I’m discovering that hockey jerseys can be a really useful kindergarten readiness tool! Some kids not only use them to learn numbers but the sweaters can also be used for learning colors. Let’s see, the Devils and Red Wings are red; green and blue for the Canucks, Dallas Stars are green, the Bruins have some yellow, the Flyers some orange, the Kings some purple and lots of teams have black and white. Using hockey sweaters to practice colors would not have occurred to me but it can be very appealing for some kids.
Colors are an abstract concept. They have no shape or size; they are not a thing. We can’t feel a color or go to the store and buy it. Many different objects share a color: an apple, a car, a shirt or a cut on a finger can all be red. In order for children to learn a color they need to see lots of things that are that color and lots that aren’t. Plus, there are zillions of variations of each one. Colors are not easy to learn. Many readiness for kindergarten evaluations ask if kids know colors because it is a quick way of checking the level of learning. Kids who are struggling with colors may be struggling with other concepts, too.
The score for hockey and kindergarten readiness is up to 2. Can you suggest some more ways that hockey can be used for learning?
With the start of the finals for the Stanley Cup, hockey is a topic of discussion in many places–but preschool, too? Apparently! I will admit I hadn’t thought of hockey as learning tool for little ones but this parent said that her son learned numbers from hockey jerseys!
Well, kids learn in lots of different ways. In this case, the child was very motivated from something in his experience and built his learning on that. To help your little one with kindergarten readiness use whatever is important in the child’s world. Readiness for kindergarten does not come from workbooks and flashcards but from ordinary, everyday living. Score another one for kindergarten readiness!
Because the Royal Wedding is happening on a school night, I won’t be able to stay up and watch. But I have been thinking about how this much-publicized event could relate to readiness for kindergarten. Perhaps, it’s the way that so many people come together to celebrate; that’s learning about social behaviors. Maybe it’s all the traditions that make us part of a larger group. One possible activity could be dressing up or reading stories about princes and princesses. Then I thought of something really fun that has all kinds of kindergarten readiness learning: a tea party.
Children as young as 2, perhaps even earlier, love to imagine and play pretend. A tea party has lots of scope for imagining, even if the food served is quite real. Teddy bears can be guests or grown-ups or friends might be invited. Older children can color and draw invitations. Planning a menu means practicing organizing and other skills. There’s all kinds of language play and social interaction. Kids practice math as they count out, add and subtract the plates and cups, and solve other problems of how many. Kids explore different behaviors and other roles. Best of all, a tea party is royally fun. How do you take your tea?
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