The Business of Preparing for Our Future What Pre-K Students Needs to Know


As Inglewood families adjust to school closures and elementary, middle school and high school students are completing their studies online at home, older children may be frequently interrupted by their pre-school siblings whose pre-schools are also closed. Since my grandson faced this, as a former Inglewood Unified School District teacher and a semi-retired grandparent, I sought to identify a plan for my ‘Sidekick’.’

Following is what my four-year-old, pre-school student and I are working on that may serve as a guide for grandparents who are similarly situated.

Your pre-school child should be able to recognize their first name and then their middle and last. They should know how to spell their name and attempt to write their first name which doesn’t have to be perfect. The lined paper that is used for pre-school is good. Also, the Ticonderoga Beginner pencils (can order on Amazon) are the best for preschoolers developing their gross motor skill.

They should be reciting the alphabet by rote. The proper name is not the ABC’s. Recognize the letters of the alphabet -capital and lowercase letters.

Math: Counting by rote. Preschool students should count all the way to 100. Consider getting Shawn Brown’s video, “Can You Count with Me?”

Math: Pre-K children should be counting objects. When they count, for example; “1,2,3, (blocks or cookies or objects). Ask, “How many do you have?” Or how many do you have in all?” They should be able to answer, “3,” and not have to go back to recounting them. This may take time.

*Math:  Identify the basic shapes. Circle,triangle, square, rectangle, star, rhombus, (diamond), and oval. Shapes can be taught with colors.

Days of the week can be taught in a fun way. Use the tune of the “Addams Family,” theme. This can be found online. “Days of the Week, snap snap…repeat…repeat…There’s Sunday and there’s Monday, there’s Tuesday and there’s Wednesday, there’s Thursday and there’s Friday and then there’s Saturday. Days of the week, snap, snap, repeat, etc.”

Even though we are in California, teach the seasons of the year. Again, you can enlist Shawn Brown’s help. Also, show Sidekick photos of the beautiful colors of fall, winter snow scenes, spring flowers blooming and summer. Make it personal and tell how you witnessed the changing of the seasons in other parts of the nation using the globe or map.

Science: the basic seed principle is a great start. Planting something that will grow in a cup of dirt. Teach that plants need light, air, water and nutrients (soil) to grow. Also, they need space to grow.

Art and Music teach sidekick any artistic or musical grandparents or other family members. This also comes under Social Studies and African American or Latina History

 Geography:  Teach your child to answer the followingquestions:What city do we live in? What state? What country? What continent? Purchase an inexpensive globe. Show him the oceans and mountain regions and the continents of Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Antarctica, Europe, and Australia.

 General Knowledge: Your student should know their age and birthday, address, parent and grandad’s phone numbers.

*Read to them* as much as possible, short easy reading books about things he likes or peaks his interest. You can ask comprehension questions. Who was in the story? (day or night, season) What happened? When did this story take place? Where were they? Was there a problem? If there was a problem How was it solved?

You’re probably doing all this, along with teaching him to be a responsible and respectful young person as they grow up.

This was accomplished by acquiring the Character Super Heroes: Brave, Responsible, Honest, Cooperative and Kind!

Good luck with your Pre-K teaching and your child’s learning.


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