Kindergarten readiness

Kindergarten should be an exciting and rewarding experience for the children and their parents. There is no perfect checklist to determine if your child is ready for kindergarten. The following list is intended to give you an idea of the skills a child should have mastered in order to receive the greatest benefit from their kindergarten experience. Remember, age is only one factor in determining kindergarten readiness. Social, emotional, cognitive and physical development should be taken into account. Kindergarten screening is just one tool we use to get to know your child and his/her readiness for kindergarten. If you have questions, please feel free to visit with the kindergarten teachers.

Your kindergarten-ready child should be able to:


Social and Emotional Development


  • Follow two-step directions
  • Use words instead of being physical when angry or frustrated
  • Ask for help when necessary
  • Pay attention for short periods of time to adult-directed tasks
  • Listen to stories without interrupting
  • Stay with activity to completion
  • Attempt new tasks knowing it's okay to make mistakes
  • Initiate and sustain appropriate play with other children
  • Begin to control him/herself
  • Respect the rights, property and feelings of others
  • Dress him/herself (buttons shirts, pants, coats and zips zippers)
  • Manage bathroom needs independently
  • Separate from parents for extended periods of time without being upset



Retrieving paper

Motor Skills

Retrieving paper

  • Hold a pencil, crayon or marker properly
  • Hold scissors correctly
  • Put together a 10-12 piece puzzle
  • Try to write and/or draw
  • Run, jump and skip
  • Walk backwards
  • Ride a tricycle


Language Skills

  • Speak in complete sentences of 5-6 words

  • Use descriptive language

  • Sing and/or recite nursery rhymes

  • Talk about everyday experiences

  • Ask questions

  • Enjoy having books read to him/her

  • Verbally and appropriately respond to a topic

  • Pretend, create, and make-up stories and songs

  • Tell or retell stories

  • Express his/her ideas so others can understand him/her



Dog clip art

Academic Skills

  • Recognize and identify 5 colors

  • Identify some alphabet letters

  • Identify own first name in writing

  • Attempt to print own first name

  • Count to 10

  • Identify some numerals

  • Correctly count at least 3 objects

  • Know his/her body parts (head, shoulders, knees, elbow, etc.)

  • Draw a picture of him/herself including head, body, arms, and legs

  • Look at pictures and talk about what he/she sees or tell a story about the pictures

  • Use words like bigger, smaller, heaviest, etc. to show comparison

  • Understand concepts such as in/out, under/over, on/off, front/back

Dog clip art


puppy runningpuppy running


What Can I Do To Help My Child Get Ready For School?

  • Read with your child daily! Click here.

  • Play listening games or tell stories to each other that foster listening.

  • Play games that practice counting, letter and sound recognition, colors, taking turns and being a good sport whether winning or losing.

  • Set up a place for your child to draw, color, cut, create art projects, practice writing, etc.

  • Allow your child to help choose his/her clothes to wear for school the next day.

  • Talk about the weather and what type of clothing should be worn.

  • Teach your child to tie shoes. We do not have time to teach this skill in school.

  • Help your child become more independent with self-help skills. Guide them to learn to dress, bathe, brush teeth, clean-up, etc. Please do not do everything for them. Five year olds are very proud of being able to do these types of things.

  • Practice knowing first and last name, birthday, phone number, address, parents' names and emergency phone numbers.