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How to Prepare your Toddler for Preschool

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preschool hand crafts

Get your child familiar with preschool toys and tools

Attending preschool marks the beginning of a new phase in your child’s life. As a parent, approaching this major milestone may be exciting and nerve-wracking. Your toddler may also be feeling a mix of emotions. While this transition to preschool is not easy, there are many things about preschool to look forward to. Help your little one prepare for this big step. Make the transition as smooth as possible by using  these simple tips and tricks.

Use pretend play

Make the idea of preschool more fun and exciting for your child by using pretend play. Take turns in playing the role of a child, parent and teacher. Act out the routines that are going to take place when preschool starts. For example, act out saying goodbye to mommy and daddy before leaving for school. Act out being in a classroom, interacting with teacher and peers, reading books, toddlers playing and having fun while learning. This activity will help your toddler with what they will experience in preschool.

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Tips on How to Choose a Great Summer Camp Program in Tucson

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Summer vacation means more free time for your little ones. For some children, this is a time to play and have fun. For others, it’s an opportunity to learn new skills and hone their studies.

As a parent, you want your kids to make the most of their summer vacation. And an excellent child care option you can consider are summer camps.

Summer camps can benefit your child in more ways than one. They can help in a child’s short-term and long-term development. They provide plenty of opportunities for children to have fun while developing certain skills.

Thinking about sending your little one to a camp during summer vacation? Here are some great tips to help you in choosing the best summer camp program.

Don’t overlook the fine points

little boy fishing

Make sure to choose a summer program with interesting activities

While there are several things to consider when choosing the right summer program, it’s important you don’t take the fine points for granted. It is true that the facilities, location, safety and activities are crucial things to consider. But, it is equally important to look beneath the surface of a summer program.

Good summer programs provide opportunities for children to learn new things about themselves. They are given the opportunities to explore unique and unfamiliar activities. When searching for a summer camp program, look for a program that can influence your child’s future.

It could be something which will nurture their personal growth and development. Or it could be something that will help them get a college admission, land a dream internship, and so on. Since this information is not something you can usually get from brochures, it would be best to conduct research.

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6 Things Your Child Will Learn in our Tucson Preschool

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Do you have a little one heading to preschool? If so, this is an exciting phase for you and your child! The first years in school as a preschooler are crucial. This is when the foundations of child growth and development are formed. That’s why you need a child care center which offers a preschool program that will equip them for the future.

At The Apple Tree Learning Centers, we focus on the brain development of your child. We make sure to pay attention to their emotional needs as well.

Our amazing and experienced staff create a nurturing environment which encourages children to learn. This environment also inspires them to express themselves, explore and use their natural talents.

Sending your child to a preschool is a significant milestone for them.

Here are six important skills your child will learn in our Tucson preschool.

Tucson preschool

Preschools allow kids to learn through play

Numbers and pre-Math skills

One of the first and most important skills your preschooler learn in our Tucson preschool are the foundations of Mathematics. They will learn about numbers and be able to identify what the numerals look like. Children are taught how to count from one to ten. As soon as they advance, they will also be taught how to count up to twenty. This is done by having them memorize the order of numbers as they count objects.


Learning the alphabet takes more than just singing the ABC song. What your kids learn at The Apple Tree Learning Centers is how letters correspond with sounds. Then they learn how they go together to form words.

They learn to recognize both uppercase and lowercase letters. Eventually, they are able to recognize their own name and write it! These lessons are all vital because they are the foundation of their pre-reading skills.

Imaginative and cooperative play

Because most kids at preschool age love to play, a play-based approach is also used in our Tucson preschool. Playing truly is a learning experience for children. Playing can also be productive. In fact, it is through playing that your preschooler develops their sense of self, and practices their problem-solving skills. It helps them use their imagination, and develop better social skills.

Colors and shapes

Tucson preschool

Kids learn their first ABC’s in preschool

Our Tucson preschool will also be teaching your kids how to identify and name colors. They will learn about different shapes as well, which is going to be useful when they study Geometry. Learning about colors and shapes are essential in your kid’s language development and creativity.

