Sending your child off to kindergarten for the first day is probably one of the toughest things you will ever do as a parent. It is kind of like cutting off an arm watching them climb up on that bus and go away to kindergarten. Up to now, you have likely spent day and night with them and grown quite accustomed to their being right by your side. Kindergarten is a new and exciting experience for parent and child, but it does take some getting used to. Here are some changes you can expect when your child heads off to school for the first time:
As mentioned above, it is tough to see your little one head off to class. Both you and they will likely experience strong emotions that are perfectly normal. Don’t worry, however. You will reach a point where it is perfectly okay for your little one to head off to school. You might even look forward to it on some days. (Did I say that out loud?)
A Strong Focus on Letters
Kindergarten is a bit more advanced than in years past. Your child will begin to learn all about letters and how they are shaped. They will also explore how they form words and the sounds they make when put together. Kids are really getting into things now that we learned in first and second grade. Help them out and join in! You will be surprised at how much they know.
The focus in kindergarten where math is concerned is still number familiarity but it is also about mathematical reasoning. The kids will learn to count by using objects and will learn to write their numbers. Basic adding and subtracting will be introduced and they also will spend a ton of time on extra easy word problems involving numbers.
Oh, Those Wonderful Crafts
Just like when you were a child, crafts still make up a huge part of the school day in kindergarten. Some schools have more resources, but they all try to incorporate the arts. Pottery, paper mache, drawing, growing seeds in cups and all the others you remember are still going on. Try to share as much of this with your child as possible and you will get to relive them all over again!
Story Time and Naps
Yep they are still going on. I am thinking they probably still have the plastic mats we all knew and loved too.
A Social Explosion
Once your child goes to kindergarten, their social lives begin to really blossom. They will make new friends, become much more independant and even try to challenge you on some things. This is a very hard time for the parent. They want their child to grow and stretch their wings, so to speak, but not so much on the attitude that can come with it. Finding that right balance between the two is a key factor in their growth and social development.