Preparing For A Preschooler

Just last week Olive and I were invited to the IMPACT Early Childhood Fair. The theme was Down on the Farm, which I thought was really cute and perfect because Olive has been big on farm animals lately. It was a free event to give parents ideas on ways to help your child develop the skills needed in preparation for school. With Olive starting Junior Kindergarten (Pre-K) in the fall, I was thrilled to find out this event was going on for kids born in 2013. My only fear in going was that Olive would say “Thank you my nuts.” I have no idea where she got that line and has yet to say it in public but she repeatedly says it at home lately especially when she is over tired and trying to be funny. Luckily she didn’t! Dodged that bullet, for now! There was 10 interactive stations to check-out. We met up with some good friends of ours, Lynette and Oaklyn. Olive and Oaklyn enjoyed doing all the stations together. The event was definitely geared for parent-child interaction but with Olive having her friend there she could have cared less about my involvement.  I get to do these types of activities with her all day everyday so I was more then okay taking a back seat and watching her do the activities with her friend. It was so sweet to watch her get creative within the activities and add her own little spin to each station. I’m always looking for new ways to teach Olive the basics while keeping things light, fun and creative. We received a great pamphlet listing ways us parents can help our preschoolers. I’ll share them with you.

Physical Health & Well Being

You can help your preschooler to:

  •  Learn to get dressed and use the bathroom without help
  • Get a good night’s sleep
  • Eat healthy food
  • Be active
  • Develop large muscles by running, hopping, jumping , throwing and balancing
  • Develop small muscles by using scissors, picking up small objects, putting puzzle pieces together, holding crayons or pencils

Communication Skills & General Knowledge

You can help your preschooler to:

  • Showing them that it is exciting to learn new things
  • Giving 2-step instructions – “Please take off your coat and hang it up”
  • Letting them ask lots of questions
  • Listening without interrupting
  • Encouraging them to play with many different toys and materials
  • Solving problems together

Language & Cognitive Development

You can help your preschooler to:

  • Taking turns talking and listening to each other
  • Telling stories or reading together out loud everyday
  • Playing with them… Play is children’s work and you are their favorite toy! Play is how children learn about the world. Play builds children’s brains and helps them remember what they are learning.

Social and Emotional Development

You can help your preschooler to:

  • Play and get along with others
  • Share and take turns
  • Be a gracious winner or loser
  • Be comfortable away from you
  • Empathize with other people’s feelings
  •  Learn to deal with powerful feelings
  • Feel good about themselves!

Definitely need to help Olive brush up on some of those. And who am I kidding, I think I even need to brush up on some of those myself! The kids also received an item at each station which helped them make up an amazing gift bag they ended up taking home. We love the books and the puzzle the most! Although September seems so far away, if your child is coming up to school age, now is the time to start asking your questions, registering your kids and looking into your communities for events like these. Or if your have a year or two to go before your little ones are there it never hurts to start aiming for some of these things in your child's development with some play-based learning. I can not believe Olive is already going to be going to school. Seems like just the other day she was my chubby little baby. We will definitely be applying some of the types of activities we learned at home. What are some of the ways you're preparing your kids for school? Do you feel ready? I just also wanted to say thank you to all of our community sponsors that made this event possible! Olive had a blast!