Staying On Task: 5 Kindergarten Musts (page 2)

Staying On Task: 5 Kindergarten Musts

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Updated on Mar 20, 2009

In general, all of these "on task behaviors" that teachers are looking for revolve around focus. And in a world of ever increasing sound bytes and news flashes it can be difficult for children to maintain focus. Sue Beaty, elementary school teacher and college professor, says you can build up a child’s focus over time. She suggests that parents begin to expand their child’s focus by engaging in activities together that the child enjoys. It can be helpful to use a timer set for 10 minutes of “special time together”. During this time it’s important to use positive, verbal comments that specifically praise his participation during the activity. If interest begins to decline, gently redirect the child until the task is complete. Afterwards, talk with him about how it feels to finish a task. Gradually, allow your child to take the lead in the activities you do together, building toward the time when the child works independently. 

So do teachers expect that a five-year-old will always be on task for every minute of the day? Most likely not. The important thing is that your child can get back on task after a gentle reminder for the remainder of the activity.  Just like the rest of us!

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