Ah, July!

The month before school begins. A month of fresh garden veggies. A month of long hot days. The month Kindergarten Countdown takes place.

Kindergarten? In the summer? Well, kinda.

Kindergarten Countdown is a month long time for children getting ready to go into kindergarten to prepare for school. They get the chance to get to know the school, meet teachers, learn the skills necessary for them to learn in kindergarten.

I get excited every year at this time. I love seeing the little kiddos as they mature in just four short weeks. They start Kindergarten Countdown timid and unsure of what to expect. They end with new friends and new skills.

Developing children to be ready to learn is a process that begins at birth. How can you better prepare your child to learn? It really is quite simple. Talk to them. Read to them. Expose them to as many positive experiences as you can. You don’t have to spend a lot of money. But you do need to talk to them. Let them hear as many words from your mouth as you can.

IMG_2405You should also read to your child – yes, even an infant should be read to. It is a great time for parents to form bonds with their baby. Holding them and reading to them is critical for their development. Sign them up for the Imagination Library to receive a free book in the mail every month (until they turn 5). Take them to the library for books and for story time.

Expose them to the interaction of letters with their world. The most important letter for your child is the first letter of their name. As you are driving to the childcare or the grocery store, look for signs with that letter. They will be excited and it will reinforce that letter in their mind.

The important thing to remember is that you don’t have to do anything perfectly. But you do need to do something.

Talk. Read. Experience.