Saturday, May 3, 2014

Pre-K Summer Learning Activities and Ideas

CHEERS to College Visits & spreading the KBound FUN!

We recently presented to parents and teachers at a local college.  The topic was "Summertime Learning Activities" and our focus was to provide hands-on, developmentally appropriate, FUN readiness activities for keeping skills sharp during the summer months between pre-K and Kindergarten.  

While we are unable to post entire KBound presentations here (due to legal business contracts), we ARE happy to share specific pieces as you express interest in using them in your magnificent work and play with young children and their families!

The calendars below go along with a powerpoint, which highlights correlating school readiness skills.  Along with the ideas on the calendars, additional activities are presented which support teachers in both providing practice in the classroom AND in their work to encourage practical and meaningful practice at home as well. 

The goal is not one of mastery, but of exposure and practice!  

More pieces of "Summertime Learning Activities"...

Kindergarten Readiness Skills:  We've got you covered!

Encourage writing development through a variety of experiences: shaving cream,
paintbrush&water, chalk, short pencils, clipboards, journals,
books/songs/poems about letters and writing

Helping caregivers, parents, relatives to recognize times
 during a busy day to play word games, point out shapes/colors, read a story,
practice rhyming or counting, follow 2-step directions, ... 

Be sure to revisit our "Going to Kindergarten" BOOKLIST (April 2013 post) for titles and brief summaries of books to read to kiddos who are KBound! 

 Keeping skills sharp, while celebrating the joy and anticipation of this transition time, is KEY! 

M&J :) :)

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

We're STILL here!!!

Yes, your KBound Girls ARE still here!!!
We're enjoying this beautiful&SNOWY winter
... and we're using this snowed-IN Day to play some serious 

CATCH UP!!!!!!! (the KB way ;)

...because we are painfully aware that we haven't reported for Blog Duty since the end of July! (consider the elephant addressed!!!)!  But this is actually very gooooooood news because we've been SO VERY busy both in and out of the classrooms these past months!  
Take a peek at some of the highlights...

In July, we chilled and enjoyed the bright show...

August heat, slooooooowed us down, don't ya know? 

Someone's birthday in September...

the BIG 5-0, one to remember!

Work in October brought schools, trainings, scary faces,... Oh, MY! 

In November, we treated our Memes to pie! (and hats ;)

 December brought presents and time 'round the tree...
time for the fam and for you and for me!

We want to THANK our teacher and director friends for joining us after long days on the job and on weekends, too!  
It's not only FUN, but so POWERFUL to share ideas that are truly meaningful- and simple enough to try with kiddos the very next time you're together!

Preparing children and families for the big move to Kindergarten!
Literacy and Math... Can't have one without the other!

WIN-WIN!  We give AND get ideas everywhere we go!
Setting your children, your classroom, your SELF up for successful behavior!

What's COMING UP?  
We are behind the scenes working on teacher trainings alllllll about Parent/Teacher Conferences and Kindergarten Readiness.  We LOVE knowing that we spent nearly 30 years EXACTLY where these preschoolers are headed.  That's exactly how we know what we know and why we do what we do!

M&J :) :)

P.S. Don't forget to pass the "catch up"- to yourself OR 
to someone else you know who is bound to need it, too!  
That's just life, isn't it?

Monday, July 29, 2013

"Transitioning to Kindergarten", August'13

Happy Summertime from your friends at KBound!

We thought we'd take a break from our summer activities to let you in on some exciting news! We have just finished up our "Early Childhood Literacy" and our "Early Childhood Numeracy" trainings in nine different counties.  We've shared a lot of fun ideas these past months and have met so many fun, interesting, and appreciative participants along the way.  We appreciate you, too!!  And the good news is that we look forward to seeing you SOON because we will be headed your way again in August!!!  We'll be on the road with our 3 hour "Transitioning to Kindergarten" professional development training and we'll be revisiting each of our nine counties during the next month.  
We are so excited!! :) :)

Here's a description of KBound's August training:

Transitioning from preschool to kindergarten is an exciting, sometimes overwhelming, process! Thoughtful preparation and planning is key. Join us as we review the preschool year, summarize readiness skills needed for kindergarten, and give practical tips and realistic expectations to successfully plan and move children forward.

Please call our friends at Childcare Resources today to find out when/where you can join us.  Also, you will learn about an exciting opportunity to receive free consultation at your site, along with earning an additional credit through CCRs "Extended Learning Experiences". WOW!!!  Sign up for your exciting August training opportunities soon!  Special Note: If you are unfamiliar with CCR and the 9 counties of which we refer, then you are most likely from outside of our area ... Feel free to leave a message here or email us at  We are happy to make arrangements directly with your preschool site or early elementary staff to provide trainings of interest to you.    

