Kindergarten Readiness — The Bump
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Kindergarten Readiness

HI - Just looking for some thoughts on those that have been there.  My 4 year old is currently in an excellent PreK program through the public school.  This is a full day, 5 day a week program.  This is very much a kindergarten readiness program and not a preschool and I can already see how much my DD has learned since she started the week before Labor Day.  Some back history - my DD was born with a brain injury but has no issues that we notice other than a major speech delay.  She is in therapy through the school (also had it last winter).  She is having a hard time making new friends since the kids are having a hard time understanding her - she is slowing making a few friends and the kids are great with her - one of the boys that she is there with in the morning before the other kids arrive always looks after her (at a party this weekend he kept coming and checking on her - he was held back and is a year and a half older than my DD).  She often prefers to play alone though her teachers have told me she is starting to play with the kids more often but mostly inside, not when on the playground.  She is a June birthday and the 3rd youngest child in class. 

She is doing great educationally, socially I am still a little worried (she has been in daycare/preschool since 12 weeks so the only difference is the location - she is used to this type of setting).  I know it is way to early to decide but a few of the parents have asked us if we will hold her back for Kindergarten or start her on time next fall.  As of now, we are planning on starting her in the fall unless her teachers feel she would benefit by waiting an extra year and doing the PreK program again.

What did you look for in deciding when to start Kindergarten.  In  my state, you need to be 5 by Sept 1 and DD will turn 5 in Mid June.

Thanks (sorry, this got long)

Jenni Mom to DD#1 - 6-16-06 DD#2 - 3-13-08 

Re: Kindergarten Readiness

  • My DD turned 5 8/22 (cut off is 9/1), school (Kindergarten) started 8/23!  My DD also did prek 4 through the public school system (we are in a title 1 district.  it's a small-ish town).  My DD doesn't have the speech delays and isn't on an IEP, so I really don't know about it coming from that point of view but I can you that during a parent teacher conference, I expressed my concerns over DD being so young starting K and the teacher told me "don't give that a second thought, she is ready".  She explained that out of a class of 10, what all DD was advanced in--writing her name (in the correct case), counting, addition, etc.   Socially, I know I have a butterfly that does NOT stop talking.    DD has also been in an daycare setting since she was an infant.  I do know that in PreK, they seemed to be group by birthdays but DD is now with many kids turning 6 this fall.  I don't know how they grouped...

    I was a July baby and I did feel that I was disadvantaged in some was but I was 100% SAH kid until K.  I don't think DD will face the same issues I did.  I was exact opp, completely shy.  Some say, they are not disadvantage until they are older and the older girls start taking an interest in boys but honestly I don't remember having that issue at all. 

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • My DS are June and August babies. My June kiddo, there was never a question he was ready. My August baby started this year. His preschool educators all told me he was ready but I still had major reservations. His is the social thing as well. I would ask her teachers for feedback more towards when you start registering for kindergarten. She'll have plenty of time in the new school and they will have more understanding about her needs. I also emailed the kindergarten teacher the first week and asked her to assess any problems we may have. I was flat out honest with her and told her we were concerned about him being the youngest but knew he had all the skills they look for for readiness. She has been so helpful. She had her reservations about him being there too but now that we are 3 weeks in he is doing amazing and he is having no issues. I knew in my gut he could do it. 

    All I can say is sending a kid to kindergarten is hard regardless of the situation. It it such a bittersweet moment. Use your best mommy judgement and you'll make the right decision.  

    Tracey Mom to Logan and Liam
    I live for those smiles!
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  • Both of my kids have birthdays very close to the cutoff for our state, and both my kids were very bright, but on the socially reserved side in preschool.

    So, I had to make this decision two times.  I chose to send my DD to kindergarten just as she was turning 5, but chose to give my DS another year of pre-K.  Both my kids could read independently before starting K, and both were well-behaved in class, so cognitive development was never an issue.

    For me it came down to what I call the "with-it-ness" factor.  At age 5, I had total faith that my DD would pay attention to announcements about her bus, know how to navigate the building, would pick up on the routines of the school, would know and remember kids' and teachers' names, etc.  Yes, she was younger, and she was a fairly shy kid, but she was independent and had a level of maturity and "with-it-ness" that made me confident she could handle herself in kindergarten.

    My son didn't develop that same "with-it-ness" until he was about 5 and a half.  As the school year started and he had just turned 5, I could easily have pictured him sitting on the bus in front of our driveway, lost in a daydream, while the bus driver called out his name several times until he eventually gave up and assumed my son wasn't on the bus at all!  I just could not imagine him finding his way around the building, remembering his bus number, understanding the routines of the day, etc.

    It may help you to visit the school and observe a kindergarten classroom, including morning, lunch, specials, etc.  If, like me, you just cannot picture your kid being ready for that much independence, you'll know you need to give her the gift of more time.

    I have to tell you, it's been VERY satisfying to watch my son start kindergarten at the TOP of the class, instead of being perennially at the bottom, just because he was always younger.  And, he's not even the oldest, biggest kid in his class!  I know I'll never regret giving him an extra year.  Would he have survived kindergarten last year?  Sure.  But he's not just surviving now -- he's flourishing!  I feel like my little guy deserves to flourish and shine!

    High School English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

    DD, born 9/06/00 -- 12th grade
    DS, born 8/25/04 -- 7th grade
  • imageneverblushed:

    It may help you to visit the school and observe a kindergarten classroom, including morning, lunch, specials, etc.  If, like me, you just cannot picture your kid being ready for that much independence, you'll know you need to give her the gift of more time.

    I think this is a great suggestion. I made my decision based on the school he got into as well. Had he gone to our neighborhood school (where my oldest did kindergarten) I probably would have held off. The comparisons of the two programs are like night and day.  

    Tracey Mom to Logan and Liam
    I live for those smiles!
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