abcs for literacy

What is a Kindergarten Readiness Test?

It is a basic assessment test used in schools to help determine a child’s readiness for kindergarten. It tests several broad skills that impact learning. Nationwide many schools use the standardized Brigance Kindergarten Readiness Test. Parents can practice the skills tested to help ready your child for school. Your child is NOT expected to know all these skills, like being able to name all alphabet letters, but the assessment helps determine how ready your child is for kindergarten and provides helpful information to the teacher and parent. Many children have not scored well on kindergarten readiness tests because parents are not aware of what skills to teach. Learn more about the Brigance Kindergarten Readiness Test below. Other kindergarten readiness tests assess similar skills.

Note:  The skills tested progress from easier to more difficult left to right.

1) Basic info: First name, full name, age, birthday (mo. & day), address (street), telephone #

2) Colors – 10: (identifies and names) red  blue  green  yellow  orange  purple  brown  black  pink  gray 

3) Alphabet UC or LC: recognize and name letter  (a good start is to learn letters in first & last name)

4) Rote Counting to 30: (practice 1-10   1-20   1-30) - to 10 is a good start

5) Numeral Comprehension: can match quantity to number to 10 items (a good start is to match to 4)

6) Number Readiness- joins groups of objects to 4 or higher

7) Concepts of Print: can child- hold book properly, point to a letter, point to a word

8) Speech: (is speech understandable, can child speak in a complete sentence of at least 5 words)

9) Gross Motor: (stand on one foot, stands on one foot with eyes closed, walks backwards 5 steps)

10) Visual Motor- COPIES WHEN SHOWN A PICTURE OF:  X    circle     square     triangle     diamond

11) Identifies Body Parts:  names body part pointed indicated- head, wrist, ankle, knee….

12) Draws a Person- including & can identify: head, trunk, legs, arms, mouth, nose, eyes…

abcsforliteracy.com educator suggestions help teach a child these skills easily:

1) Basic info: First name, full name, age, birthday (mo. & day), address (street), telephone #
Suggestions:  Encourage your child to speak up and say their name clearly i.e.  say “Now, tell me again your beautiful name.” or “OK, tell me your full name & what part is like mine.” Practice these facts while on short trips in the car and when you arrive home say your address with your child until they can state it independently. Whenever out, have your child practice saying your home phone number with you before you dial it to call home. 

2) Colors – 10:  red   blue   green   yellow   orange   purple   brown  black   pink   gray 
Suggestions:  Practice matching & naming the crayon colors in 2 basic 8-color crayon boxes & then add the 2 additional colors. Also match M&Ms or Skittles into color groups & name color to eat.

3) Alphabet UC or LC: recognize and name letter  and Can Print Name: first     last
Suggestions:  A good start is to learn the letters in first name then last name.  A Name Puzzle & Name Song makes learning the letters in a child’s name easy.  See abcsforliteracy.com “Literacy Tips” or “Lessons” page for guidance.  Reading alphabet books like Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (By Archambault &Martin) is a very effective teaching tool. Practice tracing then writing name.

4) Rote Counting to 30: (practice 1-10  11-20  20-30)  
Suggestions:  Rote counting 10 is a good start & counting with fingers is even better, then practice to 20 (with fingers & toes of child or your & child’s fingers), then work to 30.

5) Numeral Comprehension: can match quantity to number to 10 items (a good start is to match to 4)
Suggestions:  This skill takes much practice.  Remember to practice 0- nothing, nada, don’t have a thing… Practice with fingers can be done anywhere if the parent carries 0-10 number cards around.  Then practice with objects like candy, marbles, or beans.  Practice placing 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 objects on the ends (or the ends and curve for 5) of the corresponding number.

6) Number Readiness- joins groups of objects to 10  (a good start is 4)
Suggestions: Get out the candy and toys!  Practice color identification and grouping objects at the same time.  M&M’s and Skittles work well.  Start with the lower numbers 1-4.  Tell your child what them to count all the objects when you put them together.  For example, say “If I have 2 red M&M’s and you give me a green M&M, how many do I have in my group all together?”  or say “If you give me 2 brown M&M’s and then you give me 2 yellow M&M’s, how many do I have in my group all together?”  Work up until you can say “Here are 3 blocks and I add 1 block to it, how many blocks do I have?”  and your child can answer easily.  The skill is to be able count objects NOT ADD.  Then move on to larger groups totaling 5-10.

7) Concepts of Print: can child- hold book properly, point to a letter, point to a word
Suggestions:  Read a book at least nightly to your child. This is likely the single best preparation you can do with your child for school. Have your child practice holding the book properly and point to a letter (start with the letter a or the first letter in your child’s name) and point to a word (talk about how letters go together to make words, your child’s name is a good example, and how some words like a and I have only 1 letter) as the book is read. Read many times repetitive books like Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? (By Carle & Martin). Point out letters and simple words repeated in the book: I, see, a, me.  Track the words with your finger as you read the book to your child to illustrate how the print is read left to right. Then read it again!