Then, later this fall, watch for KBound's new 3 hour trainings all about:

***Behavior - how to be proactive in setting up your learning environment and your expectations/procedures

***Literacy/Numeracy, PART 2 - reviewing and adding more details, ideas, and make-and-take activities

Ok, we're headed back out for some more fun in the summer sun!  Get out there and enjoy it, too... Then take a break from the heat and join us in August!

See you soon :) :)

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Early Childhood Professional Development

P.S.   Feel free to (re)read our April 3 post, "On the Road Again..." There are PD photos and some fun memories shared.  By the way, we will be revisiting Allegan, Barry, Berrien, Branch, Calhoun, Cass, Kalamazoo, St. Joseph, and Van Buren counties with our 3 hour "Transitioning to Kindergarten" PD beginning in August.... 
Look us UP!!! We'd love to see you!!! 

   We also want to THANK the amazingly fun and active participants who come to see us- and then who seek us out again (bringing friends!) to join in some more fun!!!  You inspire us to keep sharing what we know to be educationally sound, developmentally appropriate, motivating, and helping to prepare kids for the next level.   So many of you agree that it's crucial to give children exposure to meaningful, intentional activities and that it truly is 
OK to expect more.... 
If they are ready, they can do it!  
If they are ready, they WANT to do it!

( Often times behavior issues arise from kids needing more.....But that's another PD ;)

Happy July!
M&J :) :)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Book List: Going to Kindergarten

           *Book List : Going to Kindergarten
Annabelle Swift, Kindergartner by Amy Schwartz
Although some of the things her older sister taught her at home seem a little unusual at school, other lessons help make Annabelle's first day in Kindergarten a success.
Benjamin Bigfoot by Mary Serfozo
Because he feels big when he wears his father's shoes, Benjamin wants to wear them when he begins Kindergarten. Will he be able to manage his big shoes in school?
Berenstain Bears Go to School by Stan & Jan Berenstain
Sister Bear, nervous about entering kindergarten, overcomes her fears when she discovers that school is really fun.
Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes
Chrysanthemum is excited about school until the kids make fun of her name. Will school get better?
Cleversticks by Bernard Ashley
Ling-Sung is frustrated because everyone in his class seems to be good at something except him. Then one day he discovers an unexpected talent...
Countdown to Kindergarten by Alison McGhee
A little girl shares the “rules” of Kindergarten, which are really her fears as she anticipates her 1st day. What a relief when she learns that kids don’t have to know everything to start school!
Curious George Goes to School by Margret and H.A. Rey’s 
Curious monkey, George, gets into trouble. . . again! This time, it’s at school.
Do You Want to Be My Friend? by Eric Carle 
Little Mouse goes looking for a friend . . . and he finds one!
Enrico Starts School by Charlotte Middleton
When Enrico starts school, he is not sure how to make friends. He tries several strategies then decides to take his brother 's advice to just be himself.
First Day by Dandi Daley Mackall
Told in poetic rhyme with some humor, a little girl experiences her first day of school.
First Day Jitters by Julie Danneberg
Jittery feelings of starting school make Sarah uneasy. But there’s a twist! Everybody is apprehensive, even teachers.
Froggy Goes to School by Jonathan London
Froggy hops through his first day of school with lots of fun and even teaches the principal to swim!
I Am Too Absolutely Small For School by Lauren Child
Lola's parents tell her that she is nearly big enough for school, but Lola is not convinced. When her brother Charlie points out some of the advantages of learning numbers and letters and words, she decides to give it a try. After all, how would you give treats to eleven elephants if you can only count to ten?
I'm Telling You, Dex, Kindergarten Rocks! by Katie Davis
Dexter's dog Rufus is a tiny bit worried about Kindergarten. Big sister Jessie tells Dexter and Rufus that they will love it—and it turns out that they do!
Jessica by Kevin Henkes
Ruthie does everything with her imaginary friend Jessica. Then on her first day at Kindergarten, she meets a real girl with the same name
Kindergarten ABC by Jacqueline Rogers
Learn the ABC’s through classroom fun and activities. Search-and-find items, too!

