Summer School at Home with HeidiSongs: Getting Ready for Kindergarten, Week 3!

Welcome to Week 3 of Summer School at Home with Heidi Songs! We have great ideas to work on over the summer so your little one will feel confident and prepared to start Kindergarten in the fall. If you are just joining us, check out Week 1 and Week 2.

Campus Visits

Helping children to become comfortable with their physical space will go a long way in reducing first day fears. Over the summer take time to visit the campus your child will be attending. Show them where you will drop them off or where the bus will be. Help them to find the main office, library, bathrooms, and drinking fountains.

The kindergartners at my school were all greeted with personalized lawn signs to take home on their first day of school!

This is also a great time to have conversations about following rules, who to ask for help if they need it, and what to do if they feel sick or forget their lunch. To help keep the conversations going at home, take photos on your visit. Having pictures will help keep the campus in mind and allow the child to gain confidence in their ability to find their way around the school.

We have talked before about how important it is to help children learn that the first letter in their name is capitalized and the rest are lowercase. To help them understand this concept even better, try adding movement and sound into their practice.

Sidewalk Shimmy

Take your kids outside to write their names with sidewalk chalk! You write it first, if necessary; then let your child copy it.

1. Write your child's name on the sidewalk using chalk.

2. Say each letter of your child's name and then have them repeat it.

3. Have your child spell out their name again but this time when they do it, have them jump as high as they can for the first letter and then crouch down for all the letters that follow.

4. Have your child write their own name and repeat the movements.

5. Repeat, repeat, repeat!

Shout and whisper

1. Write out your child's name on a piece of paper.

2. Say each letter of your child's name and have them repeat it.

3. Have your child trace the letters of their name with a finger and say each letter name out loud.

Put your child's hand under your own and guide their hand as they trace or try to write their name.

4. Have your child trace each letter a second time. This time, have them say the first letter of their name in a loud voice and each following letter in a whisper.

5. Do it again!

Pick a letter any letter.
Here's a  game that can be played with Scrabble tiles or scraps of paper.  Or, you can download and print out a free set of Scrabble tiles on paper here!

1. Put letter tiles or scrapes of paper with individual letters written on them in a bowl or a sock works just fine.

2. Take turns with your child picking a tile or piece of paper.

3. On each person's turn, pick a tile.  Say the name of the letter, make the sound of the letter, and then say the name of the letter again.

4.  Each player earns the number of points on the Scrabble tiles if he can tell the name and sound of the letter! Give your child a small counter such as a block, a penny, a bean, or a piece of cereal for each point.  Play through until there are no tiles left.

5. For round two, on each person's turn, first make the sound of the letter and then have the other person say the name of the letter.

6.  Pssss:  It's fine to let your child experience NOT winning a game from time to time!  Remember that your child will not always get to be the winner or go first every time in a class of twenty or more children, so getting used to being a good sport is a great idea!

Letter of the Day
Each day choose a letter to be the, "letter of the day." Start the day by watching the Letters and Sounds DVD for that letter with your child.

Throughout the day challenge your child to find the letter of the day, say the name, make the sound and sing the song.

Consider going on a letter walk. If the letter of the day is "L," look of leaves, lights, lizards, or LEGOS. Consider serving food that start with the letter of the day to really celebrate.

Make lemonade, have lasagna for dinner or enjoy a lollipop.

As you go through the day, help your child to write the upper and lowercase version of the letter, same the letter name, make the letter sound, and sing the letter song.

Junk Mail Treasure Hunt

To help little ones with number recognition, grab your junk mail! Have your child circle all the number 5's on a flyer or see if they can find the numbers, 1 to 10. For more ideas for what to do with junk mail click here.


Grab your Jumpin' Numbers Vol. 1 DVD or Number Jumble DVD and flashcards and play a game of charades with your child.

Review the numbers 0-10 on the DVD together and practice singing the song and doing the movements. Put all the flash cards into a hat or bag and take turns pulling a card and acting out the movements of the song, and see if the other person can guess the number or shape!

Hidden Number Worksheet Placemats

While you are preparing dinner, have your child color in hidden number worksheets to use as placemats for dinner. This gives your child independent time to work on their skills, with you close enough to ask for help if they run into trouble.

Setting the Table

For counting practice, have your child set the table for meals. Have them count out the silverware, napkins, plates and cups as they set them out on the table. To encourage addition and subtraction skills ask questions like, "How many plates would we need if Grandma was with us for dinner?" or "How many cups should you set out if big brother was eating at a friend's house?"

Mirror Mirror

To help your little one better understand beginning sounds and rhyming words, get in front of a mirror. Start off by having them say words that start with the same sound, like make and map. Have them say the word very slowly and watch the way their mouth moves in the mirror. Move on to rhyming words like, ball, mall, doll, and small. Seeing their mouth move will help them use the visual connection to help them "hear" and identify the sounds that they are making in those words. You can take turns coming up with words that rhyme or words that start with the same sound.

Check back next week for more ideas for your fourth week of Kindergarten Prep Summer School with HeidiSongs!  Sign up for the email blog updates so that you don't miss a thing!  

And click below to visit the posts on Free Kindergarten Prep Summer School, Week One and Week Two!

Click here to see our post on Free Kindergarten Prep Summer School at Home, Week 1!

Click here to see our post on Free Kindergarten Prep Summer School at Home, Week 2!


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