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How do I get my 3 1/2 year old ready for pre-k?
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How do I get my 3 1/2 year old ready for pre-k?

I have a stubborn and very little Independence 3 1/2 year old that only likes to watch TV and play my PlayStation. I live in a cold part of the country and there is little to do in the winter time so we resort to a lot of the above. I need to get some ideas on how to get him ready to start a daily routine with the rest of the class. He would throw a temper tantrum when asked to do anything other than what he wants to do. I know letting him make his own decisions and learn his limitations is a part of growing up but I can discipline my child and the teachers don't have that ability because of this widely adopted idea that it is bad to discipline a child. Hey it is what the good Lord instructed us to do when a child is not obedient. I can get my son to do what he is told by sending him to time out but this is not exercised as strongly by the teachers........Oh yeah so my point is what is a good schedule I can do at home with some activities that will get him ready for school?
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1294482_tn?1354492888
I would suggest some fun learning games that he can interact with you and learn. You could also try sending him to pre school. Most pre schools take children at 3 and then he can get the exposure needed. Even if this is for 2 hours a day 2 days a week. If he likes TV so much how about learning videos? Also, have you tried some computer games that are educational? My 2 year old loves the computer so we have found that he likes these very much.
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973741_tn?1342346373
Question-----------  is he in preschool now?  Are you anticipating problems down the road or is he already experiencing them?

My thought is that the majority of kids find preschool to be very fun and teachers actually do a pretty good job of keeping them interested and stimulated.  I think if your son has been sitting and watching tv and playing video games that he might love the school enviroment in which he gets to be with peers and interact.  I try not to worry about something until I know it is going to be a problem. But most kids really love preschool as it is designed that way.

Will your son listen to stories?  You could read to him and get dialogue going in asking him things about the book as you read it to him.  I go to the library every week and pick out fun books to read and let my kids pick out books as well.  This helps their future reading as well as gets them in the frame of mind to allow them to sit and learn.

I'd try to think in terms of how he will do with other kids.  So when you play a game, take turns with who goes first, take turns with who wins (don't let him always win).  I'd also have him share a toy he is playing with with you by trading another one.  Be like another kid he plays with and set up expectations of how he acts that way.  

Discipline----------  well, I've never spanked my kids and never have needed to.  In the above scenario if he throws a fit about not winning-----------  scoop up the game, it is over and put away.  It is a natural consequence to his behavior.  If he screams/yells---------  tell him you will NOT talk to him until he calms down because you can't understand him.  And then don't.  If he throws something, he loses it.  If he throws a fit about tv--------  tv is off.  You are the mommy and in charge.  You don't have to yell or be angry but you do have to control the situation.  He throws fits to get what he wants because it has been working.  Don't make empty threats.  If you say we will leave if you throw a fit, as soon as he starts--------  give him one warning.  If he continues, pick him up and leave.  I also will put a tantruming child in their room.  They can do it there but I don't want to see it.

I'd work on the physical activity level.  Too much tv and video games is not stimulating to a child and too  much of both are known for behavior problems.  I live in a cold area as well.  I set up an obstacle course, put a mattress on the floor to jump on, play physical games, go to an indoor gym and just run around, go to the Y pool for indoor swim.  But it is important to get this kind of energy outlet into every day for a child.  It's hard, I know, but it will pay off.

So, I hope all goes well when he enters school.  Sometimes parents are surprised that their child acts better in school than in home.  
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470885_tn?1326332637
My oldest son is 3.5 years years old and will be going to junior kindergarten in September.  He's been in daycare full-time since I went back to work when he was 13 months old.  We had him in a home daycare until he was 2.5, then we switched him to a daycare centre where he's in their preschool program.

I agree with specialmom:  a preschool program is wonderful preparation for formal schooling.  Our son is learning so much where he is (they do crafts, read stories, play outside....etc., etc.).  They send a monthly calendar home so that we can reinforce what's being introduced/taught.  It's not just about "play" and "fun", but about making learning fun!  And it's all very routine-based as well - essential at this age, and excellent preparation for formal schooling where kids are expected to follow certain, basic directions (lining up, taking turns, etc.)  I highly recommend such a program, even if it's for a day or two a week - I just regret that we didn't switch our son over sooner: the home based daycare didn't provide enough structure and stimulation in our son's case.
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