Your role in connecting children, families and schools is crucial. When parents understand what resources are available to assist their children transition to kindergarten successfully, they feel ready to help their children feel comfortable with the big step of beginning school. You are an important link to understanding the process into the Chesapeake Public School system. Create a kindergarten transition plan for the children you teach in September, before they begin their preschool year. Use the resources available to you. Encourage your families to register early and to become a part of the school their child will attend. These steps may seem small, but they are vital to each child’s success.
- Encourage family participation in parent workshops during preschool, at the end of the school year, and during kindergarten registration.
- Make information accessible- utilize newsletters or display a Community Board in a drop off area for families to see that includes school and kindergarten transition information.
- Encourage kindergarten teachers and principals to visit your center and read to your children.
- Connect with Chesapeake Public Schools- encourage your Pre-K teachers/students to perform during PTA and field day programs.
- Read kindergarten transition books to children.
- Organize a field trip for your students to visit kindergarten classes and/or encourage older after school students in your program to discuss their kindergarten experiences to your students. Roll play the first day of kindergarten or organize a yellow bus tour.
- Make visitation books with your students after kindergarten class visits: “What We Saw in Kindergarten”
- Ensure that you are aware of the Kindergarten registration orientation/workshop dates near you so that you may provide that information to your families.
- Make sure that you are connected within your community: get on The Advocate mailing list, call your feeder CPS schools to get on PAS (Parent Alert System) or contact Kathryn Jessee to get on the R U Ready email list.
- Encourage the parents of children with special needs in your care to provide needed information to the school system to assist in student success. You can do this by providing student screening information or student work to parents.
- Let your students know that you are still encouraging their success as they transition to kindergarten. Send a card wishing them a great first day of kindergarten.
- Distribute “Kindergarten Here I Come” calendars to your school families.
- Collaborate and connect with schools and kindergarten teachers to ensure successful kindergarten transition for your students. One of the ways you can do this is by attending school meetings.
- Utilize the local library or bookmobile to encourage the love of reading at your family home/child care center.
- Make kindergarten registration information available at community and family events at your center or family home.
- Provide Community Connections and Chesapeake Parent Resource guides to families.
- Coordinate older students to read to Pre-K children in the school library or child care center- assign K/Pre-K reading buddies.
*The activities listed are a suggested guide. All options may not be available at all schools.