development is critical to preparing young children for kindergarten, and should be the basis for any Kindergarten Expectations that parents have regarding the social and emotional skills that their child should be developing at this young age. For example, it has been established that by the age of nine or ten years old, children are able to establish relationships with others and can respond appropriately to social situations.
The early childhood development that all children experience is directly related to the ability to make sound and wise choices. Therefore, any Kindergarten Expectations that entails taking a responsible role as parents and teaching young children the importance of taking responsible actions are necessary for their early childhood development. These Kindergarten Expectations can be found in most preschools and is based upon sound scientific research that the effects of neglect and inadequate care can have on young children. These effects can be very damaging and cause negative behaviors and feelings towards others and ultimately on the entire family.