There is lots of information out there about supporting your child’s learning at home. There are some particular guidelines which we endorse and can be found here. But we have some suggestions of our own.
Here are our top 5 tips on what parents can do to support their child during their pre-school stage and beyond:
i) Buy an Alphabet Frieze. Ensure it is lower case, and place it somewhere you and your child have regular access to. Point to random letters and encourage your child to practice the letter sound.
ii) Practice the correct way to hold a pencil. Might sound basic, but it is important. The ‘tripod grasp’ is what you want to focus on.
iii) Counting games. Use your environment to get your child to recognise numbers. They are everywhere: doors, cars, road signs, buses, magazines, etc. Ask your child to count how many red cars they see parked outside, plates set at the table, dolls in the bedroom, marbles in a bag, etc.
iv) Talk about shapes. The same principle applies. Use your environment and help your child identify basic shapes such as squares, rectangles, circles and triangles. You can then move on to 3-D shapes such as cubes, cones and cylinders. Talk about the difference between the shapes and ask them to pick out some different 3-D shapes they see at home.
v) Read! Possibly the most important activity you can do with your child. Try and read with them as much as you can. Think about creating talking points during a reading session: ask your child to look at the pictures and tell you what they think the story is about. Lots of books for pre-schoolers have repetition. Point to any repeated words whilst reading them – your child will soon learn to recognise them.
Don’t forget all the above is supposed to be FUN, so make sure you enjoy yourselves whilst doing it!