Kindergarten registration is currently happening across the state. Arizona schools are able to enroll students into kindergarten who will be 5 years of age by Aug. 31.
Parents play a very important part in preparing their child for kindergarten. Determining if your child is ready for kindergarten requires more than just the consideration of the child’s age, but also an honest assessment of their ability to perform successfully in the school environment. As your child’s first and most influential teacher, it is important for you to be knowledgeable about the kindergarten experience so that you can ensure your child has a successful start to school. The curriculum in kindergarten classrooms today is much more academic and rigorous than our historical expectations have been.
As parents, it is important to have an idea of skills and abilities that students need in order to be successful in the classroom. Below are some areas that research has shown to be strong indicators of school readiness, and include things that you can practice together at home.
Kindergarten Readiness Skills and Abilities
Pre-reading: This includes having alphabet letter knowledge (both sound and symbol recognition), print awareness, writing, and an interest in and appreciation of books, reading, and writing.
Language skills: Receptive and expressive vocabulary skills are important, this includes the ability to answer questions and use age appropriate conversational skills.
Pre-mathematics: This includes the ability to name and draw basic shapes, and demonstrate an understanding of basic numbers sense, counting, and patterning.
Social and emotional abilities: This includes being able to relate to teachers and peers in positive ways, and the ability to manage feelings in age-appropriate ways.
Self-management skills: An ability to use the restroom independently, feed and dress themselves independently, and follow verbal directions fairly consistently.
Physical abilities: An ability to sit and listen for 10 minutes, use scissors, use pencil/crayons/markers, walk, run, and climb stairs.
Currently, Higley is enrolling students for next school year. In addition to our neighborhood schools we also offer a Traditional Academy, and Coronado Elementary School will offer a Mandarin Immersion program. Please visit our website and our schools to learn more.
• Dr. Dawn Foley is director of curriculum and instruction at Higley Unified School District.