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Preparing for Kindergarten

I took time off from work the other day for a very important occasion with my 5 year old son: a chance to meet his new Kindergarten teacher and classmates, and preview his new classroom!

As he met his teacher, made shy “hellos” and “high fives” to the other kids in his class, and looked around, I couldn’t help but think about what he would learn this year, what his big “wins” and big “challenges” would be, and whether we had prepared him well enough.

In one corner of the room there is a cozy reading area, with shelves of books and soft big pillows on the floor. Yes, he would like that. We had always cuddled with him on our laps and read stories and adventures and dinosaur books, and today he has a great love of books (though still a non-reader). What might he be able to read by the end of the year?

In another area was a magnet board with baskets of letters, numbers and pictures of food. My son immediately created a feast for a king on that board, organized by …um, his own system.

Having Confidence in Math Skills is a Great Head Start

Taped on the back wall was a set of pictures showing the different ways to “make 10” – add 1 to 9, or 2 to 8, etc. and next to it was a shelf full of math manipulatives. Being an early beta tester of DreamBox, he nodded with familiarity at the wall, and picked up a mathrack with confidence. Hooray! I thought. The overlap of my work life and home life had helped give him an early love of math and a good head start. (That certainly wouldn’t have been true if I had stayed in my previous jobs in network security or medical information systems!).
Kindergarten Math Rack

And then he ran out to the playground, and was quickly playing loudly with the other kids, glancing my way only occasionally to make sure I was still watching.

Yes, he is prepared enough for Kindergarten, ready to start an amazing educational journey that will include academic, social and artistic adventures.