Kindergarten Readiness – Pack Imagination on Vacation

The news today announced the death of Hiram Brown, a radio drama legend. He called radio ” the theater of the mind” and talked about ” the magic is the imagination”. One of the most powerful tools that kids have is their imagination. Today, reflecting on his insights, here are some ways to use children’s imagination within the context of vacation.

  • Ask your child to imagine what might happen if the car grew wings. Where would you go? What would you see?
  • Maybe, the airplane flies into outer space and lands on a strange planet. What happens there?
  • Your suitcase can talk. What would it say? Can it talk language of anywhere you go?
  • The map unfolds and unfolds and unfolds and it’s a magic carpet.
  • The bed in the hotel is covering the entrance to a secret staircase that goes all the way to ….
  • As you read a book, you can walk right into the pages. What does it look like inside a book?

Make sure you take your imagination on your vacation. You can travel the world and beyond with imagination.

Kindergarten Readiness – Pack a Book

This month the blog topic is readiness ideas for vacation. Does your child have a special interest in a particular topic? Dinosaurs, cars, trucks, trains, boats, farm animals, different countries, fish, whales, knights, castles, ballerinas, cats, dogs, bugs, and more are some of the more common ones but I’m always amazed at the variety and scope of kids interests.

vacation booksWhatever your child enjoys, a couple of new books are a fairly light item to include in a backpack or suitcase. You may want to save them for a surprise or let your child pick them out for later. While kids books can be more expensive than adult ones, they can often be found at used book stores for very affordable prices. Exposure to lots of books and stories promotes many skills for both learning to read and learning through listening.

Books are ideal for vacations–usually. We discovered one drawback, though, when camping. Bedtime books and flashlights are not easy to manage in tent.  Have a few stories that you can tell as a back-up!
What stories might you know of that are great for vacations?

Kindergarten Readiness – Vacation Songs

Singing is another terrific way to help kids learn. Not only do they practice musical skills but also important ones for learning vocabulary,  rhythm, word order and language patterns, but it also strengthens their auditory memory and provides good listening practice. There are some fabulous children’s entertainers with simple and catchy songs but plain, ordinary, everyday singing with parents and caregivers can be done anytime, anywhere and on any subject. One trick is to piggy-back new words onto old tunes. Following are two examples.

Row, row, row your boat, gently down the stream. Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream.
Drive, drive, drive your car, gently down the street. Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a treat.
Fly, fly, fly your plane gently in the sky. Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life’s too fun to cry.

Tune: She’ll be coming ’round the mountain. Words by Daylene

We’ll be going on vacation in the car, honk, honk.
We’ll be going on vacation in a plane, zoom, zoom.
We’ll be going an vacation in a train, chug, chug.
We’ll be going on vacation in a boat, toot, toot.

It’s okay to use the word truck in these songs, although it is best to avoid that mode of transportation for some others. Phew. The ever-popular “Wheels on the bus” can be the wheels on the car with almost endless verses for another song. Any other possibilities for cartunes?

Kindergarten Readiness – Vacation Numbers

Pardon the pun, but practicing numbers on a vacation just adds to the fun. No matter the age of your little ones, just pointing out all the places where there are numbers helps kids learn how important numbers are. Road numbers, prices on signs, hotel room doors, addresses, elevators, clocks, money and menus are just a few … Continue reading Kindergarten Readiness – Vacation Numbers

Kindergarten Readiness – Vacation List

Before heading off on the the family holiday, there are some super fun aspects just in the planning. Activity #1, counting down the days, incorporated math skills. #2, looking at photos and reading about where you are going links meaning and print. #3 tip is making a list. Talking about what you might need and … Continue reading Kindergarten Readiness – Vacation List

Kindergarten Readiness – Memorial Day

Making Memorial Day meaningful for kids can be challenging. Especially for little children. They are too young to understand the concepts of military service and sacrifice. They can and will remember though what we, the adults, do to observe this day. It’s possible to create your own commemoration that is meaningful for your family and can be woven into … Continue reading Kindergarten Readiness – Memorial Day

Kindergarten Readiness – Memory by Touch

I’ll start today’s blog with a quick confession. I love mystery stories and avoid being bookless. Bookless does not mean I haven’t quite a collection, just that I don’t have one to read next. One that I really enjoyed was Memory Book by Howard Engel. A detective suffers a brain injury and significant memory loss. … Continue reading Kindergarten Readiness – Memory by Touch

Auditory Memory Activity #1

No, this isn’t the 99th activity for auditory memory enhancement and it’s not a typo. It’s a humorous way to introduce today’s blog topic–how to do a super quick check of your child’s auditory memory. Auditory memory is a fundamental skill for learning. And for relationships. Just think of how frustrating it is when a friend … Continue reading Auditory Memory Activity #1