Ready! Set! School! Activity Guide

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Parents are their children’s first and most influential teachers. Ready! Set! School!, a research-based curriculum, is designed to empower parents to prepare their preschool child to enter kindergarten.


Kindergarten Readiness:

Ready! Set! School! provides a toolkit of 20 activities that all parents can do with their children, divided into the following domains:

  • Friends & Family
  • Words & Language
  • Numbers & Shapes
  • Health & Safety

These domains are based on the Utah Pre-Kindergarten Guidelines. As you and your child create pictures or sing or read books together, your child will become more confident and will develop skills to prepare him or her for school.

Getting Started:

Ready! Set! School! activities are not intended to be completed in any specific order nor all at once. To get started:

  • Browse the activities and start with the one you think will be most enjoyable or helpful for your child.
  • Gather the materials you need for the activity.
  • Think of how to adapt the activity to your child’s age and level of development.

Keep in mind your child’s level of development and attention span and always keep learning fun for your child.

Exploring the Activity Cards:

activites3 Every activity card is organized in the following sections:

  • Benefits for Your Child: Outlines the skills taught in the activity
  • Kindergarten Connection: Connects the activity with skills children will build upon in kindergarten.
  • Activity: Describes how to complete the activity
  • More Ideas: Gives ideas for extending the activity
  • Tips: Points out possible challenges and suggestions to overcome them
  • Book List: Suggests books to use that are related to the activity
  • Materials: Lists what you need to have on hand for the activity

Each activity area also has a set of extra activities that are supported by a short description and a book.

To help you visualize how the activity might be done, activities are also accompanied by a six-minute video segment for parents (available online and on DVD), illustrating the activity done in a home. Because each child is unique, your experience with the activity will not be identical to the family on the video, so be creative and have fun!

Using the Book List:

Suggested book titles are provided as a springboard for discussion as you begin the activity or as an extension of the activity.

  • Visit your local library to check out these books if you do not have them.
  • Read the book with your child and point out important elements that relate to the activity. You can also review with your child the skills covered in the activity as you read the story.
  • Show your child how books work. Help him or her follow along as you read, take meaning from illustrations, learn about reading from left to right, and develop the understanding that words can be spoken and written.

Reading children’s books is often a great opportunity to develop your child’s understanding of what words mean, where they might be found in his or her environment, and how to use those words.

Organizing Your Materials:

You may want to set up a preschool box, basket, shelf, or area in your home where your child knows materials can be found. You will save the time and effort of searching if your materials are always in the same place. You may also want to have a space where your child can store completed work. This might include a display area such as the refrigerator, bedroom wall, dresser, or door.

Ensuring Safety and Supervision:

activities2 All of the activities are designed to be completed with adult supervision. Some activities include materials such as scissors, which a child may use inappropriately if you are not present. Some activities ask you to go outdoors, so please be aware and be safe with your child while doing the activity and help your child understand those things as well.

Additional Resources for Ready! Set! School!

To give you ideas for additional learning experiences for your child, Ready! Set! School! also provides online resources, many also available in Spanish, at

We hope that Ready! Set! School! will help develop a life of learning for all parents and children of Utah!

Let's start Ready! Set! School!

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