Get Them on Track for Kindergarten

PREP Chicago's School-Readiness Sessions

ready for preschool!

Everything you need to know you learned in kindergarten — except what to do when you’re trying to get your child into kindergarten.

That’s why there’s PREP Chicago. The program readies preschoolers and their parents for the application, testing, and enrollment process for private and public Chicago schools. In parent sessions, you’ll learn about the options (magnet, charter, gifted, classical, etc.) and get insider tips on interviews and the dizzying wait-list process.

If you really want to buckle down, enroll your 4-year-old in student sessions, where he’ll be tutored on skills needed to succeed on entrance exams given when you apply for CPS Selective Enrollment Schools (sequencing, letter and number recognition, basic addition). Even if you’re the kind of parent who doesn’t get manic about landing the perfect school, there are aspects of the curriculum you’ll appreciate (teachers working to sharpen listening and direction following, for example).

It’s all worth adding to the crib sheet.

PREP Chicago (312-834-7737 or prepchicago.com). Sessions begin on September 10 at Sheil Park, 3505 North Southport Avenue, at Cornelia Avenue. A twelve-week session is $600; individual sessions are $20-$40.

backpacks!Gear up before the back-to-school rush with our picks for the best backpacks and lunch boxes.

this week in chicago!

Magic Mondays on Oak Street
The Great Scott has tricks (and balloon artistry) up his sleeve.
Why: Abracadabra! Your boredom has vanished.
When: Today, 11 a.m.-noon. (Also Aug. 15, 22 & 29.)
Where: Esquire Theater, 58 E. Oak St., b/t Rush St. & Michigan Ave., in front.

Summer Story Time
Sprightly storytellers from Emerald City Theatre Company read books, teach crafts, and lead drama games.
Why: It’s a great morning cooldown.
When: Sat., 11 a.m.
Where: Open Books, 213 W. Institute Pl., at Franklin St. (312-475-1355 ext. 100). Admission is free.

Wrigleyville Summerfest
Kick back with live music and food while the kids go nuts in the inflatable zone.
Why: Get mileage out of outdoor fest season.
When: Sat., noon-10 p.m.; Sun., 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
Where: 3300 N. Seminary Ave., at School St. (773-665-4682). Admission is $5.

Photo: Andrew Rich / Getty Images

Wrigleyville Summerfest
3300 N Seminary Ave
@ School St
Chicago, IL 60657
Sheil Park
3505 N Southport Ave
@ Cornelia Ave
Chicago, IL 60657
Esquire Theater
58 E Oak St
bt Rush St & Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
213 W Institute Pl
@ N Franklin St
Chicago, IL 60610
312-475-1355 ext 100