Basic self-care skills are important, such as handwashing, nose wiping, attempting to dress and undress themselves, and potty training so they can use the toilet with growing confidence. Build independence by encouraging them to feed themselves, use cutlery, play independently and choose their own activities. The adults in the Nursery setting will of course help them with these activities, but the more you do at home, the easier your child will find it to manage when they are away from you.
Books are magic!
Read with your child as often as you can so that they can listen to books all the way through and enjoy sharing them with adults. Young children love the familiarity of stories and nursery rhymes read over and over again. Reading with children is beneficial in multiple ways; it improves concentration, teaches children about the world around them, improves vocabulary and language skills, develops their imagination and helps develop empathy. As far as your child is concerned, however, reading is fun!
Practice makes perfect
Developing fine and gross motor skills comes with practice and there are any number of opportunities for this at home. Colouring, working with play dough, and stringing beads together help build fine motor skills. Most children love to express their inner artist with pencils, pens, paint, or chalk, each of which requires co-ordination of small movements. Completing simple jigsaw puzzles is another favourite activity where the repetition of placing pieces improves fine motor skills.
When it comes to gross motor skills, running, jumping, climbing, throwing and kicking a ball are all important, and having confidence in these areas will enable them to really enjoy Nursery.
Do as you would be done by
It may sound obvious, but thoughtfulness and good manners will really help as your child settles in to a new social group. Encourage pleases and thank yous, to their peers as well as the adults around them. The ability to share toys can take a while to learn, especially for oldest children, but it will make their interactions much easier.