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Kindergarten Readiness

Kindergarten Readiness

First Edition

October 2012 | 184 pages | Corwin

Put children on a path to success!

The hard truth? Some kids are just more ready for kindergarten than others, dictated in part by their socioeconomic background and prior learning experiences. Even worse, unless we can provide the support these kids need early on, there's a risk some may never catch up.

That's where Kindergarten Readiness steps in. It's a ready guidebook to help you equip our youngest students for formal schooling. Covering everything from involving parents to creating developmentally appropriate curriculum, this book will help you: 

  • Understand the complexities of the transition to kindergarten
  • Implement a successful program of instruction and assessment appropriate for children with various abilities
  • Align your lessons with Common Core kindergarten standards
  • Assess young children's skills and abilities
  • Tailor your program to enrich learning for all students

Filled with authentic photos and tools for practice, this is one of the rare resources to combine the latest research with immediately useable ideas and professional development support.

"This book has the potential to change the way that early childhood teachers work with children."
—Nancy Marie Borie Betler, Instructional Support Specialist
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Charlotte, NC

"There are few resources on how to adequately prepare children for kindergarten and none that approaches the topic with such a depth of knowledge and research."
—Diana Parker, PreK Teacher
Robert Frost Elementary School, Manteno, IL

Figures, Tables, and Resources
About the Author
1. Conceptualizing Kindergarten Readiness: What Does It Mean to Be Ready for Kindergarten?
2. A New Framework for Kindergarten Readiness
3. What Do Young Children Need to Know and Be Able to Do to Be Ready for Kindergarten?
4. The Developmentally Appropriate Curriculum
5. Creating a Developmentally Appropriate Classroom Learning Environment
6. Assessment of Young Children
7. Addressing the Needs of Struggling Children
8. Partnering With Families - The Family's Role in Kindergarten Readiness
9. The Transition to Kindergarten: Alignment and Transition
10. Conclusion

"This book has the potential to change the way that preschool/daycare teachers work with children. It will allow teachers to see the correlation to how well they prepare their students for kindergarten to the success of these individuals later in school and in life."

Nancy Marie Borie Betler, Instructional Support Specialist
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Charlotte, NC

"This is one of the most clearly organized and focused books that I’ve read, and one of the few that I’ve found on this topic. I really appreciate the information on engaging parents and working with them. This is something I struggle with and the book addresses it nicely."

Shannon Acker, PreK Teacher, SPED

"The author has included numerous resources that make implementation possible and easy for the reader. This is one of the books greatest strengths! This book’s major strength is its topic and the practical nature of it. There are few resources on how to adequately prepare children for kindergarten and none that approach the topic with such a depth of knowledge and research, and well and a methodical approach that provides teachers and parents with practical ways to ensure a child’s success in kindergarten."

Diana Parker, Pre-K Teacher
Robert Frost Elementary School, Manteno, IL
Key features


  • Hot Topic: Kindergarten/school readiness and quality early childhood education have become a hot topic in education policy and initiatives at the state and federal level (further information provided below).
  • Funding: As a focal point of federal and state initiatives, early childhood and Pre-K programs are receiving additional funding and specifically are looking for professional development tools.
  • The Author: Cappelloni is a seasoned ECE educator, researcher, and consultant. Her background allows her to be relevant, informed, and a self-promoter.

Funding Opportunities

State-funded prekindergarten for 4-year-olds has grown by leaps and bounds in recent years, with the number of such programs up by 40 percent over the last five years alone. One factor contributing to the growth is strong evidence that early-childhood experience influences the development of the brain's architecture. Another is the record of producing beneficial long-term effects and solid returns on investment established by high-quality prekindergarten for children living in low-income families.

-From "Creating the Best Prekindergartens: Five ingredients for Long Term-Effects and Returns on Investment" by Lawrence J. Schweinhart, in Barack Obama's The Obama education plan: an education week guide, 2008.


State Initiatives/Funding

Most States have ECE initiatives that tie directly to Kindergarten readiness and standards. For example:

  • Washington: WAKIDS is a program for Kindergarten readiness, working with parents and educators, including PD.
  • California: Develops and funds statewide programs and public education efforts that directly benefit children and families and also advocates for a sustainable early childhood system for future generations.
  • Oklahoma: OK has almost universal preschool education. Their success is school readiness and student achievement has been documented in Developmental Psychology (2005)
  • Nebraska: Early Childhood Grant $11.1 million to fund the creation of more pre-K public education.
  • DC: Pre-Kindergarten Enhancement And Expansion Program Assistance Grant $625K
  • Connecticut: School Readiness Grant $2 million

Government Initiatives for Improving Early Childhood Education

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Secretary Sebelius

Key Initiative: Promote Early Childhood Health and Development

  • Improve Early Learning Program Quality and Young Children's School Readiness Outcomes
    HHS will work to foster high quality in its early care and education programs, including Early Head Start, Head Start and the Child Care and Development Fund. HHS will revise the Head Start Program Performance Standards and improve training for teachers and program directors, utilizing the latest research. HHS will ensure that Head Start programs meet the educational, health, and nutritional needs of the children and families they serve. HHS will promote the use of Quality Rating Improvement Systems in child care programs, which can provide families with valuable information about the quality of child care providers while encouraging providers to invest in quality improvements and assisting them in such efforts.

FROM the Testimony of Joan Lombardi, Ph.D., Deputy Assistant Secretary and Inter-Departmental Liaison for Early Childhood Development, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Before the Subcommittee on Children and Families Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions United States Senate, June 9, 2011

Evidence continues to mount demonstrating how children's earliest experiences provide a foundation that can have a profound influence on their later success. Nurturing and stimulating care given in the early years of life literally builds optimal brain architecture that allows children to maximize their enormous potential for learning. On the other hand, hardship in the early years of life can increase the odds of towards later problems. Interventions in the first years of life are capable of helping to shift the odds for those at risk of poor outcomes toward more positive outcomes. Because of the relationship between early experience and later success, investments in high quality early childhood programs can pay large dividends.

FROM NEA's 2008 Policy Brief on Early Childhood Education and School Readiness1

NEA is concerned about the growing number of children who enter kindergarten already behind their peers socially and academically. Evidence suggests this "school readiness" gap begins before children enter school and places children at risk of failure in school. The Association believes all children deserve access to early learning opportunities that will increase their chances for success in school and in life.

Two of the best known longitudinal studies on the long-term benefits of early childhood education are the High/Scope Perry Preschool Project2 and the Abecedarian Early Childhood Intervention Project3. The Perry project found that individuals who were enrolled in a quality preschool program ultimately earned up to $2,000 more per month than those who were not, and that young people who were in preschool programs were more likely to graduate from high school, to own homes, and to have longer marriages. The Abecedarian project offered similar and equally compelling results: Children in quality preschool programs are less likely to repeat grades, need special education, or get into future trouble with the law.

1 National Education Association. Brief on Early Childhood Education and School Readiness. (2008)

2 L. J. Schweinhart, J. Montie, Z. Xiang, W. S. Barnett, C. R. Belfield & M. Nores. (2005). Lifetime Effects: The High/Scope Perry Preschool Study Through Age 40 (Ypsilanti, Michigan: High/Scope Educational Research Foundation).

3 Abecedarian Early Childhood Intervention Project,

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ISBN: 9781452241944
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