The goal of preschool is to provide the child with a solid foundation of academics, joy of learning, and social and emotional growth to prepare the child for kindergarten.  There are many things that parents, grandparents, and teachers can do to best prepare the child for this.  

Below are two different "Kindergarten Readiness Indicator Checklists" and a list of ideas to prepare a child for kindergarten.  These are the skills that will help ease a child’s transition into kindergarten.  The items listed are not required for the child to enter kindergarten, but will definitely help build their confidence.  You will notice that there is a difference between the lists.  Contact your local school to find out the expectations of your school district.

Read Heidi's Thoughts
 - Is your child truly ready for Kindergarten?


Checklist #1

This information was taken from a local elementary school's kindergarten packet of information.

Reading Readiness:
o Remembers pictures from a printed page
o Repeats a 6-8 word sentence
o Pretends to read (has been read to often)
o Identifies own first name in writing
o Prints first name correctly (first letter capital, lowercase)
o Answers questions about a short story
o Looks at pictures and tells a story
o Understand words are read left to right
o Knows the letters of the alphabet (capital)
o Knows nursery rhymes
o Knows the meaning of simple words

o Understand day and night
o Knows age and birthday

Recognizes Colors, Numbers, and Shapes:
o Recognizes colors
o Recognizes triangle, circle, oval, diamond
o Counts to 10
o Can count objects with one to one correspondence to 10

Listening and Sequencing:
o Follow simple directions
o Pays attention
o Recognizes common sounds
o Retells a simple story in sequence
o Repeats a sequence of sounds
o Repeats a sequence of numbers heard
o Understands big and little
o Understands long and short
o Understands up and down
o Understands in and out
o Understands front and back
o Understands over and under
o Understands hot and cold
o Understands empty and full
o Understands more and less
o Understands fast and slow
o Understands top and bottom

Motor Skills:
o Run
o Walk a straight line
o Jump
o Hop
o Alternate feet walking down stairs
o March
o Stand on one foot for 10 seconds
o Walk backwards for 5 feet
o Throw a ball
o Paste pictures on paper
o Clap hands
o Button clothes
o Build with blocks
o Complete simple puzzles
o Draw and color beyond a simple scribble
o Zip clothes
o Tie shoes
o Control pencil and crayon well
o Handle scissors – correctly hold and cut
o Cut and draw simple shapes

o Expresses self verbally
o Looks forward to going to school
o Recognizes authority
o Shares with others
o Helps with family chores
o Identifies other children by name
o Can take care of toilet needs independently
o Cares of own belongings
o Dresses self
o Brushes teeth
o Can be away from parents 2-3 hours
o Joins in family conversation
o Carries a plate of food
o Maintains self-control
o Gets along with others
o Talks easily
o Meets visitors without shyness
o Puts toys away

Child Knows:
o Body parts
o Own first and last name
o Parent’s name
o Home address
o Home phone number
o When to use a Kleenex
o Own sex


Checklist #2

  1. Speaks in complete sentences.
  2. Follows directions with at least two steps.
  3. Understands words such as "top" and "bottom" and "big" and "little".
  4. Makes simple predictions and comments about a story being read.
  5. Matches two pictures that are alike.
  6. Looks at groups of objects and says which are the same shape, color, or size.
  7. Tells things that together (i.e. spoon and fork are for eating; fish and a boat go in the water).
  8. Repeats a pattern you start (i.e. step, step, jump; step, step, jump).
  9. Puts 3 pictures in order (i.e. 1. Planting flower seed   2.  Flowers growing   3.  Picking flowers).
  10. Says or sings familiar songs and nursery rhymes.
  11. Retells a simple story such as The Three Little Pigs after listening to it while looking at the pictures in the book.
  12. Works puzzles.
  13. Recognizes and names at least five colors.
  14. Recognizes his or her own first name in print.
  15. Recognizes letters in his or her own first name.
  16. Begins to write some of the letters in his or her own first name.
  17. Recognizes words or signs he or she sees often (i.e.  McDonald's, Walmart, stop signs).
  18. Holds and looks at books correctly (i.e.  holds the book right side up, turns pages one at a time from front to back).
  19. Recognizes rhyming words such as cat and hat.
  20. Recognizes and names at least 10 letters of the alphabet.
  21. Matches a letter with the beginning sound of a word (i.e. matches the letter "b" with a pictures of a banana).
  22. Expresses ideas through pictures he or she draws.
  23. Counts at least five objects.
  24. Sees a written numeral "3" and understand that it means three objects.
  25. Adds and subtracts familiar objects such as cookies.
  26. Puts written numerals in order from 1 to 5.
  27. Recognizes and names three shapes.
  28. Counts from 1 to 10 correctly.
  29. Tells if she or she is a boy or girl.
  30. Tells first and last name.
  31. Tells first and last name of parent(s).
  32. Tells how old he or she is.
  33. Takes care of own needs such as toileting, washing hands, and dressing.
  34. Adjust to new situations without parents being there.
  35. Uses pencils, crayons, and markers for drawing and writing; cuts with scissors.
  36. Draws a line, circle, X, and +.
  37. Runs, jumps, hops, throws, catches, and bounces a ball.

    (Unknown Source)

Ideas to Help Prepare the Child

This is a list of suggestions that we received from our local elementary school to help children prepare for Kindergarten.  You will see that the ABCJLM Curriculum far surpasses these ideas!

  • Help your child begin to write their name using only 1 capital letter at the beginning.
  • Help your child be able to recognize their name in print.
  • Help your child learn some of the letters of the alphabet.
  • Familiarize them with both capital and lower case letters.
  • Read to your child regularly.  As you read, talk about the words and pictures that you see in the story.  Reading to your child will increase their vocabulary and will strengthen their pre-reading skills.
  • Allow your child to explore their pencils, crayons, glue and scissors.
  • Help your child learn the names of basic colors and shapes.
  • Count with your child frequently.  We would like for them to be able to count to at least 20 when entering kindergarten.
  • Familiarize your child with his or her personal information such as their birthday, phone number, address, and  parents' name.
  • Use Scissors to cut straight and curved lines
  • Use a small dot of glue ("Just a dot, not a lot!")
  • Draw a picture with details (ex:  a person with face, eyes, ears, nose, mouth, hair, body, arms, legs, feet, toes, clothing, etc.)

Also read...
Kindergarten Behavior Readiness
Books to Prepare a Child for the First Day of Kindergarten


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