Entering Pre-Kindergarten I

Pre-Kindergarten I students will need the following items when school begins:
  • Regular-size backpack (large enough to hold a regular size folder)
  • Water bottle (to be sent home each afternoon)
  • Healthy snack (daily)
  • Large Ziploc-style bag containing a weather appropriate change of clothes, including socks and shoes.
  • All items coming to school to be clearly labeled with your child’s name, including coats, water bottle and snack containers, backpacks, lunchboxes and lovies (if staying beyond noon dismissal), etc.
  • The following forms must also be on file: State of Florida Health form, Immunization Record, and a copy of your child’s birth certificate or passport.
All students entering Pre-Kindergarten I must be fully potty trained. We consider a child potty-trained when s/he is able to articulate the need to go to the bathroom (i.e., stop playing and go to the bathroom). This must be happening with consistency at home and the child must be wearing underwear for the duration of their day at St. Mark’s (not diapers or pull-ups, including during rest periods). If your child is not fully potty-trained, please contact the Director of Admission immediately and we will be glad to discuss your options.
Favorite Books to Read:

  • Pete the Cat series (by Eric Litwin)
  • Press Here (by Herve Tullet)
  • Elephant and Piggies series (by Mo Willems)
  • Silly Tilly (by Eileen Spinelli)
  • I Will Chomp You (by Jory John)
  • Truckery Rhymes (by Jon Scieszka)
  • Kipper’s A to Z: An Alphabet Adventure (by Mick Inkpen)
  • Cookie’s Week (by Cindy Ward)
  • Have You Filled a Bucket Today? (by Carol McCloud)

Apps to Try:
  • Letter School
  • My ABC Tracer
  • Endless School Bundle (there are several different individual apps available in the “Endless” series)
  • ABC Alphabet Phonics
  • Fun Brain Jr.
  • Kids’ Learning Puzzles (there are a variety of options!)
  • Little Digits
  • TinyHands Puzzles and Games
  • LEGO and LEGO Jr.

Websites with More Ideas:

Gross Motor Skills:
  • Kick or throw balls overhand
  • Ride tricycles
  • Walk on a low balance beam
  • Hop on one foot
  • Play toss and catch games in a kneeling position
  • Wheelbarrow walk
  • Create an obstacle course using chairs to crawl under or over, small items to jump, etc.
  • Mimic animal movements (crab walking, bunny and kangaroo hops, racing like a cheetah, marching like an elephant)
  • Blow bubbles
  • “Paint” a fence or wall with different brushes or rollers and water
Fine Motor Skills:
  • Make playdough together, letting your child measure and pour the ingredients. After cooking, roll “snakes,” form small balls to smash, or make other creations from their imagination.
  • Create a sensory box with a large storage container. Add a variety of items throughout the summer, such as sand, rice, noodles, birdseed, or water; funnels, spoons, cups, and items to pour with; or even safety scissors (with supervision) with different items to cut (straws, paper, construction paper, cardstock, envelopes, etc.)
  • String beads, pieces of straw, cereal, pasta, etc.
  • Work on independently completing small puzzles. (Trade with neighbors to keep them fresh throughout the summer!)
  • Explore with sidewalk chalk. Play a drawing game where you follow your child’s lead by copying exactly what s/he draws. Next, encourage your child to copy your drawings, such as circles, straight and intersecting lines, or simple shapes.
Cognitive Skills:
  • Point out colors, numbers, and letters in your everyday conversations! Notice the blue shirt your child chose to wear or that they have six carrots to finish eating.
  • Draw simple pictures of faces that show happy, sad, excited, or silly expressions. Cut them out and glue them on a Popsicle stick or pencil. Let your child act out the different feelings with the puppets.
  • Tell your child a simple story about something she did that was funny or interesting. See if your child can tell a different story about herself.
  • Give your child directions that have at least two steps when you and he are cooking, dressing, or cleaning. Say, “Put that pan in the sink, and then pick up the red spoon.”
  • Play games that involve following simple rules, such as Mother May I and Red Light, Green Light.
  • When doing housework or yard work, allow your child to do a small part on his/her own. Let him/her empty the wastebasket or clean crumbs off the table. Begin to encourage your child to get dressed on their own each day, selecting what to where from a couple of options and then independently dressing themselves.
  • Read, read, read! The topic of the book does not matter. Reading with your child develops critical skills. Stories with rhyming words, new vocabulary, and vibrant pictures are wonderful, but also consider sharing a chapter book and favorite nursery rhymes from your own childhood.