Fine and gross motor skills

Preschool is the best time for kids to learn, develop and strengthen fine motor skills. This is when they are fine-tuning their finger strength and their pincer grip. They also practice this a lot through sensory play and making arts and crafts.

Gross motor skills, as well as coordination, are best learned in preschool as well. There are several activities which develop your child’s gross motor skills, including dancing and other outdoor activities.


In our Tucson preschool, we believe your little ones need to learn how to be independent as early as possible.  This helps them be better prepared when they proceed to kindergarten. At The Apple Tree Learning Centers, they learn how to cooperate with their teachers and classmates. There will also be plenty of group activities which encourage their active participation. These interactive group activities teach them how to follow simple instructions.

They will be able to communicate more effectively without having to rely on their parents to speak for them. They’ll feel more confident and independent when their parents are not around. Your child will also feel more comfortable about approaching and making new friends.  Being more independent helps your child connect and play with their classmates.

If you are looking for a nurturing and engaging preschool in Tucson for your child, consider The Apple Tree Learning Centers. Focused on early child development, our educational preschool program is tailored to the needs of your kid. Our learning activities and opportunities are all geared towards ensuring a holistic growth for your preschooler. See you soon!  

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7 Ways Summer School Helps Prepare Your Child for Kindergarten

| Admin

The jump from preschool to Kindergarten can be jarring for your little one. Summer school is a good way to ease the transition. The best thing you can do for your child is to allow them to continue their learning through the summer months. This will go a long way in preparing your child for Kindergarten.

Summer enrichment at a reputable Kindergarten prep program such as The Apple Tree Learning Centers has been proven to improve school performance, help with social development, and keep them excited to learn!

Here are 7 ways that a summer enrichment program prepares your child for Kindergarten.

1. Ride the Momentum of The School Year

Learning should not stop just because the school year is over. Throughout the school year your child has established a learning routine. There is no reason to let that momentum crash. A summer of learning will give your child an advantage going into Kindergarten.

2. A Summer School Program Introduces Children to a More Structured School Environment

Kindergarten prep | The Apple Tree Learning Centers

Summer school introduces school structure

Kindergarten classrooms require more of children than preschool does. A summer program introduces your child to the new environment and what will be expected of him or her.

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11 Ways to Prepare Your Child for Kindergarten

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I remember those days when I couldn’t believe all the hype I heard about how to prepare your child for Kindergarten. After all, this is not first grade, my friends! I only wish I knew then what I know now. I’ve now discovered eleven ways you can prepare your child while having fun along the way.

Listening Skills

With all there is to absorb, it’s natural to repeat instructions to Kindergartners numerous times. You can prepare your child for Kindergarten readiness by giving simple, three step directions. For example, ask your child to put up toys, wash hands, and then come to the dinner table. Also, teach your little one what interruptions are, and model this as a parent. Your child’s teacher will thank you!


Kindergarten readiness activities | The Apple Tree Learning Center in Tucson

Teach your child to share

Socialization and play are important kindergarten readiness activities, and having to share with a large group may be a new challenge for your child. If you haven’t already, participate in playgroups, set playdates, or join children groups to let them experience taking turns with others.

Standing in Line

Although this seems like a simple task, it’s sometimes a challenge. Explain the difference between behind and beside by walking with your child and demonstrating how to stay in line. Behind and beside are also prepositions students will learn during Kindergarten, so you’ll be getting two for one!

Critical Thinking

Developing critical thinking skills in children should start at an early age. The earlier your child learns these skills , the more natural this way of thinking will become. By explaining cause and effect, predicting, and justifying, your child will be ahead of the game. Here are some critical thinking activities you can implement at home:

  • While reading, have your child infer what is happening by looking for clues, ask why a character is acting a particular way, and suggest creating another ending to the story.
  • Take a walk outside to discuss cause and effect, because it’s all around us in nature. For example, because it’s spring, the flowers are blooming. Go a step further by asking a prediction about what will happen when winter rolls around again.
  • Ask your child whether something is a good or bad idea, and have him or her justify with supporting details.

