Preschool IEP Goals and Objectives

To hold public schools accountable for the education special needs students were receiving, the government passed the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, or IDEA. One of the requirements of this is act is that schools must provide each special education student with an IEP or an Individualized Education Program. IEPs contain important and specific information that guides the teacher on how to instruct a student with a special needs. When preparing Preschool IEP goals and objectives, it is important to remember each child is different. Take the time to get to know and understand the student. Then the student needs to be tested and observed. After the IEP is written it must be implemented. This can sometimes be a difficult task. Listed below are some IEP objectives and ideas on how to put them into practice.


Autism is a newer diagnosable disability and because of that not too much is known about it. Researchers are not sure what causes autism nor do they have a cure. The number of children affected by autism is creeping higher. Children begin to show signs of autism at an early age. That is why it is crucial for preschool teachers to know the signs of autism and how deal with a child who is autistic. Providing the teacher with IEP objectives for the autistic child is a good start to supplying that child with the best education possible. Children with autism often struggle with routine, social skills, and controlling emotions. If these children are made to develop these skills at an early age, they have better chance of learning how to deal with these potential road blocks. Therefore, working on these goals make a good start to a preschool IEP for an autistic child.

Objective: The student will be able to follow a schedule. Activity: Have the student make a picture schedule to follow. Print off pictures of the student’s schedule. Allow the student to color the pictures. Then have the student glue the pictures onto a piece of poster board. Laminate the poster board. Each time the student switches to a new activity teach the student to go and look at his schedule to see what is next.

Objective: The student will be able to express his anger in a proper manner. Activity: Have the student act out different situations that make him angry. For example, if someone telling him, “No you can’t play with the blocks right now.” makes him angry, have him act out the situation, and talk about how he should respond.

Objective: The student will be able to express his need for help. Activity: Give the student a green laminated card and a red laminated card. When the student does not need any help he has the green card sitting out, but when he encounters a problem he sets out the red card.

Mental Retardation

There are different types of mental retardation. The severity is different with each situation. Unfortunately, some people have the idea that students with mental retardation are incapable of learning. That is a very false accusation. These students are capable of learning with proper education. They are in need of a teacher who is well trained and understands that each student learns differently. They also are need early intervention. Any preschooler with mental retardation requires an IEP with corresponding activities.

Objective: The student’s motor skills will improve. Activity: Have the student work puzzles with big knobs on them. The student holds the knob while trying to place the piece in its spot. This helps with hand eye coordination. Also have the student do the Hokey Pokey. This helps to improve motor skills all over the body.

Objective: The student will develop self care habits. Activity: Have the student brush her teeth everyday after lunch.

Objective: The student will convey feelings in an appropriate way. Activity: When a student with mental retardation becomes frustrated, she will sometimes harm herself or others. Show her an alternate way to express that frustration. For example, have her clench her fists or clap her hands.

Speech Impairment

Speech impairment is probably the most common disability found in preschoolers. With early intervention, many children’s speech can be corrected. Preschoolers with speech impairments who get the appropriate assistance do not fall far behind their peers. To be sure these students are getting the accurate education, an IEP is necessary.

Objective: The student will be able to describe actions. Activity: Show the student pictures of people doing some kind of action, have the student explain to you what the person in the picture is doing.

Objective: The student will be able to rhyme words. Activity: Play a game of Candy Land using rhyming words. First make index cards with words on them. Before each turn, the students draw an index card, and thinks of a word to rhyme with the word on the card.

Objective: The student will be able to answer who, what, where questions. Activity: Read a preschool level book to the student. Discuss who, what, and where scenarios within the book. Then ask the student who, what, and where questions about the book.


There have been many advancements made for people who are blind or deaf with modern technology. These advancements teamed with early intervention allow children who are blind or deaf to learn coping skills that will allow them to live a “normal” life. That is why it is pertinent to make sure these preschoolers are being taught the skills needed to be successful. That is why an individualized and successful IEP is so important.

Objective: The student will be able to complete a sequence of two events. Activity: Give the student two short concise directions. For example, tell the student to draw a circle, and then draw a line.

Objective: The student will be able to respond to his peers. Activity: Place students in the block center together. Instruct them to work together to build the tallest building they can without it falling over.

Objective: The student will be able to increase his use of sign language. Activity: Read a short book to the student using sign language. Then have the student try to sign the book.

Special needs preschool students need IEP goals and objectives to help them achieve success in their education. Before writing the IEP, teachers should get to know the student, test the student, and observe the student. When implementing the IEP preschool teachers need to offer activities that will not only enrich the student but also encourage the student‘s desire to learn more.