Glendenning Public School

Growing and Learning Together

Telephone02 9832 8555

Preparing for kindergarten

Getting ready for school is an exciting time for both parents and children. It is important not to forget that getting ready for school is not just about buying new shoes and a uniform! It is also about helping your child develop strong foundational skills in literacy and numeracy to help them to be ready to learn to read, write and become successful users of numeracy.    

Speech and language

It is important for young children between 0-6 years old to grow up in an environment where they are exposed to rich spoken language. This means making sure children are hearing a wide vocabulary of spoken words and are often engaging in conversation. Children need an appropriate level of speech and language skills to be able to learn to read and write and communicate successfully in Kindergarten. We recognise that not all children will have these skills as everyone develops at a different pace, so this is intended only as a guide so that starting school may be just a little easier. Talk to the Kindergarten teacher, and together you can support and assist your child's learning.

To assist your child to build speech and language, encourage them to;

  • talk to other people about familiar objects and events
  • answer and ask simple questions
  • make needs known verbally
  • follow simple instructions, concepts, questions and everyday conversation
  • use books for enjoyment or for looking at pictures
  • identify pictures in books, magazines, on television or video
  • join in singing familiar songs


Some tips to help your child to become an active reader and writer;

  • Share a book every day – Children love to be read to aloud. Try choosing books that your child will be interested in and make the experience a fun and enjoyable time for your child. Talk about the story and ask simple questions about what happened, parts they enjoyed, found funny or which characters they liked and why.
  • Hearing sounds and rhymes is an important pre-reading skill - Help your child learn to hear and identify sounds by playing games like eye spy and talking about sounds in words regularly. Talk about words in the book that start with the same sound or words that rhyme. Read and sing familiar nursery rhymes and other books that have lots of rhyming words.   
  • Have fun with letters and sounds – Children need lots of opportunities to practise their phonics knowledge and skills. Make it fun by trying to make their bodies make letter shapes. Try tracing words and letters in sand or painting them with water. Making letters and words with objects like sticks, stones or playdough helps children to recognise letters.
  • Encourage students to experiment with writing - Provide a variety of fun things like pens, pencils, textas, paintbrushes, sticks in the dirt and whiteboards for your child to experiment with drawing and beginning writing. Try making and writing cards and letters to family and friends and writing lists of items with your child.


Help your child learn to love Maths by;

  • Giving children lots of opportunities to count by matching and saying the number words with the correct number of things.
  • Encouraging your child to count common objects like buttons, pegs, steps, eggs in a carton, fruit and vegetables.
  • Playing games such as dominoes, snakes and ladders, card games or board games involving a dice with dot patterns. Change the dice to one showing numbers to help your child read and recognise numbers.
  • Using empty plastic bottles and a ball to make a game of skittles. Encourage your child to tell you how many bottles were knocked down and how many are still standing after bowling.
  • Playing I Spy and describing things by size and shape, e.g.“I spy with my little eye something that is big and shaped like a square.”
  • Reading and talking about stories that use numbers.
  • Singing songs and nursery rhymes that include numbers such as Five Little Ducks.
  • Using mathematical words such as many, a lot, more than, less than, half, quarter, full, empty and positional words such as between, next to, behind, inside, left/right.   

Personal/social skills

Assist your child to build these skills by giving them lots of opportunities to;

  • Use the toilet independently.
  • Say and identify their own name.
  • Adapt to unfamiliar settings and new experiences.
  • Concentrate on a task until it is completed and tidies up afterwards.
  • Play cooperatively with other children - shares and takes turns.
  • Sit still to listen to a story for a few minutes.
  • Participate in imaginative and constructive play.

Physical skills

Some suggestions for useful physical skills are;

  • Use scissors to cut along a straight line or around a simple shape.
  • Put on and take off their own jumpers, coats, shoes and socks independently.
  • Open and close their own lunch boxes and school bags.
  • Enjoy a variety of indoor and outdoor play.

Related content