My two youngest kids are 3 and 5 and they have shown an interest in learning their letters, numbers, and colors. I already home school my older two girls, so I figure it will be easier to start the younger two kids on learning some of the basic skills.

Since we home school, I don’t have to worry about early bedtimes or early mornings, but I still do try to prepare my kids for school. I do some simple routines that have helped us to settle into having school at home.

Here are some simple activities to help prepare your young child for preschool.

Reading to your kids

Reading to your kids gives them a huge advantage. It will help them learn how to say particular words, what inflections the language has that can’t be learned by simply reading, and it will help their brain learn the art of words.

Take your kids with you

Let your kids experience every day life. Take them to the market and let them hear you interacting with others. Let them see how you interact with strangers versus how you interact with family members at home. Also, let them help you shop. Yes, it slows you down but it will increase their understanding and skills to get through life.

Help your kids practice independence

Let them go to the bathroom on their own. Have them dress themselves (no matter how awkward). Let them put on their own shoes. After you prepare lunch, give it to them and let them figure out how they want to eat.

Also, very important, have your kids start to memorize your name, address, and phone number. That way, if they get lost or need help, they can instruct an adult on how to contact you!

Adjust your sleep schedule

While I don’t send my kids to public school, I do prefer to keep a somewhat normal schedule so that we aren’t up half the night getting things done. A typical 5 year old needs about 12 hours of sleep a night. So make sure that if you want your son/daughter to be bright eyed and bushy-tailed for morning, that they get to bed at a reasonable time for when you want them to wake up.

While these aren’t the typical answers for preparing your children for school, I believe that these are important activities. It’s nice for your child to know the letters and numbers, but it’s also nice to know that you are sending a semi-independent kid out to learn.

What are you doing to help prepare your kids for the new school year?