EHS School Readiness Goals

Goal 1: Children will develop a secure attachment and engage in positive relationships with adults.

Goal 2: Children will begin to regulate emotions and behaviors.

Goal 3: Children will begin to participate cooperatively in a group.

Goal 4:  Children will be able to demonstrate understanding of at least 5 basic feelings in both Ojibwe and English.

Goal 5: Children will be connected to the natural world and outdoor environment.


-Build positive relationships with each child by making purposeful observations every day, being present, talking to each child respectfully, being sensitive to the child’s feelings, and validating accomplishment and progress.

- Modeling basic feelings language in both English and Ojibwe, e.g. nimbakade (I’m hungry), gidayekoz (you’re tired) , gimaanendam (you feel bad), ginishkendam (you are angry), ninjiikendam (I am happy), etc.

- Talk to children at their eye level.

- Model taking deep breaths, counting to five, or doing relaxation exercises when situations are stressful. With toddlers, talk about how you are taking deep breaths to help you relax.

- Stay nearby when babies are lying or sitting close to each other. Gently separate them if they touch each other too roughly, showing them how to be gentle.

- Take outdoor walks.  Touch the bark on the trees. Make observations out loud of the natural world.

Goal 1: Children will show interest and curiosity in exploring the world around them.

Goal 2: Children will demonstrate persistence in learning and discovery.

Goal 3: Children will learn to use words to describe what they are doing and thinking.


  • Provide one or two toys or materials at a time for young infants, exchanging them when the children’s attention diminishes.
  • Provide appropriate amounts of visual stimuli, e.g., pictures, mobiles, and signs, so children are neither over- nor under stimulated.
  • Support children’s efforts during challenging tasks by providing specific, positive verbal feedback or physical support while encouraging them to come up with solutions, e.g., “Keep turning the puzzle piece to figure out how it fits.”
  • Help the children stay focused by singing about an activity if it is helpful to the child, e.g., sing, “This is the way we stack the blocks, stack the blocks, stack the blocks…”
  • Explore the outdoor environment, e.g. take a nature walk, visit the garden observing plants, birds and animals.

Goal 1: Children will understand and begin to use ASL and /or oral language for conversations and communication.

Goal 2: Children will begin to learn and understand how print works.

Goal 3: Children will be exposed to stories, books, music, finger plays and other modes of hands on learning.

Goal 4: Children will be exposed to Ojibwe sentences and songs.


  • Provide many opportunities for children to learn about diverse symbols and their functions, such as language, gestures, letters, numerals, photographs, drawings, models, maps, graphs, webs, and video images.
  • Provide books appropriate for the age and abilities of the child, e.g., chubby, cardboard, and cloth books for infants and toddlers.
  • Point to pictures during story reading, calling attention to what the pictures mean.
  • Incorporate Ojibwe sentences and songs throughout the day by discussing what children see and do.

Goal 1: Children will begin to use math concepts during daily routines and experiences.

Goal 2: Children will use their senses to explore the environment, how things work and how they can make things happen, discovering what people and objects do.

Goal 3: Children will begin to develop and show the ability to remember and connect new experiences and information with prior knowledge.


  • Provide familiar and common objects in the classroom and discuss their uses during play.
  • Provide cause and effect toys and experiences.
  • Provide nesting toys and use language where things are in relation to each other, e.g. in, on, under, up, down.
  • Recite finger plays or rhymes and sing songs about numbers in both Ojibwe and English. Read stories that include numerals and items to count. Include counting children and objects during transitions and routines.
  • Involve children in “Remember when…” games and discussions, e.g., ask, “Do you remember the elephant we saw at the zoo yesterday?” Talk with toddlers about events in the immediate past.
  • Compare items and groups of items. Discuss which are bigger, smaller, more or less, etc.

Goal 1: Children will gain control of large muscles for moving and balancing.

Goal 2: Children will gain control of small muscles for exploring and manipulation.

Goal 3: Children will begin to show healthy and safe habits which promotes healthy development.


  • Create a protected space for young infants to explore movement safely while lying on their stomachs and backs and offer toddlers appropriate means for movement around building, e.g., bug rope, walking feet.
  • Provide push toys, e.g., toy shopping carts and doll strollers, in the classroom and outside to help children who are learning to walk maintain balance.
  • Play music during movement activities. Incorporate dances that may be familiar to families in your program. Model, describe and suggest ways for children to respond to music by using a variety of movements.
  • Offer activities that strengthen infants’ and toddlers’ hand grasp, e.g., transferring an object from one hand to another, pulling scarves from a hole cut in a box.
  • Include activities for twos that require using two hands together, e.g., tearing paper, opening and closing containers, using wind-up toys.
  • Introducing healthy day to day self-care habits, e.g., handwashing, tooth brushing.
  • Go for a walk.
  • Connect the physical task of toileting to the social emotional needs of the child through gentle touch, conversation-describing actions (sing songs; make eye contact; building relationship and connection).