Fun activities, aligned with the PA Early Learning Standards, to help your child have a successful Kindergarten year. 
Welcome to Kindergarten, Here I Am

Each month, the Kindergarten, Here I Am newsletter will provide information for you to help your kindergartner have a successful school year.
Activities: Each activity is linked to the PA Early Learning Standards for Kindergarten. These standards are being used in kindergarten classrooms across Pennsylvania. When you and your kindergartner do activities together, you build their knowledge and experience.
Books: The books each month will help support the activities and may help your kindergartner better understand a particular concept. Print the list of books, then visit your local library to find the books mentioned each month, or ask your librarian to help you find a similar book.

Tips and Resources: Each month you can find tips and resources to help your kindergartner build the skills they need for Kindergarten. You can share your favorites with your friends and family.
Do you know a friend who would like to get the Kindergarten, Here I Am newsletter? They can sign up!
We Are Learning in June
Your child may not begin Kindergarten for a few months, but you can help your child learn throughout the summer. Try these activities, then visit your library to check out a book about it. Click here to print this list.

We are learning Language and Literacy
Do it!
Play "I Spy." Say, "I spy something with my little eyes something that starts with 'h' or ends with an 'n'." If your kindergartner has difficulty, encourage them to find something that is a specific color or shape. Change the game to develop the senses by playing "I hear with my little ear," "I feel with my little hands," "I taste with my little mouth," or "I smell with my little nose."
Read it!
S Is for S'mores: A Camping Alphabet by Helen Foster James. Q Is for Duck: An Alphabet Guessing Game by Mary Elting

We are learning Partnerships for Learning
Do it!
Find a book at your local library that shows how to do magic tricks. (Or print this month's book list and take with you!) Have your kindergartner learn a magic trick to perform for their family.
Read it!
Magic Shapes by Patrick George. Tap the Magic Tree by Christie Matheson.

We are learning Social and Emotional Development
Do it!
Make a card and take your kindergartner to do a porch drop off for an elderly friend or use video chat to share the card. Use a video chat so your your kindergartner can describe to the adult how the treat or card was made. Find pictures of things your kindergartner likes to do and help them create a picture book. Pictures can be of their favorite toys or activities they enjoy, like building with blocks.
Read it!
The Quiltmaker's Gift by Jeff Brumbeau. Zen Shorts by Jon J. Muth.   

We are learning Health, Wellness and Physical Development
Do it!
Create an exercise routine you and your kindergartner can do together. For example, yoga is stretching that can be done together. Use a calendar to keep track of how many minutes you both exercises each day.
Read it!
Sofa Boy by Scott Langteau. One Two Three PULL! by Sophie Schmid and Sabine Praml.
What Can You Do With Monthly Book Lists?

Each month  Kindergarten, Here I Am provides a list of books that compliment the activities. What can you do with this list?

  • Once it is safe to do so, print the list and take it to your local library. Your librarian can help you find the books on the list. Then read the books with your kindergartner. Help your kindergartner circle or cross out the books on the list as you read them.
  • Make a short video of your kindergartner reading or giving a book review of one of the books on the list. What was their favorite part of the book? Share the video with family and friends. Tag PA's Promise for Children on FacebookTwitter or Instagram!
  • Share the list with your friends who have children. You can forward this email to them!
  • Visit PA's Promise for Children where you can share this list via social media, like Facebook or Pinterest.
  • If you are a teacher, print this list and give it to the families of your students. Or post this list where families can see it so they'll know which books are being read in your classroom.

How do you use this book list? Share on the PA's Promise for Children's Facebook page or send it to Mary at marhal@pakeys.org.
Plan Now for July 4 Pennsylvania State Parks Fish-For-Free Day

A Fish-for-Free Day is a great way for families to catch the fun of fishing! The July 4, 2021, Fish-for-Free Day allows anyone (resident or non-resident) to legally fish on Pennsylvania waterways with no fishing license required. All other fishing regulations still apply.