Critical thinking skills are highly encouraged at Tucson preschools. For additional critical thinking ideas, click here. You can learn even more about how to develop these skills in children by clicking here.

Reading Aloud

Take a trip to the library to locate good literature, or check online for suggested book titles. Teach your child about the cover, title, author, illustrator, and read to them fluently. Also, make inferences, predictions, and connections together to incorporate more critical thinking.


In addition to learning the alphabet song, have fun using magnetic letters, dry erase markers, sand writing, finger painting letters. The more hands-on, the better!

Letter Sounds

In addition to identifying letters, start teaching the sounds of vowels and consonants. To help your child learn short and long sounds at home, use flash cards or explore educational websites.

Picture Clues

Critical thinking activities for preschoolers | The Apple Tree Learning Center in Tucson

Teach your child to read

This can’t be emphasized enough for little ones! While reading aloud to your child, search for clues that match the words read. Does the word make sense when you look at the picture? This is a necessary strategy that early readers will need to learn.


Have fun using jelly beans, candy, or cereal as manipulative tools to teach your child how to count. Add or remove to teach addition and subtraction, and divide into colors to teach sorting.

Shapes Around Us

Make it relevant! Take a walk around your home to identify shapes of furniture and other items. Next, compare and identify things in nature by walking around outside to discover a wide variety of shapes.


Finally, as much as we may want to hover over our precious children, teaching them to accept responsibility should begin now. Let them help you at home, provide routine and structure, and teach consequences. This will help your child develop a since of responsibility for their own actions.

Critical thinking activities for preschoolers are highly encouraged to help make your child’s first school year a successful one. At Tuscan preschool, there are creative opportunities that develop critical thinking skills in children and serve as stepping stones for Kindergarten readiness. Please contact us to explore our engaging learning programs that will prepare your child for Kindergarten!

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Kindergarten – The first step to unlimited possibilities!

| Admin
The Apple Tree Learning Centers Prek-Chart

Here is why Pre-K is so important!

What can you do to help your child succeed in kindergarten?

You can take many steps to help your child prepare for kindergarten.

Here are some examples we implement here at The Apple Tree Learning Centers:

• Keep your child healthy. Ensure that your child eats healthy foods, gets plenty of sleep and visits the doctor on a regular basis. Before the start of kindergarten, make sure your child has had a recent physical exam and is up to date on immunizations.

• Develop routines. Choose regular times for your child to eat, play and sleep each day. This will help your child know what to expect and what’s expected from him or her.

• Encourage the development of basic skills. Work with your child to help him or she recognize letters, numbers, colours and shapes.

• Read, rhyme and play games with your child. Make reading a daily family activity. Rhyming and playing with your child also are important for his or her development.

• Expose your child to learning experiences. Look for opportunities to broaden your child’s horizons, such as preschool. Take your child to the museum or enrol him or her in community art or science programs.

• Encourage socialization. Promote your child’s social development by signing him or her up for group activities and inviting friends to go on outings. Encourage your child to share, express his or her feelings, practice taking turns, and follow simple directions.

• Talk about kindergarten. Build enthusiasm and lessen anxiety by explaining what your child’s routine might be like in kindergarten. Before school begins, take him or her to the school and, if possible, check out the classroom. Get your child involved in shopping for school clothes.

The Apple Tree Learning Centers Kinder-Prep

Are there benefits to delaying a child’s enrollment in kindergarten?

Some parents choose to delay a child’s entrance into kindergarten, believing that a child can gain an advantage in academics, athletics or social settings by being older than average for his or her grade. This is also common among boys who have birthdays near the cutoff date — with parents believing their child needs more time to mature.

However, research suggests that children who are old enough for kindergarten but postpone enrollment for one year don’t perform any better than children who enter at the usual age — particularly if the child remains in an environment where readiness wasn’t being fostered. In addition, other studies show that a child who is old for his or her grade is at higher risk of behaviour problems during adolescence.