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The basics on how to prepare a toddler for future school success

OHMYGOSSIP — I’ve been hearing so much about Common Core. Is there anything I can do now to prepare my toddler for school and these new standards?

Taking an interest in your child—his interests, abilities and personality—is as important as any curriculum. The greatest predictor of school success is a child’s interest in learning.

Although there is much buzz around Common Core standards, the best learning a child can have in early childhood (birth to 8 years) is real life—creating interactive and meaningful experiences for that child. These early years are about growing healthy, inquisitive brains that thirst to learn. The specific content knowledge can come later once these rich experiences are established. These base skills of young children are the core of lifelong learning!

Common Core is a new set of educational standards in K–12 schools. The standards are based on research and designed to even academic expectations from state to state. Wisconsin has adopted Common Core but also uses the Wisconsin Model Early Learning Standards (WMELS) for children from birth to 1st grade. These standards are meant to provide families, professionals and policy makers with a framework on which to help a child build a solid foundation before reaching 1st grade.

WMELS focuses on five areas:
1. Health and physical development considers children’s abilities in caring for their own needs, motor development (large muscle, balance/strength, small muscle) and sensory organization.

2. Social and emotional development includes understanding self and the critical process of self-regulation.

3. Language development and communication covers all the ways we communicate, such as listening and understanding, speaking and early literacy.

4. Approaches to learning has the most individual variation since each child approaches learning differently. This domain talks about curiosity, engagement, persistence, creativity, imagination and diversity of learning.

5. Cognition and general knowledge is the area of exploration, discovery, problem solving, mathematical and scientific thinking.

Educate yourself on the components of good quality early childhood learning. Ask your child care provider if she is familiar with the standards and how she uses them. Play should be the vehicle of your young child’s learning. 

Source: Metro Parent/Jeanne Labana (Jeanne Labana, from Milwaukee, is a PCI certified parent coach and has been an educator for more than 25 years. With 4 grown children and 8 grandchildren, she’s experienced it all!)

 

Look also:
15 Ways you can help your child succeed in school: Better study habits for ADHD kids
OHMYGOSSIP — Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD, similar to hyperkinetic disorder in the ICD-10) is a psychiatric disorder of the neurodevelopmental type in which there are significant problems of attention, hyperactivity, or acting impulsively that are not appropriate for a person’s age.



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