Each child entering Kindergarten in Washington is evaluated by their teachers with the WAKIDS assessment to see their level of readiness in 6 categories. More information can be found on the OSPI website, in several languages, and from Teaching Strategies GOLD here: English Spanish
Our Ready, Set, Read – Tacoma activities are specially designed to give parents tools to build up these needed skills with their children.
Two in five Pierce County children entering kindergarten are not prepared for school.
For children living in poverty, the gaps are even greater. By age 5, the average low-income child can identify nine letters in the alphabet compared to their middle-class peers who average 22 letters.*
The mission of our preschool reading enrichment program is to narrow the achievement gap in reading before a child enters kindergarten, helping facilitate both their academic success and their social and emotional development.
Ready, Set, Read-Tacoma! works with Tacoma Public Schools librarians to help prepare all preschool aged children for transitioning into a school setting. While every teacher and school has their own set of “prerequisites,” there’s a set of general reading expectations that most teachers share, when it comes to kids entering kindergarten. Before entering kindergarten, a student well prepared for reading should be able to:
1. Read his/her name
2. Recite the alphabet
3. Recognize some or all of the letters in the alphabet
4. Correspond some or all letters with their correct sound
5. Make rhymes
6. Hold a book right side up with the spine on the left, front cover showing
7. Recognize that the progression of text is left to right, top to bottom
8. Echo simple text that is read to them
9. Recognize that text holds meaning
10. Re-tell a favorite story
If your child is not quite steady in all of these areas, don’t panic! Every child enters kindergarten at a different level and teachers expect a huge variation in the skills each student brings. They’re trained to optimize success for each individual, no matter what.**
*Statistics from United Way of Pierce County.
**Information from Education.com