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OPS At Home Learning: Early Childhood

Grade level resources

Oral Language

Select one or more activities to do each day.


Understanding New Words – By giving details about new words or explaining what words mean, you build your child’s understanding of new words. For example, if you are playing with cars and introduce the word “passenger”, you might say something like “A passenger is someone who rides in a car or a bus or a train. A passenger goes for the ride but doesn’t drive the car or the bus.” Relating new words to your child’s personal experiences also helps him connect with new words. For example, if you are talking about the word “nervous,” you might say something like “Remember when you started preschool – you felt nervous? But eventually, when you were more comfortable there, you didn’t feel nervous anymore. 


Actions can speak louder than words – If you accompany your words with actions, gestures, or facial expressions, it will help your child understand the meaning of the words. For example, when modeling the word “weary”, you could do a sleeping action (hands under your head) or yawn so that your child understands what the word means. Your voice can also add meaning to a word. For example, if you say the word “frightened” or “terrified” with a shaky voice that sounds like you are scared, it will help your child understand what you mean. 





  • “Five is an essential benchmark number for young children.  A strong understanding of five will contribute to children’s understanding of ten, another significant benchmark number in our number system.” Ma (1999) and Van de Walle and Lovin (2006).  To really understand five, children need to learn that there are other numbers inside of 5 (4. 3. 2, and 1).  There are different combinations or ways to make a set of five. 
  • Help your child really understand the concept of five.  Using five household objects such as cereal, buttons, coins, etc., experiment with the number five.
  • Ask your child to count out five items.  Separate the five into two groups 4 and 1.  Ask your child, “We have four how many more do we need to make 5?”  “That’s right, we need one more, because 5 is just one more than 4.  Five comes right after 4 when we count.  Count the items, 1,2,3,4,5.  Five comes right after 4, it is just one more.” Do the same with other ways to make 5, such as 3 and 2, 5 and 0.  With time and practice, your child will start to really know what 5 means. 


Social Emotional


Social emotional skill is the ability to interact with others and regulate your emotions.  Working on these skills will also help a child be successful in school and life. 

  •  During the summer, continue to support children in cleaning up around the house. This helps with personal responsibility. It’s easy to become more relaxed during this time but keep up the expectation that children continue to clean up after themselves.
  •  Make homemade popsicles to share with friends and family.  To make homemade popsicles, all you need is juice or Kool-Aid and a container to put in the freezer.  You can use a small baking tin, paper or plastic cups, ice cube trays or small yogurt containers. Just pour and freeze.  Sharing yummy food can bring people together and will help put a smile on someone's face.   



Early Literacy



Comprehension is the ability to understand and make sense of the things that we see, read, and hear in the world around us.  Comprehension is the main purpose for reading.  We read to get the information from the printed words.  

As you read with your child, help her to focus on comprehending the information in the book.  Before, during and after reading, help your child to think about what she knows, believes, experiences or feels, and how that relates to what she is seeing or hearing, as you read. 

Before Reading: 

What do you think this book is going to be about?  Let’s read the words and look at the pictures to help us. 

During Reading: 

What is happening now?   

Why did that happen? 

What do you think will happen next? 

After Reading: 

Help your child think about what the author or illustrator wants you to know or learn. 

What did this book teach us? 

How did this book make you feel and why? 

What was your favorite part and why? 

What was the book mostly about? 


Gross and Fine Motor


A Gross motor skill is the coordination of large muscle movements needed to assist in balance and stability.  These skills are used to sit, crawl, walk, stand, and run.  

Gross motor skills are important to develop in early childhood in order to access and complete necessary daily activities. 

  • Play the game Twister.  Don’t have the game? You can make your own home-made version by using large butcher paper or a large piece of cardboard.  Draw on circles in various colors about the size of your hand and then space them evenly apart.  Play by shouting out a color and right hand, left hand, right foot, left foot. This is also a great way for kids to learn their right from their left.

  • Go on a daily family walk around the neighborhood. Set a goal each day for each family member to get up and move. Track how many days each family member participated in walking around the block or neighborhood. 

A fine motor skill is the coordination of small muscle movements needed to complete tasks. These skills are important to develop in early childhood in order to access and successfully complete necessary daily activities. 

  • Make paper airplanes using different types of paper you have around the house.  Fly your planes inside and out. Have a contest for which plane can fly the furthest and the fastest. Use this website to create your own paper airplane:

  • Practice tying shoes.  Tying shoes is a great idea and skill to work on over the summer. This skill really comes in handy and will help with finger agility and strength. 


Omaha Public Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, age, genetic information, citizenship status, or economic status in its programs, activities and employment and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following individual has been designated to address inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Superintendent of Schools, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (402-557-2001).

Las Escuelas Públicas de Omaha no discriminan basados en la raza, color, origen nacional, religión, sexo, estado civil, orientación sexual, discapacidad , edad, información genética, estado de ciudadanía, o estado económico, en sus programas, actividades y empleo, y provee acceso equitativo a los “Boy Scouts” y a otros grupos juveniles designados. La siguiente persona ha sido designada para atender estas inquietudes referentes a las pólizas de no discriminación: El Superintendente de las Escuelas, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (402-557-2001).