Back to articles Start Getting Ready For Kindergarten Now

Categories: Parenting

If you are a parent in the same situation as me, you too are in complete disbelief that your little, drooling, helpless burping baby is all grown up and will be attending "Big Kids" school this fall. With sunny days finally here, September seems a million miles away, but there are things we can begin doing now with our 3 and 4 year olds to help prepare them for the big day.
So for all the moms and dads that will have little ones reaching this milestone, I have attached some tips and advice on how we can make the transition smoother, cobbled together from an orientation I attended and from a great site the government has set up at:

Start talking to your child now- Just one example - will they be taking the bus? if so, when you see a school bus on the street, what a great way to start the conversation about how fun it must be for all the kids laughing together in the big yellow bus.

Visit the school - now is the time, while school is still in session to take your child to the school and walk around getting familiar. Let your child see all the fun artwork on the walls and the playground equipment, this will help ease fear of what this new place is about. Most schools, if they have not done so already, have an orientation night.

Off and on - by September, your child should be able to dress and undress themselves without much assistance so have your child practise getting shoes on and off, zippers, buttons, coats etc. This will help build a sense of independence in your child.

Letters and numbers - foster an environment where children get to see and identify numbers and letters. While at the grocery store you can make it fun by counting the apples or sing the alphabet song while driving in the car.

Keep doing what you are already doing - As parents we already encourage sharing, playing fairly, asking questions and listening ... so keep going. These skills will only help to enhance a better environment for everyone at the school.

Before and After School:
Will your child be taking the bus? Durham Student Transportation Services offers a school bus orientation day to introduce your children to the bus and bus safety prior to the first day of school. Dates and times depend on where you are located and what bus line services your school. For details visit:

If you do need to find before and after school care, don?t leave it until the end of summer....start searching now. Many local daycares provide before and after care, but not all. My son currently attends a daycare that does not.

Best tip of all - enjoy the summer with your little one, soon it will be a new beginning with new friends and memories.

After 10 years in the communications field, Cathy Rankin now spends her time with her husband and 3 year old son, providing her with ample ideas and material as she embarks on a new journey as a freelance writer in Whitby.