It's time for Kindergarten screening again. Cut Bank Schools will have their screening Wednesday, April 4 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Call 873-5513 to arrange an appointment. I remember taking my girls to the screening two years in a row, first when they were four, but I'm not sure what they recommend now, so I'd call the number and ask them if you're unsure whether your child it old enough.
It's been a while since I took a little one to the screening, so I thought I would see if I could find a site with the basics of kindergarten screening to help those of you who might be doing this for the very first time. According to Nannette Richards in her article on Yahoo Voices, "Kindergarten Screening: What Your Preschooler Needs to Know to Be Kindergarten Ready" here's what you're up against:

Basic Kindergarten Readiness Skills

Self Help skills
Manage bathroom needs without assistance
Can button and zip own clothes
Tie shoes (or learning to)
Can wash and dry own hands

Gross Motor Skills
Can hop, jump, and skip
Can stand/hop on one foot
Can throw and catch a big ball
Can kick a big ball
Has a dominant hand and foot
Can climb stairs with alternating feet

Fine Motor Skills
Can use eating utensils without assistance
Can cut with safety scissors
Can hold and use a pencil
Can trace a line
Can draw a circle, a cross, and a square
Can draw a person with 5 body parts

Expressive and Receptive Language
Speaks in complete sentences
Speech is understandable to adults
Can follow two step directions
Understand relational vocabulary (over/under, up/down, first/last, before/after)
Responds to basic requests

Can match two like pictures in a set of five pictures
Classifies objects by shape, color, and size
Recognizes and can repeat a simple patterning sequence
Can put three story pictures in the proper order.
Understands basic concepts of time (morning, afternoon, night time)
Can count to 10 by rote
Can identify and count groups of objects (up to 5)
Can retell a simple story
Can put together a simple 4 piece puzzle
Can identify five (5) colors
Can identify simple shapes (circle, square, triangle)
Recognizes own name in print
Can identify letters in own name
Recognizes some letters
Knows some letter sounds
Understands that letters form words and represent a story or ideas
Knows how to "read" a book (right side up, print is left to right)

They are really looking for serious developmental problems, so chances are your child will be more than ready. Kindergarten should be fun and not stressful, so try not to get too worried about what happens at the screening. Remember your little one will pick up on any anxiety from a parent.