Kindergarten vs. First Grade

Discussion in 'Early Childhood Education Archives' started by mdboyd9087, Jun 24, 2005.

  1. mdboyd9087

    mdboyd9087 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2005
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 24, 2005

    Hello. Please allow a mommy to tap your educational expertise. I am the mother of a five year old girl named Olivia. Olivia is a September baby. She has been in full day preschool since she was three. She just completed private kindergarten in May. She did very well -- enjoyed reading, writing and interacted well with other children. She literally loves school. Keep in mind she will turn six on September 11 of 2005.

    We went to enroll her in public school for this fall. They suggested that we have her tested for first grade readiness even though she misses the age cut off by 8 weeks. The counselor was familiar with the private K program she had completed and felt Liv might be ready for first grade. We did have her sit for the test and the school system has recommended she be enrolled in the first grade.

    I have read lots of posts on this site about kindergarten readiness and I appreciated the expertise. However, in the situation of a child who has completed a full day curriculum based kindergarten program, I wonder what your advice would be. Do I have her repeat kindergarten in the school system because that is where her age places her? Or do we move forward to first grade?

    I am a tad concerned about Olivia being bored. She loves to be challenged. If she is asked to constantly review something she already knows, she loses interest. I am concerned that she will lose her interest in school if we place her in Kindergarten again.

    I feel inept to make this decision because I have no educational background. I am literally on the fence and would more than appreciate input from those of you who work in this area.

    Thanks in advance.

    Michelle
     
  2.  
  3. lexusann

    lexusann Rookie

    Joined:
    May 6, 2003
    Messages:
    76
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 24, 2005

    Michelle,
    This is a tough call. As a kindergarten teacher I enjoy having students like your Olivia in my class. I use students like her as helpers and they are such great leaders in the classroom. However, if she has been through testing with the NEW school and they feel she is ready for the first grade I would say don't hold her back. I myself was a September baby. I enjoyed being one of the oldest in my class and was always the top of my class academically. You know your child better than anyone else. Do you think she would be bored and cause trouble or be bored and be anxious to help others?
    I would speak with both the Kindergarten and first grade teachers at the school and see how each view having Olivia. As teachers they should be able to help you decide the best placement for Olivia.

    Good Luck!
     
  4. lowrie

    lowrie Companion

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2005
    Messages:
    206
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 24, 2005

    Michelle, I've been where you are. My oldest was born on December 17, 1991 and our cut off is December 31st. He misses it by only 2 weeks and potentially his classmates could have January 1st birthdays making them effectively a year older than he is.

    We decided to put him in kindergarten in 1996, the year he turned five, which meant starting him in kindergarten at four years nine months. He hadn't been to preschool, but was a bright, affable little guy who enjoyed the company of other children and adults. He was an early talker and reader.

    He is now 13 1/2 and finishing grade eight. He starts highschool in the fall. He is in classes with students that are nearly a year older than he is and he is academically one of the top students, making the A/A+ honour roll twice this year. He isn't hung up on what the others think of him and he is selective in his friendships, mostly spending time with the kids he's known since kindergarten.

    Do I notice that he's younger than his classmates? Occasionally, but not in any way that matters. For example, lots of his classmates are starting to get caught up in boy/girl stuff and he's not (thank goodness!).

    I know we made the right decision, though I do know this is a tough one. Whatever choice you make has to work for your child and you.

    Good luck!
     
  5. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2004
    Messages:
    1,233
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 24, 2005

    Michelle,

    If the school that Olivia (pretty name by the way) will be attending in the Fall tested her and feels that she will be ready to succeed in first grade then allow the placement, especially if she gets bored easily and enjoys a challenge. I have taught both Kindergarten and First grade and the large amount of the time in Kindergarten is spent teaching socialization and skills that your daughter already has learned if she was attending an academic preschool/private Kindergarten. First grade will get into the more in depth skills of reading fluency, sight words, spelling, writing and mathmatical facts and concepts. It sounds as if you are very concerned which is wonderful. It also sounds as if you have a very bright daughter who will excel in 1st grade with the right teacher. Good luck with your decision. My school wouldn't allow the option. They would require her to go into Kindergarten if she wasn't old enough to meet the first grade cut off. I have a student that I had to retain this year in second grade due to the fact that he missed the age cutoff and it was caught toward the end of the year (they realized that they should have placed him in 1st grade when he enrolled from out of state).
     
  6. Margo

    Margo Devotee

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2001
    Messages:
    1,153
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 24, 2005

    I agree. I would go ahead and put her in first grade if that is where the school suggests she goes. They wouldn't lead you wrong. They are the ones that know.
     
  7. alilisa

    alilisa Habitué

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2005
    Messages:
    922
    Likes Received:
    1

    Jun 25, 2005

    One thought to keep in mind is what type of curriculum is being used in Kindergarten. I have taught in a few districts in Minnesota and the one I am in now is very academic. The students need to be reading by the time they leave Kindergarten. Basically our Kindergarten curriculum is like a First Grade in several other districts, but if the district says that she will do fine in First grade, then go for it! As a parent, just be watching out for signs that she may either start struggling or getting too bored with curriculum. Then you can adjust from there! :)
     
  8. dee

    dee Companion

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2003
    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 25, 2005

    I would definitely place her in first grade. I am a first grade teacher in Louisiana and the cut-off date here is Sept. 30th. All the babies of my class did very well. I am sure that she is surely ready for 1st grade with all that you posted.
     
  9. mdboyd9087

    mdboyd9087 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2005
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 26, 2005

    Thank you!

    Thank you so very much for all of your input. I really appreciate it. It is so very tough to make a call like this when it is not your area of expertise. I just want to do what is best for her.

    You have all made me feel stronger about sending her to first grade.

    Thanks so much!

    -Michelle
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Ash Inc,
  2. tigger88
Total: 175 (members: 4, guests: 155, robots: 16)
test