Pre-kindergarten curriculums usually emphasize preparation for school. Object lessons, or learning by discovery, does play an essential role in pre-kindergarten, but teachers also emphasize social skills necessary in kindergarten. These skills might include teaching children to raise their hands before speaking, to stay in line while waiting for a turn, or to stay in their seats when required. Pre-kindergarten also stresses listening and reading readiness skills. By the end of the school year, most pre-kindergarten students can recite the alphabet, count to ten, can recognize their own names, and follow simple directions. From a social standpoint, pre-k (pre-kay) students are expected to express themselves with words when interacting with other students or the teacher, take care of toilet needs independently, share with others, and dress themselves. There are privately- and publicly-sponsored programs available, and these schools may differ drastically in the format they use to achieve common objectives. If you're considering a pre-kindergarten program for your child, consult with the school's director before enrolling to determine if your child will benefit from the type of program offered.