Countdown to Kindergarten
We are excited that you will soon be joining the EPS family. Stayed tuned throughout the year for helpful tips, resources, and advice from kindergarten experts at all of our elementary schools that will ease your child’s transition into kindergarten.
Ask an Educator: EPS Educators Offer their Advice
To ensure success in kindergarten, we count on parents to partner with us throughout the school year. By creating open lines of communication, fostering good habits at home, and staying up-to-date, we can work together to provide the best possible experience for your child this year.
The beginning of the school year may be overwhelming for some kids, and it can also be overwhelming for parents. We understand! Each Edina elementary school varies slightly, but here are some common things to do and look for.
The Edina kindergarten teachers are already looking forward and planning for our new crop of kindergarteners in the fall! Social and emotional development is one of the most important indicators of success in kindergarten. The more you can do to prepare your pre-kindergartener with these skills, the easier the transition to school will be.
In a kindergarten classroom, technology is intentional, supervised, and it provides an opportunity to build school-to-home connections. We are conscious of concerns about screen time and make sure to use technology with purpose and with moderation.
Starting kindergarten is a big step in a child’s life. One of the biggest factors of a child being ready for kindergarten is his or her social and emotional skill set.
Advice from Community: Parents, Students, etc.
Our child took the bus to school his first day. Just prior to stepping on the bus our son turned around and told us he would be OK. Naturally, this made my wife cry, and I had a few internal tears as well.
As a parent, I knew my daughter was ready for the next challenge, so I was excited for her, but also sad. Starting kindergarten marked the end of her childhood season. I was nervous about all the new responsibilities she would have. Would she remember her pin, bus number, or bus stop? Would she be able to find friends to play with?
EPS parent, Catalina, credits Blanca Diaz De Leon, Spanish-speaking cultural liaison, for helping her get connected at EPS and making the transition less difficult. Catalina shared her experience to encourage current Pre-K parents to contact the cultural liaisons when they need assistance or have questions.
There are many parents who struggle with the decision of when to send their child with a summer birthday to kindergarten. Countryside parents, Sonika and Atul faced this decision with their daughter last year. Sonika and Atul shared how they navigated their decision to help current PreK parents who are faced with a similar dilemma.
On the Shelf – Recommended reads by EPS media specialists
by Alison McGhee illustrated by Harry Bliss Year Published: 2006
It's just ten days before kindergarten, and this little girl has heard all there is to know--from a first grader--about what it's going to be like. You can't bring your cat, you can't bring a stuffed animal, and the number one rule? You can't ask anyone for help. Ever. So what do you do when your shoes come untied, if you're the only one in the class who doesn't know how to tie them up again? Told with gentle humor by Alison McGhee and brought to exuberant life by New Yorker cartoonist Harry Bliss, this lighthearted take on pre-kindergarten anxiety will bring a smile to the face of every child--and parent--having first-day jitters.
by Kevin Henkes Year Published: 2010
Wemberly worried about spilling her juice, about shrinking in the bathtub, even about snakes in the radiator. She worried morning, noon, and night. "Worry, worry, worry," her family said. "Too much worry." And Wemberly worried about one thing most of all: her first day of school. But when she meets a fellow worrywart in her class, Wemberly realizes that school is too much fun to waste time worrying!
by Maryann Cocca-Leffler Year Published: 2007
On the first day of school, Miss Lucinda asks the students to share their special talents. Francesca is a star soccer player, Matthew can catch huge fish with his grandpa, and Candace is an excellent artist. It seems that everyone has something to share. But Jack is worried. He doesn't have any talent at all . . . or so he thinks.
Acrylic paintings that pop with energy and charm make this story by veteran author and illustrator Maryann Cocca-Leffler the perfect boost for any child who questions his or her abilities.
by Adam Rex, illustrated by Christian Robinson Year Published: 2016
It's the first day of school at Frederick Douglass Elementary and everyone's just a little bit nervous, especially the school itself. What will the children do once they come? Will they like the school? Will they be nice to him?
The school has a rough start, but as the day goes on, he soon recovers when he sees that he's not the only one going through first-day jitters.
Past Book Recommendations
Summer Reading Resources by Cornelia Elementary Media Specialist, Sherron Gaughan
- Brightly Summer Reading Lists - Brightly organizes age-specific summer reading lists.
- Reading Rockets Summer Booklists - Reading Rockets compiles an annual summer reading guide arranged by age and reading level.
- Starfall - Starfall allows kids to enhance word recognition, explore letters and sounds while improving reading comprehension and fluency.
Normandale Elementary Media Specialist, Lynnea West recommends these books for making connections in kindergarten
- Give Me Back My Book! by Travis Foster and Ethan Long
- We Don't Eat Our Classmates Ryan T. Higgins
Countryside Elementary Media Specialist, Kathy Koepp recommended these books to help kids with kindergarten expectations.
- My Kindergarten by Rosemary Wells
- Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten by Joseph Slate and Ashley Wolff
- Look out Kindergarten, Here I come by Nancy Carlson
- Max Goes to School by Adria F Klein and illustrated by Mernie Gallagher-Cole
South Asian Families
Countdown to Kindergarten Archive