Kindergarten is the first year of official schooling for all children. While some children might have preschool and are off to a head start, others have not had such an advantage and might be behind other children when they start kindergarten. It is during this year that all children, regardless of what level they come in at, must reach a standard benchmark of proficiency to be succesful in the rest of their education. Because this year is so important in a child's educational future, instruction must be reseach based and delivered in a developmentally-appropriate manner. These resources are to help parents and educators as they work with children in this important age group.
The National Reading Panel Report (2000) listed five essential components to a successful reading program. These five critical areas are:
These areas of instructions should be taught and practiced in a systematic method, meaning that they are planned and delivered in a purposeful sequential manner to increase student acheivement. Research also show that a good reading program goes hand-in-hand with a quality writing program. Reading and writing are related to each other. Reading affects writing, and writing affects reading. Because these two subjects are intertwined they should be taught together. Research shows that children learn more when reading and writing are taught together rather than in isolation.
The National Council for Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) has identified Number and Operations, Geometry and Measurement as the most important standards for creating a strong foundation in mathematics for children ages 3-6.
The first three of these standards come from the NCTM, the remaining three standards are used to align the preschool standards to the common core state standards used in kindergarten. Together these six areas of instruction provide children with the foundation needed to be successful.
Assessing Kindergarten Skills
The main focus of kindergarten is to teach the skills and prerequisites necessary to get kids:
reading at level C or higher.
begin writing complete sentences with 3-4 words.
identify the basic parts of speech.
solve basic addition and subtraction problems.
compose and decompose numbers using 10's and 1's.
work with 2 and 3 dimensional shapes.
compare and sort objects.
Use the following assessments to see where your child is on the necessary skills to be successful with the main focus of kindergarten. These assessments can also be given throughout the year to measure your child's progress. These assessments are not a comprehensive list of all the skills necessary to be successful in kindergarten. The assessements should only be used occasional to measure progress. These are not a substitute for quality instruction.