School Readiness

School Readiness

Smooth Transition From Home To Classroom

Are your children ready to make that transition? How do you know?

For children entering a classroom–a structured environment, often for the first time–the experience can be pretty traumatic. In order to make sure a child is ready for the transition, a number of factors should be considered:

  • Does the child know his/her birth certificate name?
  • Does the child know mother/father’s names (other than mama or dad)?
  • Does the child know how to sit still for at least 30 minutes?
  • Does the child demonstrate ability to focus on starting and completing a task (tying shoes, coloring a page in a coloring book, etc.)?
  • Does the child know where their address and parent’s telephone number?
  • Does the child know his/her birth date?
  • Does the child recognize letters of the alphabet?
  • Does the child recognize numbers 0-9?
  • Does the child use the bathroom by themselves?
  • Does the child know how to hold a pencil/crayon?
  • Does the child know how to hold a book?
  • Does the child know how to follow instructions?
  • Does the child know how to socialize appropriately with other children?

The above are the basics that every child should know before they ever cross the threshold of a classroom. Knowing these fundamental basics will insure a child’s success and learning will not be as traumatic as it for those who don’t know. A traumatized child means parents get lots of phone calls from teachers and principals.

A good pediatrician will always tell parents if there are physical or cognitive concerns about a child by the time they’re 3 years old. They monitor physical, fine motor skill development and the child’s ability to follow simple directions. Making sure a child is vaccinated ensures they’ll not infect others or get infected with communicable diseases. Make sure a record is kept of all their developmental milestones in a safe place.

To get a child ready for this monumental occasion, read to them, sing to them, play games with them that ignite a desire to learn and when they get to school, they’ll be ready to learn what the teacher has been prepared to teach. A child who sees a parent read a book is more apt to want to read for themselves. Having a variety of books available for children is a necessity to encourage strong literacy skills.

Breathe deeply–inhale–hold it, now let it out. Helping a child make this transition can be as easy as breathing when you know they’re ready for school. Help them and yourself–make sure they are SCHOOL READY!



Considering Admiration!

Considering Admiration!

Free yourself, like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, like a bird from the snare of the fowler. Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest. Proverbs 6:5-8 NIV

We often choose people we set on a pedestal–those we greatly admire and then when their imperfections and flaws are exposed, we get angry and sometimes, we rebel by interjecting venom that poisons us and all around us.

Not all of us can be right at the same time in the same place, but we can be righteous in all we do. If we only do what is right–at all times–we never have to consider what happens if we do something wrong because we won’t. Sound complicated? We live complex lives and throughout our journey, we make decisions based upon the information and experiences we have at hand. If our experiences and our information is limited, our views may seem a bit short-sighted, but when we broaden our experiences and gain greater access to information, the likelihood that our views will change are incredible.

For instance, when we were in kindergarten and learned all we needed to know about life–the experience was limited and the information provided was at a level that our undeveloped minds could handle. We thought recess was the greatest part of the day and for some, it was the storytelling hour. Every person in the class came away with different perceptions of what kindergarten was about, but we learned: to share, wait our turns, be respectful, and to move to the right when traveling–walking down a hall or driving. And many of us learned to be considerate and most of us–had a great deal of admiration forĀ  our teacher. Unless the teacher did something really wrong–we admired them and remembered.

As we navigated middle school and high school and college–we discovered there was so much more to learning and being in a classroom that we began to think (and not just swallow everything told to us) and eventually–our views about things we learned in kindergarten changed. It’s called–maturing–and it’s a part of life that most of us enjoy.

But then there are those who–though past the age of 50–still act like they are still in kindergarten. The saddest part of all is there are people who admire–the kindergarten mentality which makes one wonder–if the admirer–ever matured. And it is these people who concern me and how they evaluate admirable qualities in a person.

So, when we express admiration for a person or an ideology–perhaps we should consider the source of our admiration and evaluate our own maturity if we admire others who are immature and act as though they are still in kindergarten.

The ant–a tiny creature with a tiny brain, but obviously smarter than those of us with a larger capacity to think, evaluate, and assess and we don’t. What exactly is there to admire about a non-thinking person? Absolutely nothing–unless we happen to be an ant. Let’s choose to admire Jesus and become more like Him!