How to Prepare Your Toddler for Academic Excellence

Early Bird Catches The Worm

Parents! If you are planning for your child to excel academically and professionally, it’s extremely important to start preparing them EARLY! How early? Education starts once the child is in the womb. Recent scientific research suggests that fetuses can hear and feel sounds outside of his/her mother's womb. Fetuses can recognizes songs, sounds and languages that is frequently played or spoken in his/her environment.

The Sooner, The Better

Once the child is born, parents can begin implementing small daily tasks to increase the child's brain function. Daily tasks; singing nursery rhymes, reading a book, playing with building blocks and showing sight word flash cards, can make a big impact on your child's educational success long term. Even if your child can't speak, he/she is learning what is introduce to him/her. I would also suggest not to 'baby talk' with a child. The sooner a child is introduce to proper English (or whatever your native tongue is), the better he/she will be to learn, comprehend and master it.

Readers are Leaders

The sooner your child learns to read and comprehend, the better off he/she will be for the rest of his/her academic and professional career. You don't have to wait until your child attends pre-school or kindergarten to introduce him/her to certain academic skills. In fact, I encourage to develop your children at the faster pace than of his/her peers.

My wife and I started teaching my son before he was born. We read, converse and sang to him in the womb. When he was born, we held conversations and read to him daily. We introduced sight words with pictures before the age of 2. We created an environment conducing to learning. He's now 6 years of age, reading at a 3rd grade level. All it took was frequency, intensity and duration. Most academic activities took 15 minutes or less each day. Our babies are smarter and can learn quicker than what the experts think they can.

Tips for Parents of Toddlers & Elementary-Aged children

  • 1 to 2 yrs old - Sing nursery rhymes as well as popular (clean) songs to your child daily. Have daily conversations with him/her. Talk to them daily ('no baby talk'). Show pictures of your family and teach your children the names of aunts, uncles, grandparents, and cousins. Allow your child to play with blocks. Read to your child daily. Walk them around the house and teach them how to identify household items. Limit the time that they are on a tablet or watching TV. Time Period - 15 minutes daily (5 minutes in the morning, 5 minutes in the afternoon and 5 minutes in the early evening)

  • 2 to 3 yrs old - Introduce the alphabets (alphabet song) and numbers (1 thru 10) to him/her. Start developing your child's phonetic skills (ability to sound out words) by sounding out the letters in the alphabets. Teach how to identify basic shapes and colors. Read to your child daily. Begin teaching your picture sight words (via flashcards), 5 words weekly. Allow your child to get comfortable holding a pencil. Time Period - 20 minutes daily (10 minutes in the morning, 5 minutes in the afternoon and 5 minutes in the early evening)

  • 3 to 5 yrs old - Continue to develop your child's phonetic skills by having him/her sound out vowels, consonants, diagraph and consonant blends. Continue to teach your child how to count (1 to 20) and master sounding out the alphabets. Begin teaching him/her 25 to 50 sight words (i.e. and, the, of, but, have, etc.). Teach your child how to write with a pencil (purchase a primary handwriting tablet). Purchase posters that have various colors, shapes, vegetables and fruits (go to a teacher's depot). Continue to read and have your child begin reading pre-k and kindergarten books daily. Time Period - 20 minutes daily (10 minutes in the morning, 5 minutes in the afternoon and 5 minutes in the early evening)

By following these tips and make them a daily ritual, you will put your child ahead of his class in each grade level. Many of these tips can be performed 15 minutes daily. I'm a proponent of working ahead of what's considered the academic norm for a child. I often ask myself, 'Are you rearing an average student or a genius?' My answer is always a genius. Geniuses aren't just born, but are molded, shaped and developed. Geniuses work harder and smarter. And geniuses are usually ahead of the curb.

So the question you have to ask yourself, 'What are you rearing?'

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