Social and Emotional

Kindergarten Readiness – Music for Sharing

This week, as prompted by a recent Michele Borba presentation, our topic is the social skill of sharing. Like any other skill it becomes easier with practice, (given that the situation is fair and reasonable). Children respond to songs better than nagging, so here is a way to remind kids and teach them sharing strategies. Using the tune for Here We Go ‘Round the Mulberry Bush or This Is The Way We Go To School we sing and make up verses as needed:

Here is a way that we can share, we can share, we can share. Here is a way that we can share: We’ll take turns.
Here is a way that we can share, we can share, we can share. Here is a way that we can share: We’ll play together.
Here is a way that we can share, we can share, we can share. Here is a way that we can share: We’ll each have some.

Just about whatever solution seems to be called for can be fit into the song. Now, the song is giving the message, not the grownup, and somehow children seem to be less resistant and more responsive.  Any other suggestions for great sharing songs?

Kindergarten Readiness – May & Michele Borba

Last week, I had the opportunity to hear Michele Borba at a Parents’ Night Out.  Her powerful presentation on Moral Intelligence reminded me that social and emotional skills are an important part of readiness, too. One of the skills that helps children at school is the ability to share. At school there is 1 teacher and two dozen kids. Children really do need to know how to share that lone adult’s attention and time with others. There are limited toys, or at least, a limited number of children that can play with specific toys at a time. Again, sharing and negotiating strategies will help a child. Increased demands are placed on a child at school and coping with all the expectations requires social and emotional support.  This week, I’ll discuss some activities that can help promote the sharing aspect of social and emotional development.  As Michele Borba says,”Sharing is one of the first social skills that kids learn, so it’s also one of the most important.” 

It’s in the Cards

No, not flash cards, although they can be useful, too. These are cards for card games that kids and parents or other family members can play together.

Playing cards also provides an opportunity to learn social skills such as asking politely, saying no acceptably, taking turns, sharing an activity, following rules and more.

Sometimes children win the game, sometimes other people win so children are supported as they learn to deal with competition and disappointment. These are important readiness skills, too, to help a child cope with all the social expectaions at kindergarten.

Go Fish, Concentration or Memory-(there’s not much competition when kids play with me; they beat me!)-even Old Maid, which I never win either, are a few card games.  For younger munchkins use only a few pairs at a time. 

Increase the number of cards as children become more proficient. Most of all, have fun! Ready, set, deal.