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What Your Child Is Expected to Know before Entering Kindergarten

You want your child to be fully prepared for entering kindergarten.  What kinds of things should your child know before entering kindergarten?

Language Skills

Your child should be able to speak clearly and in full sentences. 

Your child should be able to recite the alphabet and recognize each letter by sight.  Your child should be able to print many if not all of the letters of the alphabet.

Your child should be able to write his/her own name, address, and telephone number.

Your child should have a good vocabulary.

Your child should be able to understand and follow simple commands and communicate his/her thoughts and feelings adequately.

Numerical Skills

Your child should be able to count to 10 and recognize each number by sight.  Your child should be able to print many if not all of these numbers.

Your child should be able to recognize basic shapes by sight and call them by their proper names (i.e., square, circle, rectangle, triangle, etc.).

Labeling Skills

Your child should know the names for the main parts of his/her body (i.e., arm, leg, tummy, etc.).

Your child should know the names of various common kinds of animals (i.e., horse, dog, mouse, etc.)

Your child should know the names of many colors (i.e., red, blue, green, etc.).

Your child should know the names of the days of the week (i.e., Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, etc.).

Autonomy Skills

Your child should be able to take on and off his/her coat, mittens, and hat.

Your child should be able to tie his/her own shoes.

Your child should be able to feed him-/herself.

Your child should be able to go to the bathroom without assistance.

Interpersonal Skills

Your child should know the rules for appropriate conduct with others (i.e., sharing is good, biting is unacceptable, etc.).

Your child should know basic safety rules (i.e., no running with scissors).

Your child should know the names and relationships of everyone in your household (i.e., “My mommy’s name is Phyllis Smith.  My daddy’s name is Phillip Smith.  I have one brother; his name is Paul Smith.”).

These are but a few examples of the knowledge your child will be expected to have before entering kindergarten.  You may wish to speak with your child’s prospective elementary school to obtain their specific expectations.

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