Making Sure Your Little Learner is Where He Should Be
Posted June 14, 2010on:
When is your child ready for kindergarten? It’s hard to gauge his progress on the learning scale. Here are a few milestones to track to make sure your little learner is where he should be.
By the time your child is 4, you’ll notice him doing more things on his own. Yes, your baby is growing up fast! Give him encouragement and help him along the way to improve these simple skills. Some main things your child should be able to do without much help include…
Holding silverware like an adult
At 4 years old, your child should be comfortable using forks and spoons. Let him practice with knives (under your careful supervision) and teach him table manners. These things may seem simple to you, but the hand-eye coordination and motor skills he’s learning are important to his development!
Getting dressed and undressed
Your child should be able to get dressed and undressed without many issues. You may notice that undoing buttons and snaps comes easier to him than fastening them. This is normal! Help him understand that patience is key – and if he gets frustrated easily, give him time to learn. He’ll get the hang of it eventually.
Brushing his teeth
This skill is a little harder to learn. Help your child brush his teeth by watching him carefully. Make sure he doesn’t swallow too much toothpaste, and be sure that he’s being thorough with his cleanings! Help him as much as you can, but give him his independence, too.
Using the toilet
While most kids are potty-trained by the time they’re 3, some may not be ready until they’re closer to 4 years old. By the time your child is 4, he’ll want to use the potty by himself both at home and away from home. While most little boys learn to use the bathroom sitting down, by age 4 they will most likely want to try standing up. Your 4 year old should also have the control to stay potty free at night. If he’s not, help him to develop this ability!
Cleaning up after himself
Four year olds should be able to take care of their own messes. Start by making them make their beds in the morning after they wake up, and picking up their toys when they are done playing with them. Have them help you with your own simple chores around the house. Let him see that you have to do it too, so he doesn’t feel like he’s being punished by having to clean! Remember… having the ability to do something and wanting to do something are two very different things. Be patient when teaching them this skill. It may be frustrating to them in the beginning, but they’ll get used to it soon!
Remember to always encourage your children in their daily learning. Don’t let yourself get discouraged if your 4 year old isn’t yet capable of these things. It will come in time, and all children develop at different paces. Encourage your children and praise them when they do something well. Offer them help and guidance when they are struggling. They’ll get it eventually!