Preschoolers need to have consistency between home and school. Right now, with many quarantined within their homes, not able to leave and attend class, these students must continue to do this work at home. Many preschoolers will be registering for Kindergarten in the coming weeks.
As an ECE professional who teaches preschoolers, I already worry about those who leave me in may, graduate preschool, but don't start Kindergarten until the fall. The summer slide is real. I don't want that even earlier in the year for my students.
Here are some of the things preschoolers are working on at school to help prepare them for Kindergarten(and the rest of their lives);
Counting- Once they master 0-10, start working up by tens. When they learn 0-100, start working on skip counting, meaning counting by 2's, 5's, and 10's to 100.
Sorting by color, shape, and size
Identifying their letters (not in order), once they master upper and lower cases, work on letter sounds. When they have learned this begin working on High-Frequency Sight Words
They need to be read to every day, several times a day, throughout the day. Don't just read and be done. They need to talk about the parts of the book and what happened in the book, extend their learning through questions about the book.
Shapes- Not just what we would consider basic shapes; they should know, circle, heart, star, square, rhombus, trapezoid, octagon, hexagon, pentagon, oval, rectangle, semi-circle, triangle, and crescent
Big body play, gross motor skills, fine motor skills
Preschools also need to begin learning independence when it comes to life skills. Dressing one's self, cleaning up after themselves, brushing their teeth, getting there own snack, and peeling or opening it. It's time to STOP doing EVERYTHING for them and encouraging them to do it on their own. Show them and then let them take over. How will they learn if everything is done for them? If you don't, we end up with kids who believe everything should be done for them. Kids who think they can't.
And most important of all, FREE PLAY! Kids need to run around, use their imaginations, and be given a chance to make their own choices. It's OK to play; they NEED to play. They need to learn to occupy themselves and play alone. There is value in playing with others but also in being able to be alone. They need that skill of self conversation. Quiet time for their minds, so that they can be creative.
Abby Lazarus, M.Ed.
Preschool Owner/Teacher. Bachelors in Child Development. Masters in Early Childhood Studies. Current ECE Doctoral student, with over 15 years in the ECE field.