What to Teach a Four Year Old?

Updated on February 21, 2008
A.G. asks from Brownwood, TX
10 answers

I have a four year that stays home with me all day. She is not going to any preschool classes, other than church. So, what should be teaching her to help get her ready for school next year. I do not want her to behind. Thanks!

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So What Happened?

Thanks for all the info. and ideas! I think I can come up with a good game plan on helping my baby (who has never even gone to day care) get ready for school! thnaks for taking the time to responed!

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answers from Dallas on


I think the important thing for a 4 year old is to keep learning fun. They learn so much at that age just by spending time with us and participating in daily life. Here's some information on teaching preschool at home that may help you. It has suggested activities for all subjects:

If you want to add in a few workbooks, I really like the Kumon workbooks or the preshool series by Rod and Staff Publishers:

But at this age, she should need very little bookwork. No more than about 30 minutes per day.


2 moms found this helpful

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answers from Dallas on

Maybe more things like making sure she can button and unzip/zip her own pants when she goes potty. Can she take her own straw out and put it in a juice box? Can she open her own snack bags or yogurt lids? I know, stuff I catch myself still doing for my son who will start kinder next year.

Mainly, they should be able to write their own names (at least first), count to 20, identify colors, know abc's and recognize a few letters.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Abilene on

Hello. I think they should be taught not only how to count but also know the value of the numbers like the number 2 means two of something 5 is five of something etc. Skip counting of helpful but may be too advanced. My son is 4 and I am homeschooling. He can skip count by 2's, 10's and we are learning by 5's now. We are using Math U See curriculum and he loves it. I think what others said about tying shoes and buttoning pants etc would be a plus. I know I still do these things for my son too. Letter sounds are good to know also, you can get the Leap Frog video's for that. They don't teach all the sounds but they give a good head start. (Leap Frog Letter Factory, Leap Frog Word Factory, and Leap Frog Storybook Factory.) My son really enjoyed these video's.



answers from Dallas on

What they need to know for Kindergarten can be found here:
good luck.



answers from Wichita Falls on

My formerly 'homeschooled' son is now doing pre-k at the local public school (an Exemplary school in an Exemplary district - lol).

They are solidly learning their colors, basic shapes, how to count to 20, 1-1 correspondence, their phone numbers and addresses, and recognition and sound of the letter of the week - this week's letter is R. Rowdy the Rodeo Rat, Robots, and Rainbows have been the curriculum.

That stuff he knew - he also knows how to write his own name, some addition and subtraction facts, and reads several different books to himself.

What was new: Following in a line, pottying by himself (including wiping his own butt), raising his hand to talk.. which is the stuff that caused me to put him in Pre-K in the first place.

The odds are good that if you talk to your daughter about the surroundings, she'll be academically ready for Kindergarten - they are on such different readiness levels, anyway, at that age. The only thing I'd worry about are the independent skills - especially pottying - because the teachers will not touch them.




answers from Dallas on

My daughter knew it all going to Kindergarten, how to spell and write her name, her letters and numbers. They still teach it all and she was bored. They had name sheets and taught the class how to do their own first and last names. They taught letters and numbers, colors, shapes the first half of the school year as well as sight words. She should not be behind. The class had kids that did not know how to write their name and they are caught up. My daughter did not do pre school.



answers from Dallas on


I use www.funshinexpress.com curriculum for my boys (3 1/2 and 2)..great - crafts almost every day with most supplies included. I also use the christian suppliemnt.




answers from Dallas on

A good guideline for preparing for kindergarten is learning to write her name, recognizing her name, knowing her alphabet, labeling shapes like circle, square, triangle, regtangle, etc.

Use flash cards with letters and an picture representing each letter. Get the ones that show the upper and lower case letters with pics.

Get flash cards with numbers 0 to 20 or higher. Get them with pics of the same number of objects. You can also make these flash cards yourself if you have a computer with access to the internet.

She should also be able to remember the sound each letter makes.

Let her begin practicing tracing/writing each letter. There are pre-k workbooks you can get at Mardel, a teacher's store, or sometimes at the grocery store or drug store.

Also, have her begin learning to group things into sets like all green, all red, or all circles, all squares, etc.

She should have fun with this and you, too. I remember my 4-year-old would look forward to me giving her homework to do while her older sister did homework.



answers from Dallas on

Dear A.,

I hope I can meet you sometime!! We do foster care as well and I'm currently waiting/hoping/praying for another placement! I'd recommend you try out My Father's World <http://www.mfwbooks.com/&gt;. It's a great resource for toddlers and pre-k as well as having a curriculum K-8th grade.

Hope that helps! E. :-)



answers from Dallas on

My son did not do pre-school either. I do in-home childcare so he was home with me. He could write his name and new his colors and count to 20. The only thing I didn't do was teach him his letter sounds, and I think that is why he struggled when it came to learning how to read. Another thing, have her write her name with lower case letters, not all upper case. I taught my son his phone number and his birthday and we started on the city and state where he lived. I wouldn't worry about the lunch stuff, the teachers were very helpful at my son's school.

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