Being prepared to do well in school is something that I value highly in our house. One because I was raised that way-finishing school, graduating, and then going onto college was the biggest goal for myself when I was younger and it is something I want my children to have to opportunity to do. Two because Rey and I have both seen what a difference an education can mean and we want our children’s lives to be that much easier than ours. Therefore we have tried to make sure they are as best prepared as they can be.
In our house this means:
- Getting enough sleep at night. For our kids that is minimum of 10 hours-crazy right but they really do need it. Sleep Guide
- Making sure they had a good breakfast-trust me they would love to just have colored cereal with marshmallows everyday but that is not a good breakfast. Having a good breakfast will ensure they have enough energy to focus and participate in school. Still not convinced check this out- 5 Important Reason Your Child Should Eat Breakfast
- Giving them the tools they need to succeed. This is a quite place to do homework and supplies. In our house the tv cannot be on if someone is trying to do homework and that goes for Rey and I too. The kids just can’t concentrate and its not fair to make it that much harder on them.
- No more than 30 minutes a day of screen time on school days. This is because research studies show kids who watch less tv do better in school. Why screen time matters.
- I try to read with the kids at least once a day usually at night right before bed. Reading opens the door to so much more. It really makes a difference. 5 reasons why parents should be reading to children.
- See my posts about our routine because it really helps them too.
For the younger kids I try to focus mainly social skills and behavior because they need this as a basis for being able to communicate, pay attention, and learn. We sing songs/fingerplays (Itsy Bitsy Spider), we read, and do art. I also play with them-we play games (matching, memory, candyland, and chutes and ladder) but we also most importantly play pretend. We play dress up, house, and Sadie’s favorite restaurant. Pretend play can cover so much content. Pretend play can go anywhere you take it-there are no limits to what it can cover. Examples are manners, counting, letters, money, and so many skills like language and expressing emotion.
We by no means do all these things every single day. I pick and choose one day I play with them, one day I focus on reading a book or two and then an art activity, the next day maybe I’m just not able to actually facilitate something so they play with gak or do art on their own coloring, drawing, or gluing scrap paper.
I will share some of the activities the younger kids and I do together in later posts.
I hope me sharing what we do helps you and your family! 🙂