Don't have the equipment for fishing? Check out the Borrow a Rod & Reel Fishing Tackle Loaner Program. The public can go to the locations identified and borrow rods, reels and a tackle box full of hooks and other terminal tackle. This equipment is borrowed in much the same way books are borrowed from a library. Those wanting to borrow gear complete a form and the loan is made. At the end of the loan period the equipment is returned to the site.
Healthy and Ready to Learn (HRSA) Study

The Collaborating Center for Questionnaire Design and Evaluation Research (CCQDER) is recruiting participants for research projects being conducted for the federal government. The Healthy and Ready to Learn (HRSA) study is open to adults aged 18 or over who have a child aged 3 to 5 years old and who work multiple jobs, work as temporary employees or contractors, or are not currently employed. Families may answer questions that may be asked on a national survey. The interview via Zoom will take no longer than 60 minutes and participants will receive $40. For more information or with any questions, please call Amanda at 301-458-4579 or send an email to RecruitmentTeam@cdc.gov.
Camp BOOK IT!

Families, join Camp BOOK IT! and keep rewarding your kids all summer long. Track and reward your kids' reading for June, July and August in the digital dashboard at the BOOK IT! website. When they meet their monthly reading goal, they'll receive a free one-topping Personal Pan Pizza® from Pizza Hut! BOOK IT! will also share fun activities and book recommendations each week to keep the fun going throughout the summer. Enroll today!
Find Summer Meals in Your Community

Nutritious free meals are available for children and teens, 18 and younger, at many locations throughout Pennsylvania throughout the summer while school is out of session.
 
Pennsylvanians Having Trouble Paying Rent - Apply for Assistance Today!

Pennsylvanians who are behind on rental payments or are having trouble paying upcoming rent and landlords with tenants should apply for assistance available through the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP). Households may be eligible for up to 12 months of assistance to cover past-due or future rental and/or utility payments. Assistance can be provided to a tenant for future rental payments, and for unpaid rental or utility arrears that were accrued on or after March 13, 2020, on a residential rental property. Counties may choose to provide additional assistance to eligible households if funds remain available.
 
For more information on ERAP and to apply online or via paper application, visit www.dhs.pa.gov/erap.  
Help Paying for Internet Services 

The Emergency Broadband Benefit is a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program to help families and households struggling to afford internet service during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Emergency Broadband Benefit provides a discount of up to $50 per month towards broadband service for eligible households. Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers. Learn more.
Pennsylvania's KinConnector 

Pennsylvania's KinConnector provides guidance, advice and support for kinship care families though out Pennsylvania in numerous ways, including:
  • Connecting caregivers to health, financial, and legal services;
  • Connecting Caregivers to training and parenting support Identifying local physical or behavioral health services;
  • Identifying support groups Guiding caregivers on how to apply for federal, state, and local benefits such as CHIP and Social Security, and other services designed to support caregivers; and
  • Providing access to a compassionate KinConnector who will listen and provide supportive guidance.
New Website Helps Pennsylvanians Find Vaccination Sites

The Department of Health recently transitioned to using Vaccines.gov to help Pennsylvanians find a COVID-19 vaccine location. The new map allows users to search for providers by the type of COVID-19 vaccines they offer. Vaccines.gov, also known as Vaccine Finder, is a free, online service that provides the latest vaccine availability at providers and pharmacies across the United States. This trusted website has been used previously for various other types of vaccines, such as the flu vaccine.
Should Your Kindergartner Drink Juice?

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) policy on juice recommends that children 4-6 years limit juice to no more than 4-6 ounces per day. This is the amount in a typical juice box. Children should also not be allowed to carry a cup or juice box throughout the day. The evidence is clear that over-consumption of juice can lead to weight gain and tooth decay.  Click here to see what other options there are for kindergartners when thirsty.
Six Tips for Summer Safety

Sun shining, warmer temperatures--it's almost time for summer fun! Help keep your kindergartner safe while having fun this summer season with these six tips. Click to print the list.

  1. Prevent heatstroke 
  2. Secure pool areas 
  3. Protect from bug bites 
  4. Use sunscreen 
  5. Stay hydrated 
  6. Keep cool
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The Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) provides families access to high quality services to prepare children for school and life success. 
  
Find more information about Quality Early Learning in Pennsylvania