March is the month when parents of rising kindergarten students begin thinking about kindergarten registration. To learn all you need to know about when to register for kindergarten, visit this website to learn more about kindergarten registration requirements through Pitt County Schools. You can also watch our Kindergarten 101 information session here.

But you might want to get started on your kindergarten journey by reading these words of wisdom from counselor Laura Bennett from Wintergreen Primary School:

We all know that working with a child on skills like letter and number recognition is important before starting kindergarten. What are a few activities you would recommend parents do with their child to get them emotionally prepared for kindergarten?   

Kindergarten brings on a new level of independence and autonomy. One activity to emotionally prepare students for Kindergarten would be to have your child practice independent activities. Have your child begin picking out the night before what they want to wear the next day. Set up bedtime and nighttime routines and encourage your child to independently complete tasks associated with those routines without continual prompts or reminders. The more activities that you first teach and then have your child practice independently will help them with independently making decisions at school.”

What are some social expectations given to new kindergarteners and how can parents help their children prepare for what might be a slightly new social setting? 

Self-regulation of emotions and being able to express feelings and needs is a vital skill, as well as understanding how to take turns and share with other children. Parents can help their children prepare by exposing them to other social settings. This could include visiting a park/playground and discussing appropriate social interactions prior to play. It could also include allowing for opportunities where your child goes out with others, perhaps family members or friends and is provided an opportunity to experience socialization with children of varying ages.

Parents need social and emotional care too! What words of wisdom would you share with parents to help them prepare for the emotional and social changes that will happen as their child heads off to kindergarten?

Sending a child off to school can be very exciting and very emotional at the same time. Recognize that all feelings are okay and that while your child is at school that they are going to be cared for, loved and will learn more than you could ever imagine. You will be absolutely amazed by the end of the year at the positive emotional and social growth that is cultivated through a collaborative effort between school and home.