How to Prepare Your Toddler for Preschool Survival Guide

Prepare Your Toddler for Preschool

Click the link for your free preschool prep role play scenarios. http://eepurl.com/b3BN29

Entering preschool can be a nerve-racking time for toddlers and parents. A common misconception is that the main skills toddlers need to enter preschool are academic. The truth is that educators will tell you the real skills toddlers need to come prepared with are social and emotional. Discover how to prepare your toddler for preschool with this survival guide containing five of the most important skills toddlers need to know.

How to Prepare Your Toddler for Preschool

1. Self-control

Teaching your toddler about self-control will help prepare your toddler for preschool. When entering preschool, toddlers need to be able to keep their hands to themselves, listen to a teacher giving instructions, wait for their turn and more. Parents can help toddlers learn self-control by starting small. Much of the self-control needed for preschool will involve waiting. Waiting for their turn. Waiting in line. Waiting to talk until the teacher is done talking. Parents can begin by giving toddlers small opportunities to wait for activities, items, or toys they want and building up the toddler’s endurance for self-control.

2. Following Directions

Toddlers who learn how to follow directions will have a much easier time in preschool than those who don’t have this skill. Parents can help their child learn how to follow directions by practicing with simple one-step direction instructions. When a child successfully attempts or follows the instructions, parents can praise the child to encourage progress. Another strategy is to play the game Simon Says. To play this game, the parent would say “Simon says…” followed by an action. For example, “Simon says, touch your knees.”

Related post: Toddler Tantrums: 3 Powerful Secrets for Calming Big Emotions

3. Responsibility

Preschoolers will be presented with many opportunities to explore new situations and objects. One skill that will prepare your toddler for preschool is responsibility. Parents can teach toddlers responsibility by completing activities with the child and modeling explicitly how to explore new tools. For example, parents can teach toddlers how to use crayons gently so they don’t break, clean up wrappers up after a snack, or put items away in an organized way. Toddlers will need to be taught specifically how to take care of items in a responsible way.

getting ready for preschool

4. Expressing Emotions & Conflict Resolution

Preschool for many toddlers will be an opportunity to be surrounded by many peers. With this opportunity will come the need to talk about emotions, both positive and negative. Preschoolers will be faced with situations in which they need to solve conflicts with peers. One great way parents can practice expressing different emotions and conflict resolution is through role playing scenarios with their toddler. In each role play, toddlers will have the opportunity to practice problem-solving of classroom situations or reinforcing positive social skills. Click here to get your scenarios and emotion cards to practice with your toddler.

5. Discussing Ideas

Toddlers need to learn how to discuss academic ideas. Parents help their toddler practice this skill by asking open-ended questions about different subjects. For example, after reading a book, a parent can ask “What did this story make you think about?” Another example is when going to a walk, the parent can ask, “What do you see, hear, or smell?”

Entering preschool can be a nerve-racking time for toddlers and parents. A common misconception is that the main skills toddlers need to enter preschool are academic. The truth is that educators will tell you the real skills toddlers need to come prepared with are social and emotional. Click here to discover how to prepare your toddler for preschool with this survival guide containing five of the most important skills toddlers need to know. Includes free role play scenarios for emotional and social skill practice.

Reviewing the 5 Important Skills to Prepare Your Toddler for Preschool

Parents can help toddlers have a smooth transition into preschool by practicing the following skills with them:

1. Self-control

2. Following Directions

3. Responsibility

4. Expressing Emotions & Conflict Resolution

5. Discussing Ideas

How do you plan to prepare your toddler for preschool?

Entering preschool can be a nerve-racking time for toddlers and parents. A common misconception is that the main skills toddlers need to enter preschool are academic. The truth is that educators will tell you the real skills toddlers need to come prepared with are social and emotional. Click here to discover how to prepare your toddler for preschool with this survival guide containing five of the most important skills toddlers need to know. Includes free role play scenarios for emotional and social skill practice.

P.S. If you enjoyed this piece, you may also like How to Get Your Toddler to Bed With No Excuses. Toddlers are smart little humans. By the time children are two-years-old, many have figured out exactly what to do or say to stay awake at bedtime. Parents of toddlers know that they are notorious for creating a plethora of excuses to stay up. But at the end of a long day, parents need some time to recharge and rest. Become a bedtime guru today and get your toddler to bed with no excuses.

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17 comments

  1. I love this! I seem like every single post I see deals with the academics of preschool. Which, don’t get me wrong – my blog’s focus is on fun messy, fun active academic preschool activities – but, very few of them concentrate on non-academics. I was sitting here in my living room floor the other night putting together some inclusion activities for my L1 18mo old to play WITH my 3 year old, and I started contemplating how I can teach her to write her name. She spells it. She recognizes it. But, I started panicking she can’t write it. WHAT?!!?!? WHY would I expect my 3 year old to WRITE her name? WHYYY?

    Thank GOD she is well-rounded. But IDK why she is. Lucky parenting I guess. ‘Cause i haven’t spent time researching how to teach her the things here. I’m told she knows them well. That’s awesome. But now that I’m aware, I can help my other two better and not rely on luck. THANK YOU for your psots like this!

    • Thank you for sharing Kaitlyn! It sounds like you have two lovely little ones. We will have to swap some preschool resources. 🙂

  2. I love that your suggested skills focus on emotional and social skills rather than teaching the ABCs. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for academics, but they will learn the curriculum so much better if the skills you discuss are in place. I’ve been working really hard with my little guys to help them become contributors and problem-solvers (and we seriously struggle some days), but I think it’s so important. Thanks for this!

    • As a former educator, I am a huge advocate for teaching academic skills too, so I am glad you mentioned that. I love that you are working with your boys on contributing and problem-solving. Go mom!

  3. Awesome article! I really like how you pointed out self control as well as responsibility. Those two alone can really vary from one toddler to the next and to focus on those skills would be super beneficial before the big day.

    • Thank, Dani. I agree, these two are so important and depending on the child can come naturally or can be a big challenge.

  4. Great post! Luckily for us pre-school is a long way off, gotta actually have this baby first haha but I completely agree that these are all necessary and important things for toddlers to learn as they form the foundations for interactions for the rest of their lives.

  5. This is excellent! We struggle with the first one the most. Our three and a half year old wants “it” now and wants to talk “right now” and just has a very hard time waiting and having any self control.

  6. Awesome advice! I wholeheartedly agree with all your tips. It’s sad that many parents I’ve met focus more on academics than these important skills their children will need for the rest of their lives. Great article!!!

    Thanks for joining our party! #RookieParents

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