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21 Tips to Prepare Kids for Kindergarten During Covid
Starting kindergarten is usually an exciting milestone. Typically, it’s packed full of first day pictures with the entire family, parents coming into the classroom to give hugs and unpack supplies, and all-hands-on-deck from staff members throughout the school day.
This year, sadly, things will look much different in many classrooms across the country. With the Coronavirus affecting so many school districts, many of us parents and teachers are still in a state of the unknown. We do not have answers, nor do we know what a typical school week will look like.
There are, however, many school districts that made the decision to return to the classroom with many restrictions and social distancing put into place. With that in mind, there are several ways you can help your kids prepare for kindergarten during covid.
Practicing Self-Help Skills in Kindergarten
As I’m writing this, I can’t help but shake my head in disbelief. I cannot believe kindergarten kids are going to be expected to social distance. I cannot believe kindergarten teachers are going to be expected to be hands-off, wearing masks, and so on. It breaks my heart! But, with that being said, we have to keep moving forward and do what’s best for the kids.
The best thing we can do as parents is to teach our kids as many self-help skills as possible. If you’re a teacher, the best thing you can do it share this post with your families to help them prepare.
Self-help skills you can start doing now to prepare kids for kindergarten during Covid-19:
- Zip/unzip their own coats
- Button/unbutton their own pants when using the restroom
- Use the restroom independently (wiping, flushing)
- Wash hands thoroughly
- Tie, velcro, fasten shoes independently
- Open and close their own lunch box and food containers (including baggies, yogurts, chip bags, etc)
- Making sure they know not to eat off of, or set food directly on, the tables.
- Put a straw in their own juice box
- Fill and close their own water bottles
- How to properly drink from a drinking fountain
- Practice eating lunch within a 15-20 minute time frame (set a timer)
- How to turn on/off a tablet or ipad and navigate apps
- Using tissues to blow their nose
- Cleaning up after themselves
- Taking turns
- Waiting patiently in line without putting hands on others.
- How to hold scissors
- Open and close glue bottles and glue sticks
- Identify and find their name
- Open and close a bookbag
- How to put on and take off masks
This list has been collectively put together from fellow kindergarten teachers. We know this is a lot to take in, but we want to take all measures possible to keep the kids healthy. The more you practice with your kids now, the smoother transition they will have when starting kindergarten.
Depending on your state’s suggested practices, children may be required to wear a mask at school. If this is the case, please make sure they know how to put on and take off their own masks, to never share a mask with friends, and to keep their mask in a safe place when it’s removed.
Clearly there are a lot of ways to help prepare kids for kindergarten. While there are a lot of educational skills, such as practice name writing, that you can do before starting kindergarten, these tips are to help them prepare for social distancing and restrictions at school.
If you are a kindergarten teacher, and you’d like to send this list to parents, or share a pdf in a welcome email, grab the free pdf printable below!
Before you go, here are a few blog posts you may enjoy: