Preparing your preschooler for Kindergarten is important, and starting early is a benefit for your child. Here are the literary skills that your child should be on his or her way to mastering before heading to school:
1. Your child should know the parts of a book, and how these parts function. This includes following the text from top to bottom, holding a book and turning the pages correctly, taking care of the book properly, and connecting words with pictures within the book.
2. Your child should begin to track text and print. He or she should be
reading from left to right and top to bottom, learning where to begin reading in the book, finding words, recognizing words and the spaces between them and realizing the pattern of reading from left to right.
3. Your child should be able to recognize and say aloud all uppercase and lowercase letters. He or she should also be able to find letters in a text, recognize that letters make up words, recite the alphabet, name letters, match upper and lowercase letters and find letters in places other than a book (ie. signs).
4. Your child should understand that words consist of a sequence of sounds. He or she should be able to listen for sounds in words, put sounds together, be aware of one-to-one letter and sound correspondence, recognize that different words can begin with the same sound, orally name letters by their sounds, identify a letter based on it's spoken sound, recognize that there are ending sounds and connect sounds with letters.
5. Your child should have a basic and simple sight word vocabulary. He or she should be able to recognizes some words by sight, read a few words, connect
concepts and pictures with words, connect words with familiar household items and identify a sentence.
Work on the above literary skills with your preschooler this year, and your child will be ready to start kindergarten next year with a knowledge base for success. Easy readers, like the Bob books are extremely useful for the preschool crowd who wishes to read early, and be sure to visit your local library for story time as well. Read together every day also, as this will create a lifelong love of literature in your child!