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Buckle down for VPK!

By Staff | Jul 5, 2024

To the editor:

In case you missed the memo, VPK is an abbreviation for the Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten program. I think everyone has already heard the buzz about VPK and the importance of getting children ready for kindergarten. Did you ever stop to think that for “first-time” parents, this educational ride is their first rodeo as well? So, I am hoping that these few tips will help the parents with a smooth transition into the VPK class with their child. Consistency, being prepared, and staying informed are three key secrets for beginning your child’s success!

Consistency and routine are hand in hand for a smoother day for ALL. Being the parent that is always late never gives the child the opportunity to get the full lesson that has already begun. They need time to say good morning to their friends, put away their things, and settle down to receive those learning lessons. Were we not trained with school bells? Life may throw a wrench in your routine, but let’s not use excuses as a routine.

Being prepared helps the provider to be able to serve your child better. We may need certain supplies such as: a change of clothes for your child, a blanket for nap time, or special items for a class experiment or cooking project. When a child falls short, I promise you that it does affect them. Saddened feelings as they do notice, when all their friends retrieve their items, and they go to an empty cubby. You can’t bake a cake without all the ingredients.

Staying informed is simple communication skills with BOTH the child and the facility. Your childcare facility has daily sheets, school apps, social media, web pages, paper handouts, and other means of communication. It is your responsibility as the parent to stay informed about your child’s learning experience and/or what is going on in the facility. I am sure you haven’t missed the latest tiktok/facebook/twitter post that is trending? It’s a simple fix of prioritizing the priorities.

I feel as a provider it is MY responsibility to help get these parents trained as well as get the kiddos prepared. If I have posted information on our school app and then a parent asks me for that information, I will redirect them back to our app to seek the answer. This is not to be a jerk, on my part, but to train the parent how to be resourceful for their own child. After all, when THEY begin their new journey to public school, I will have wholeheartedly prepared that child with a trained independent guardian.

Deana Campbell

Cape Coral