Activities and exercises you can try at home with your child
These activities and exercises will help your child as they progress through Pre-School and will make them feel more confident when they move on to Lower School.
They can be attempted at any time in the run up to your child starting school. It is a good idea to keep revisiting them particularly any that prove to be challenging. Remember these are all good
fun and the whole family can get involved, so perhaps pass this sheet on to any other family members who care for your child.
- Sing favourite number rhymes together, i.e. ‘Five little monkeys’, ‘Ten fat sausages’. Count on fingers to show how many.
- Practise counting to ten using fingers and objects, or in everyday situations, e.g. how many cars can you see in the car park, how many apples are in the fruit bowl?
- Play with coins or toy money, to help identify shapes and numbers. You can practise counting and number recognition. Whenever possible point out numbers, either as figures or written in full.
Perhaps create a wall chart together listing numbers to ten.
- Help your child to practise writing their name. You can use paints, pencils, crayons or chalks. You could purchase some fridge magnets, sets with numbers and lower case letters are widely
available. If this exercise is difficult at first, work on it letter by letter and spend time working on recognition of the first letter and then move on until the whole name can be confidently
- Begin to practise letter sounds, e.g. a as in apple. Try not to use the letter names, not ‘A as in A B C’. Use ‘playdoh’, ‘furry pipe cleaners’ or modelling clay to try and create these
- Share books together at home and talk about the pictures. Help your child to begin to recognise any familiar words.
- Look around your home and find different shapes. Can your child recognise and name a square, rectangle, triangle and circle. Use ‘playdoh’, ‘furry pipe cleaners’ or modelling clay to try and
create these shapes.
- Make models using ‘junk’, e.g. bits of cardboard, egg boxes, cardboard tubes from inside of kitchen or toilet paper, tin foil. Practise cutting and sticking.
- Is your child able to hold and use scissors correctly? If your child is left handed, try and buy some left handed scissors. Help them to cut paper safely and creatively!
- Practising fine motor skills, e.g. threading beads or buttons on to string, tying bows and using zips.
- Talk about the days of the week and look at calendars together.
- Make collections of objects of the same colour. Perhaps you could sort some coloured building blocks into groups, e.g. red blocks, blue blocks. Work on colour recognition and then count up
- Practise colouring. Can your child stay within the lines? Character workbooks are a good source of creative materials for practising tracing or copying numbers, letters and colouring.
- Discuss the importance of washing hands and keeping clean. Try and work towards the point where your child can use the toilet unaided.
- Help your child to practise getting dressed and undressed. Can your child put on their own shoes with a little help? Can they put on their own coat? Try and encourage their independence.
- Is your child able to share happily and take turns? Practise this at home with any friends and siblings.
- Talk about feelings. Discuss what things make us feel happy and sad.
- Encourage your child to be as independent as possible. Children who can hang up their own things and cope with dressing/undressing find it easier to settle into school.