Monica is the mother of three children who are all in their twenties. She holds an associates degree in Early Childhood Education and has been working in the education field for over thirty years. Currently, she is a Special Education Assistant at Renwood Elementary in Parma, Ohio.
Prior to her work at Renwood Elementary, Monica was a preschool teacher and administrator. She has also taught Mommy and Me classes and was a toddler teacher for the daycare at Cuyahoga Community College. One of the things she loves most about working in the education field is being able to be a part of a child’s learning and then seeing them develop the skills that she taught them. She finds it rewarding when parents and past students reach out to her years later to tell her how much their time at the preschool got them off to a great start in their school experience.

Here are five tips that will help get your children ready for kindergarten.

Socialization This is important because children need to be able to get along with other children. Socialization at an early age helps young ones learn to cooperate and negotiate, and to respect others feelings. Enrolling a child in preschool, daycare or story hour can help to enforce these skills. It can also teach them the importance of patience and sharing. Another way to develop these skills in children is by playing board games with them.

Listening SkillsListening skills are crucial when considering kindergarten readiness. A child must be able to sit still and listen to directions and respect authority. Enrolling your child in a preschool program or program at the local library can greatly help prepare them for what is needed in kindergarten.

Develop IndependenceThings like putting on and taking off a coat, buttoning and snapping skills are a must. When getting your child ready for kindergarten, be sure they can follow two step directions. It’s also important that they are independent in the bathroom and have good hygiene skills like blowing their nose and washing their hands. These are all skills that can be taught at home prior to kindergarten.

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Fine Motor SkillsA child must be able to hold a pencil and use crayons, scissors and glue. Parents can help children with this by allowing them to string beads, cut paper strips, or play with playdough. Another way to help with fine motor skills development is by having your child use a spray bottle to water plants around the house.

Learn Shapes, Numbers And Letters Children getting ready for kindergarten should able to recognize basic shapes and be able to sort by size and color. Teach your child the alphabet and how to write and recognize their first name. When you go to the grocery store, make a list and have your child help you find the items on your list. Use every day experiences as teaching moments and find creative ways to reinforce letter recognition. Also, use play as a learning experience whenever possible. For example, have your child count how many blocks it took to build a tower. Children who are going into kindergarten should be able to count and recognize numbers up 20.

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Amanda Keeler is a freelance writer from Cleveland, Ohio. She has a B.A. from The Ohio State University in Journalism. Her work can be found on

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