The pressure of kindergarten?


Kindergarten is changing and probably more demanding than when you were there.

Many schools are doing kindergarten assessments soon, so it's understandable why some parents are feeling the pressure.

What do kids need to know before their first school experience?

Experts like Sarah Wright, who teaches a kindergarten readiness class says children need to practice skills with their small hands.

"You actually have to build those finer muscles because you are doing all kinds of writing, you are doing cutting with scissors," said Wright.

Story time are your local library is a place for children to learn not just their letters, but about each other.

"Just to be socially around other children their own age is really more important than the educational aspect at this age," said mom Nikki Jones. "They have to know how to get along with other kids."

Playing games can be an important step when you help your child learn sounds and phonics as they begin to read.

"Reading three new picture books a week actually can increase a child's vocabulary by 40-percent," said Wright.

Nikki Jones tells her children have benefited from story time and kindergarten readiness classes.

Jones wants 4-year-old Desmond to be prepared academically and emotionally.

"Your kids taking direction form different adults is very beneficial to them," said Jones.

Learning to focus and pay attention is also part of kindergarten readiness.

"What kiddo doesn't need to learn you go to keep your hands to yourself, you have got to learn to take turns, line up," said Wright.

Grandma Marcia Jarrett tells us children learn through play.

Jarrett vocates for keeping it fun and fostering life-long learning.

"I like this atmosphere, I like [that] they encourage the children, not push them by encourage them," said Jarrett.

By the time children reach kindergarten, the experts say kids should be able to recognize and write their own name, and numbers one to ten.

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