Kindergarten Kids by Ellen B. Senisi
Real photos of real kids doing real Kindergarten activities throughout the day!
Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn
Chester Raccoon and his mother help each other to find a way to alleviate their worries about being away from each other during school hours.
Little Bear Goes to Kindergarten by Jutta Langreuter, Vera Sobat 
Little Bear likes the teacher, other children, and activities on his first day at Kindergarten, but he does not want his mother to leave.
Look out Kindergarten, Here I Come! by Nancy Carlson
Even though Henry is looking forward to going to kindergarten, he is not sure about staying once he first gets there.
Mama, Don't Go! by Rosemary Wells
Yoko loves Kindergarten, but she doesn't want her mother to leave—until her new friend helps her realize that “mothers always come back.”
Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten by Joseph Slate
Fun with the letters of the alphabet as Miss Bindergarten and her students get ready for Kindergarten.
My Teacher’s My Friend by P.K. Hallinam
A teacher helps our young students throughout the school day.
My First Day of School by P.K. Hallinam
Little Daniel goes to school for the first time. Book is filled with rhyming.
Night Before Kindergarten by Natasha Wing
The hours leading up to the big first day are filled with excitement and anticipation. They are busy, too! Emotions of students and their grown ups are shared in this story.

Off to Kindergarten by Tony Johnston
In this upbeat rhyming story, a young boy tries to pack all the things he imagines he'll need for school--such as cookies for himself and his new friends, books to read while they have a snack, his easel and paints—until his mother assures him that his teacher will have everything he will need.
Off to School, Baby Duck! by Amy Hest
Baby Duck has all her supplies, but is nervous about school. The teacher introduces herself and Grandpa asks the important questions—“Are you mean? Do you sing songs in this school?” Finally, Baby Duck feels brave enough to go in.
Rachel Parker, Kindergarten Show-off by Ann Martin
Five-year-old Olivia's new neighbor Rachel is in her Kindergarten class, and they must overcome feelings of jealousy and competitiveness to be friends.
Timothy Goes to School by Rosemary Wells
Timothy learns about being accepted and making friends during the first week of his first year at school.
Tom Goes to Kindergarten by Margaret Wild
Tom is excited to start Kindergarten—until it's time for his parents to say good-bye. When his teacher tells them that they can stay for the day, they reluctantly agree. The next day, Tom is ready to be on his own—but his parents don't want to leave!
We Like Kindergarten by Clara Cassidy 
Copyrighted 1965, this book shows the fun and play of Kindergarten.
Welcome to Kindergarten by Anne Rockwell
A boy visits the classroom where he will attend Kindergarten the following fall and finds out just what fun is in store for him.
Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes
It’s ok to worry, but the reader learns that most worries go away once school starts.
When Kangaroo Goes to School by Sonia Levitin
Kangaroo learns the proper way to behave on the first day of school.
Who Will Go to Kindergarten Today? by Karl Ruhmann
Sam wishes he could send his stuffed monkey to school in his place- until he realizes that he would be missing out on a day filled with fun.

Resources for Parents
The Between the Lions Book For Parents: Everything You Need to
Know to Help Your Child Learn to Read by Linda K. Rath and Louise
Based on the show Between the Lions, the authors explain early literacy to parents and suggest ways to support their children as they learn.
The Complete IEP Guide: How To Advocate For Your Special Ed Child by Attorney Lawrence M. Siegel
This book offers advice on understanding current IEP laws, how to plan for IEP meetings, and how to make a case for your child, should it becomes necessary.
Games For Learning: Ten Minutes a Day To Help Your Child Do Well In School—From Kindergarten to Third Grade by Peggy Kaye
Suggests games for you and your child to play to help her get ready for school.
Helping Your Child Start School: A Practical Guide for Parents by Bernard Ryan Jr.
This guide explains what happens during the day in Kindergarten and why.
The Mom Book Goes to School: Insider Tips to Ensure Your Child
Thrives in Elementary and Middle School by Stacy DeBroff
This book offers advice on everything from getting the most out of Parent/Teacher Conferences to Learning Disabilities to Volunteering. Subdivided chapters and a bulleted format make this guide easy to use.
The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease
The Read-Aloud Handbook demonstrates the importance of reading aloud to kids of ALL ages with a combination of easy-to-understand research, examples, and personal stories. Offers a list of over 1,000 great books for reading aloud.
What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know: Preparing Your Child for a Lifetime of Learning edited by E.D. Hirsch, Jr., John Holdren 
The beginning of a series that goes through grades six, the authors offer a guide to some of the general knowledge and skills Kindergarteners need.
What Your Preschooler Needs to Know: Read-Alouds to Get Ready for Kindergarten by E.D. Hirsch, Jr.
Includes a book list of quality read-alouds that reinforce important early childhood skills.

*compilation list from and