January 17, 2006
PLANNING FOR KINDERGARTEN SUCCESS
On January 20, Warren County Community Services Head Start will host an annual Transition Planning Luncheon at Der Dutchman restaurant in Waynesville. The luncheon is attended by kindergarten teachers, principals, preschool teachers, speech therapists, special education coordinators, and parents. These participants get together each year to plan activities that will help preschool children make a successful transition into kindergarten.
Lisa Cayard, Head Start Director noted, “The move from preschool to kindergarten is the first of many transitions in a child’s education, and it represents a big step for parents as well as for children. Parents often have some anxiety about leaving the family-like atmosphere of Head Start or preschool, and sending their five-year-old into the big new world of elementary school, with different routines and expectations.”
The Head Start program has been working closely with other preschools and the eight school districts and in Warren County to support children and their parents in making this important transition. The Head Start curriculum is aligned with the Ohio Early Learning Content Standards to make sure that their preschool experiences will prepare them for a successful entry into kindergarten. Teachers check their development throughout the year in early literacy and language skills, science and early math skills, social skills, and physical development. According to Cayard, “These child outcome measures are an important way to share each child’s developmental progress with parents and kindergarten teachers, and they also provide striking evidence of the effectiveness of the Head Start program.”
Transition activities being planned include field trips for children and parents to visit kindergarten classrooms, making scrapbooks of the children’s work to send to kindergarten teachers, and providing kindergarten registration and screening at the Head Start centers. There will be opportunities for parents to meet with kindergarten teachers to learn how they can help their children get ready for school. Parents and teachers will work with children to prepare them with the skills they will need to be successful in kindergarten, such as printing their names, counting, naming colors, and cutting with scissors.
Lisa Cayard, Head Start Director
Warren County Community Services, Inc.
570 North State Route 741
Lebanon, Ohio 45036
Phone: (513) 695-2213