The Mt. Lebanon School District offers a half-day kindergarten program which provides opportunities for children to grow cognitively, physically, socially, and emotionally. Every content area is begun in kindergarten with specific goals and objectives geared to the different developmental levels of the children. Per District Policy JEB, children who reach the age of five before September 8th or the first student day of school (whichever occurs later) are eligible to enter kindergarten in September of that school year. Parents are encouraged to notify the school of their child’s eligibility for the kindergarten program. A birth certificate or passport and evidence of basic immunization must be presented before a child’s entrance to school. New entrants to kindergarten must be enrolled prior to the end of the first two weeks of school, transfer students excepted.
Parents may pick up their child's kindergarten registration packet for the 2018-19 school year beginning February 1st, 2018 at their home school.
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Pennsylvania law requires that all students show proof of immunization before attending any school in the Commonwealth. Kindergarten or 1st grade students entering school for the first time are required to show proof of the following immunizations:
4 doses required, 1 dose to be given on or after the 4th birthday; 3 doses, if series started after 7 years of age
3 doses required
2 doses required
2 dose required
1 dose required
3 doses required, properly spaced
2 doses of varicella (chickenpox) vaccine
Each of Mt. Lebanon's elementary schools holds a Kindergarten Orientation for parents and incoming students in the spring. Preschoolers have an opportunity to meet the teachers and visit the classrooms while the building principal and staff speak to the parents. The presentation includes a comprehensive overview of the kindergarten program and the wide spectrum of services available in the school.
This year’s orientation at each building will be held on May 4th 2018, at 9:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.
Every entering kindergarten student will be given a short screening interview in late spring to assess basic skills to aid parents and teachers to student placement. This tool is used just as a baseline of student knowledge.
Kindergarten interviews will be held on the first two days of school. These interviews are a wonderful opportunity for each student to individually meet the teacher and get acquainted with the classroom prior to the official first day of kindergarten. We have found that the interviews greatly help to reduce anxiety on "the big day" as the children have an idea of what to expect. Please feel free to bring your camera if you would like to take a few pictures! Please note that the first official day of Kindergarten will fall on the third school day for grades 1 through 5.
You will be receiving a letter in August with your child's scheduled interview date and time. We are looking forward to meeting you and your child at the interview!
- At the beginning of the day, students go to their location to put away their belongings and then come into the classroom. We listen to the morning announcements and say the "Pledge of Allegiance" followed by a patriotic song. We then move to the carpet to begin our daily activities.
- Next, we focus on the calendar to introduce math concepts that range from recognizing and quantifying numbers to making a pattern. The ongoing counting line and clip collection help to build an understanding of number sense and place value over the course of the year.
- From there, we begin working on phonemic awareness, which is the ability to discriminate individual sounds and then to "manipulate" those sounds by either taking apart the sounds in a word or putting the sounds together to form a word. These lessons, which are part of the Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Journeys language arts program, will introduce phonemic awareness skills in a systematic sequence that introduces and then continues to review these skills in a progression over the school year and on into first grade.
- A selection of literature follows. Students are exposed to a variety of genres of literature. As we read, students learn to identify setting and characters, recognize the beginning/middle/end of a story, and to make predictions as they read.
- Learning Centers are a favorite part of the day. The learning activities provided are often related to the theme of the language arts program. On a typical day, various centers may be available to students. One of those centers is always teacher-facilitated, where we provide differentiated instruction in a small-group setting. Other activities may include computers, iPads, imaginative play, fine-motor activities (i.e. LEGOS), large-motor activities (i.e. block building), and an art center. Students not only learn many important academic concepts during center activities, but they also are learning and practicing many important social skills that are a natural outcome of this more informal time of instruction.
- The Writers' Workshop has three components. First, the whole class works together on a shared mini-lesson with the teacher that is designed to teach and model some facet of the writing process (i.e. sounding out words or using a period). Second, after participating in writing a group story, the students go to the tables and write an individual piece of work. Lastly, the students may volunteer to share their writing with the class during the Author's Chair segment of the lesson. Because it is totally normal for kindergarteners to vary widely in their individual development in all areas, including writing, there is also wide variation in how they use emergent writing to put their words onto paper.
- Recess provides an opportunity for large-muscle activities as well as important social interaction.
- Math Workshop is structured very similarly to Writers' Workshop. Typically, the teacher introduces the lesson to the whole group. Students then work cooperatively with their classmates either in pairs or in small groups while the teacher monitors their progress. After the children have completed the investigation activity, the teacher facilitates a discussion where the students are challenged to answer questions that encourage them to think, reason, and share their mathematical ideas.
- Social Living exposes students to the world around them. Students learn about cultures in other parts of the world as well as selected events in our country's history.
- Science lessons provide hands-on opportunities for students to study trees throughout the seasons. We also study the Wetlands and pond life in the spring.
- Music and Movement are also incorporated into various activities throughout the day. We sing songs throughout the day and work on gross motor skills through various activities such as sight word jumping jacks. Art projects are also integrated into our thematic units.
- We end each day by summarizing and reflecting on the day's activities and getting ready for dismissal.
As the parents of an incoming kindergarten student, you most likely have many questions - especially if this is your first child. We hope that the information provided here helps to answer some of these questions.
- The toys in the classroom have been selected to provide the students with not only particular academic objectives, but also with opportunities for important lessons in sharing and taking turns. Please have your child leave his or her toys at home. Problems arise when things from home get lost or become a cause for disagreement. Students will have opportunities later in the year for Show-and-Tell. Also, please limit fashion accessories such as bracelets or necklaces that may be a distraction.
- Please tie shoes in double-knots.
- Please Label all of your child's belongings with his or her name.
- Field trips are planned to coincide with our curriculum. We take one fieldtrip in the fall and one in the spring. A field trip permission form will be sent home prior to all field trips.
- Kindly send a written note to school following your child's absence so that it can mark it as "excused."
- Kindergarten students will recieve report cards twice a year. You will recieve the first report card in January and the final report card in June.
- Kindergarten conferences are offered once a year. These conferences are held in November. Although you will not be recieving an official report card at this time, the teacher will share samples of your child's work and discuss his/her progress. You will also have the opportunity to discuss any concerns you may have regarding your child.
- Open House is a wonderful opportunity for the whole family to come to school in the evening to see the classrooms and other areas of the school. The children are always so excited to show you their work! This event is now held in the spring.
For additional readiness information:
We are looking forward to working with you and your children as we begin a new school year! The following information is intended to help you have a smooth transition into kindergarten in Mt. Lebanon School District.
Each day, your child should bring a backpack to school along with a folder for notices and other papers. Please check this folder daily.
Drop-off and Pick-up
Your child's teacher will explain procedures for dropping off and picking up your child at your neighborhood elementary school. Please note that the morning kindergarten session is from 8:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. The afternoon session begins at 12:45 p.m. and ends at 3:30 p.m.
We have outdoor recess daily (weather-permitting). If your child wishes to play on the playground equipment, he or she will need to have on sneaker-stlye shoes.
The class will visit the library one day out of the five day cycle. Because library will not fall on the same day each week, we recommend keeping the library book in your child's backpack when he/she is finished reading it at home.
At dismissal time, the class will exit promptly at 11:15 a.m. (3:30 p.m. for afternoon kindergarten). It is a good idea to stand in the same spot so that your child can easily find you. If you are going to be late, please notify the office and your child will wait there. Please provide your plans for bringing and picking up your child. Should your plans change on any given day, we ask that you email us or write a note with the alternate arrangements in advance.
Please stop in the office for a Visitor's Pass when you are scheduled to volunteer in the classroom or meet with the teacher. Thank you!
Students entering kindergarten should be able to:
- share and understand the concept of taking turns
- cooperate and play well with others
- sit still and listen to an entire story
- attend to a task for at least 10 minutes
- speak and ask for what they need
- recognize their own name and answer to it
- help to pick up and put away materials after an activity is finished
- use the toilet independently
- play by themselves for a short period of time
- be away from parents for a brief period and understand that they will come back
You are your child's FIRST and MOST IMPORTANT teacher! To get your child ready for kindergarten, the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that parents do the following (which we are confident you are already doing):
- teach new skills through familiar activities (i.e. counting, sorting)
- set behavioral limits and be consistent with discipline
- encourage your child to accept responsibility for hygiene, dressing, and cleaning up
- provide your child with a well-balanced diet
- set a specific bedtime
- provide opportunities for indoor and outdoor play
- take time each day to listen to your child about his/her day
- encourage your child to draw and practice writing his/ her name
- read to your child every day
When emergencies such as weather conditions or power failures require the delay of closing of school, notice is given as early as possible. Typically when school is canceled, after-school activities and evening activities are not conducted.
AM KINDERGARTEN WILL REMAIN IN SESSION UNTIL 12:00 PM ON THE DAYS STUDENTS HAVE A 10:00 AM START and PM KINDERGARTEN WILL NOT REPORT TO SCHOOL UNTIL 1:00 PM.
If your child is enrolled in the a.m. session and attends the JCC program in the afternoon, he or she will need to be dismissed at 11:15 a.m. for busing purposes. In this case, we ask that you send in a note stating that your child has an early dismissal that day.
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