It can be an exciting and emotional time for children and their parents when a child officially begins their school career with kindergarten. However, is that child ready? And, how do parents prepare their child to be ready? The Illinois Early Learning Project has a great tip sheet on this topic that I would like to share.
What are the health requirements for a child to begin school in Illinois?
- A physical exam by a health care provider. The provider should give you a signed form to take to school.
- A dental exam performed by a licensed dentist.
- An eye exam performed by an optometrist or medical doctor.
- All required immunizations. Start early so your child is ready for that ﬁrst day. Talk to your health care provider or call the Illinois Public Health Department at 217-782-4977 if you’re not sure what immunizations he needs.
What will the teacher expect my child to be able to do?
- Hold and use a pencil, crayons and scissors.
- Say their full name and how they get to and from school.
- Handle self-care tasks such as hanging up their coat, going to the toilet, and washing their hands.
- Get along with most children and adults and respect the property and rights of others.
- Work alone and with others.
- Sit and listen for about 15 minutes.
- Remember and carry out two or three directions; ﬁnish a task they start.
- Follow simple rules and be willing to take turns.
What are some ways I can help prepare my child?
- Help them learn about the surrounding world. Take them on interesting trips—to the library or grocery store, on a bus ride, or to a museum or park—and talk with them about what they sees. Encourage their curiosity and help them ﬁnd answers to their questions.
- Read to them and let them know that words can be written as well as spoken.
- Teach them the names of colors and shapes.
- Help them see and hear how objects and sounds may be alike or different.
You have free articles remaining.
How can I ﬁnd out what my local school expects of my child?
- Take advantage of any kindergarten screening or school visits your school may offer.
- Call the school ofﬁce and ask for information on what is expected of children and parents.
What if my child needs special help to be ready for kindergarten?
- Check with your local school district ofﬁce to ﬁnd out about developmental screening and programs.
- Call 800-851-6197 or visit www.childﬁnd-idea-il.us to learn more about services for children who have special needs.
Source: Illinois Early Learning Project, https://illinoisearlylearning.org/tipsheets/readykindergarten/
For more information on this topic or other family life-related topics, contact Cheri Burcham at University of Illinois Extension at 217-543-3755 or at email@example.com. For more information on University of Illinois Unit 19 programming and to read additional helpful articles, visit our website at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/ccdms/index.html or call us at 217-345-7034. Also visit the Family Files Blog at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/hkmw/eb380/.