June 2021
Activities aligned with the Pennsylvania Early Learning Standards to help your preschooler prepare for Kindergarten. 
Each month, the Kindergarten, Here I Come! newsletter will provide ways you can help your preschooler prepare for Kindergarten. 
 
Activities: These activities will help give your preschooler the foundation for positive and happy school experiences. The activities are linked to the PA Early Learning Standard which are used in pre-kindergarten programs throughout Pennsylvania. 
 
Book Lists:  The book lists will help support the activities and may help your preschooler better understand a concept. 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 find tips and resources to help your preschooler learn and get ready for Kindergarten. Share your favorites with friends and family.

Do you know a friend who would like to get the Kindergarten, Here I Come! newsletter? 
Let's Play and Learn
Did you know that when preschoolers play, they learn? It's true! Use these activities to encourage your preschooler to play.

We're learning Language and Literacy Skills  
Do it! 
Find an object around the house and ask your preschooler to think of words that rhyme or sound the same. Nonsense words are okay, too. If your preschooler is not able to come up with a rhyme on their own, give them options. "Does cat rhyme with chair? Does cat rhyme with hat?" Your preschooler may be able to let you know they understand the rhyme by their facial expressions and vocalizations.
Read it! 
Five Little Monkeys Sitting in a Tree by Eileen Christelow. Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin by Lloyd Moss.

We're learning through Play
Do it!  
Play the Opposite Game. Say a word and see if your preschooler can say the opposite. You say, "Walk," and your preschooler says, "Run." You say, "Happy," and your preschooler says, "Sad." Create your own song to a simple tune like, "Mary had a little lamb" using opposite words. Act out the motions and facial expressions whenever possible.   
Read it!  
Octopus Opposites by Stella Blackstone. Two Little Trains by Margaret Wise Brown.

We're learning Science Thinking and Technology 
Do it! 
While outside, throw different kinds of balls into the air. Talk about which one goes higher, faster, and further. 
Read it! 
Biggest, Strongest, Fastest by Steve Jenkins. Who Sank the Boat? by Pamela Allen.

We're learning Mathematical Thinking and Expression
Do it! 
Create sound patterns using your hands or mouth. Ask your preschooler to repeat them. (Clap, clap, tap. Or finger snap, tongue click, finger snap.) Physically pat or tap your preschooler's arm or hand as you do this. You can also assist them in clapping or patting. 
Read it!  
The Best Bug Parade by Stuart J. Murphy. The Napping House by Audrey Wood and Don Wood.
What Can You Do With Monthly Book Lists?
Each month  Kindergarten, Here I Come! provides a list of books that compliment the activities. What can you do with this list?
  • 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 preschooler. Help your preschooler circle or cross out the books on the list as you read them.
  • Make a short video of your preschooler 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, click the picture to print the 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 PA's Promise for Children, the 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. 

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 Preschooler Drink Juice?
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) policy on juice recommends that preschool aged 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 preschoolers when thirsty. 
Six Tips for Summer Safety
Sun shining, warmer temperatures--it's almost time for summer fun! Help keep your preschooler safe while having fun this summer season with these six tips.  

  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