The Building Blocks of Learning
Math, Language Arts & Socialization
Here is a checklist of skills necessary for Kindergarten success. As you help your child build these skills, remember that PLAY is the optimum learning state. The more FUN your child has, the better the brain will learn!
Abstract mathematical reasoning requires children to understand language and concepts for how things fit together, represent, and can be ordered in space.
- Identify colors, numbers, and simple shapes
- Draw a simple shape when instructed
- Write numbers when instructed
- Identify coins by name.
- Reproduce a simple imagined idea
Examples: Block stacking, and assign use to finished product, i.e.drive toy car through block-bridge.
PATTERNS / SEQUENCE / ORDER:
- String beads in designated patterns of color, shape, size
- Stack color rings from largest to smallest
- Arrange items in order by size, quantity, or shape.
Child can sort objects by color, size, shape, texture, uses, and types
- Complete age-appropriate puzzles
- String beads in adult-directed patterns of color, shape, size
- Stack color rings in designated order.
COUNTING: 1/1 correspondence.
Example: Child takes 3 objects from a group of similar objects, counting correctly as he brings each item towards him.
- Child demonstrates understanding of “top”, “bottom”, “above”, “below”, “under”, “in”, “out”, “behind”, “in front”, “next”, “close”, “far”.
Example: Using a small box and car, child correctly places car upon instruction.
QUANTIFIED / MEASUREMENT VOCABULARY:
Child demonstrates understanding of:
- Size, such as more, less, big, bigger, biggest; small, smaller, smallest.
Example: Using graduated measuring cups, child identifies size.
- Amounts, such as less, more, full, empty
Example: Have child use graduated cups and water to demonstrate concepts
- Child demonstrates understanding of first, middle, last, next, after, before.
Example: Using three small toys, child points to correct toy based on directive.
Children need to recognize sounds, patterns, representation and symbols of language, and concepts of how sounds fit together, represent, and can be ordered in preparation for more abstract concepts.
Child can identify:
- Letters, sounds using manipulatives and print representation
- Objects in pictures by name
Child can answer simple questions after listening to a simple story: Who? What happened? How did the story end?
Child answers simple “If”, “why, and ”when” questions.
Child can recognize and manipulate the sounds and syllables used to compose words.
- Rhyme simple words: “bat,” “cat,” “that”, “rat”, and nonsense words, such as: “ilk,” “bilk,” “dilk,” “tay” “kay” “zay”
- Identify the first sound in a word
- Name words that start with the same sound.
Identify “sound”(speech sound), “word”(spoken word), “real word” versus “nonsense word”
SOUND /SYMBOL RELATIONSHIPS: Child looks at a letter and says corresponding sound.
MUSIC / SING ALONG:
- Child can sing along, or independently, with simple lyrics to a familiar song.
- Child is able to create and share a short one or two sentence story.
- Child can answer questions requiring inference:
Examples: What do you think Snow White is thinking / feeling / planning? How do you think this story will end?
VISUAL ATTENTION / MEMORY:
- VISUAL: Child can look at a picture card of 3-4 objects for 5”, and then name them from memory.
- AUDITORY: can repeat 3-4 numbers or simple words from memory.
Fine Motor Skills:
- Assemble simple puzzles
- Manipulate clay; finger paints
- Copy simple shapes, such as circle, square, triangle, +, x
- Stack blocks up to nine high
- Print letters
- Draw a person that includes head, body (may be stick figure), and 4 additional parts
- Print own first and last name in upper or lower case without a model
- Cut out a simple shape within a ¼ inch
Child’s eyes are able to:
- Briefly gaze at a fixed point
- Track a point horizontally, vertically, diagonally, and peripherally
- Converge and diverge on an approaching / distancing point
- Listen to a story
- Follow rules
- Transition when given preparation
- Follow teacher / adult instruction
- Follow schedule
- Take turns, share, and cooperate with peers
- Express anger / frustration verbally rather than physically