8) Speech: (is speech understandable, can child speak in a complete sentence of at least 5 words)
Suggestions: Help your child practice speaking in a complete sentence, for example, if you ask your child how they feel and the response is “tired” say “Let’s say that in a sentence please like ‘I am very tired today.’  or ‘I am tired today because I played outside.’ Now you try.”

9) Gross Motor: (stand on one foot, stands on one foot with eyes closed, walks backwards 5 steps)
Suggestions:  Play hop-scotch with your child: eyes open, then later eyes closed, and finally, backwards. Play using the curve as a balance-beam.

10) Visual Motor- COPIES WHEN SHOWN A PICTURE OF:  X    circle    square    triangle   diamond
Suggestions:  Practice drawing shapes with your child and have them practice writing their name as letters have shapes.

11) Identifies Body Parts:  names body part pointed indicated- head, wrist, ankle, knee….
Suggestions:  Get a Hasbro Operation game and play it with your child. Or sing “Dem Bones” to & with your child. It goes “the hip bone is connected to the thigh bone, the thigh bone is connected to the knee bone, the knee bone is connected to the shin bone”…ok, and doctors don’t get technical yet (see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e54m6XOpRgU). Or just play “Where is your ---- game” start out pointing to your knee or neck or wrist or whatever you name and have your child point to their corresponding body part.  Work up until you can say “Where is your ----“ and the child can simply point to that body part.

12) Draws a Person- including & can identify: head, trunk, legs, arms, mouth, nose, eyes
Suggestions:  Show your child how to draw a simple stick person with the head, trunk, legs, and arms and as time goes by keep including more and more detail like the mouth, nose, eyes, neck, hair….

Copyright 2012 abcsforliteracy.com
Note: For more information Google "Brigance Kindergarten Readiness Test". It is a standardized test only appropriate for certain ages. Don’t teach to the test, but rather practice the important skills tested.
And don’t worry, your child will learn so much in kindergarten!

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Want a few more educator suggestions:

Young children learn best through

    1. Read children’s books to your child nightly, and when you child says “Read it again.” well, read it again: this really promotes learning. Make certain to select some repetitive children’s books to make it easier for your child to learn some letters and words in the book.  Use a little drama to make reading a book a child’s adventure.

 abcsforliteracy.com educator Picks for a Child’s Home Library:

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?  (Carle & Martin):
            Teaches colors and teaches sight words: I, a, me, do, you, at, see.

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (Archambault & Martin)
            Teaches lower case alphabet and upper case alphabet.

Bark, George (Feiffer)
            Easily adds fun drama and teaches sight words: no, go, the, and, a, said, of.
 
Hop on Pop (Suess)
            Teaches rhyming which helps a child pay attention to the sounds in a word.

 

2. Surround your child with the alphabet.

* A Melissa & Doug Upper & Lower Case Alphabet Puzzle www.melissaanddoug.com is great because it helps a child learn both cases. This puzzle can be used to: sing the alphabet and point to the letters in the puzzle to learn letters, the wooden letters can be used to make a child’s name or sight words (for example: the, me, we, go, no), children can sequence upper case letters or lower case letters with the wooden letters, and later children can sort the wooden letters into cases. 
  
*Buy alphabet magnets for the refrigerator.  Practice finding the first letter in your child’s name and later practice making first or last name and sight words. Or mix and then put the alphabet magnets in order looking at another alphabet for help.

* Alphabet Books teach letters with words that start with the letter sound.  Read your child children’s books!  Children’s books teach on many levels: syntax, fluency, vocabulary, letter awareness, colors, improves memory, word awareness, and so much more…Alphabet books help a child learn that the alphabet  looks a certain way and sounds a certain way.

 

    3. Make numbers part of everyday life.

    *Teach your child to count to 20 using their fingers and toes, later go on to 40 with your fingers & toes too!

    *Help your child count out objects like Cheerios, slices of apple, M&Ms… to 10 & higher later.

    * A Learn to Count Puzzle from Sensational Beginnings
    www.sb-kids.com
    teaches children to match the quantity to number- a very important skill and helps develop fine motor skills.

 

    4. Practice matching and naming colors everywhere.

* shopping for fruit or vegetables: “Will you pick out 4 green apples?”, “Let’s get a package of red strawberries.”

*  shopping for clothes: “Do you want blue jeans or black jeans?”

*  deciding what to wear each day: “Please find 2 brown socks.”

5. Practice making playdough letters and numbers. 

This improves fine motor skills, teaches about letter shape or number shape, and familiarizes the child to letters & numbers.

P. Hamm, Founder & Educator

Educators helping children ages 3-7 learn how to read & write easily