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    Anyone know...
    Jackie03291 posted:
    What skills a child should be able to do/know before entering kindergarten?

    Just curious as I start to think about what Ava can do now and what we should be focusing on as far as what she is learning to prepare for kindergarten. I know that it seems like a million years away, but it really isn't if you think about it. I'm hoping to get Ava into kindergarten in September 2013. She will have to be approved for early entry because she won't be 5 until October 14th and the cutoff is September 1st, but I think that if we start working now, we can get her ready and get her in.

    So just wondering if anyone knows how much or if she should be able to read, write, count, etc?

    Jackie (27) Bryan (36) Ava 10/14/08 Baby Girl 2 Due 5/4/12
    kc_94920 responded:
    Enthusiasm toward learning , Solid oral-language skills I taught Kindergarten for many years and this was my basic "go to" checklist. Each readiness skill has a lot to it and I can get deeper if you need more insight but the list will give you an idea of what is expected by the time K rolls around.

    1) The ability to list en.

    2) Have enthusiasm towards learning/school.

    3)The desire to be independent and ability to be so.

    4)The ability to play well with others (problem solve, conflict resolution, share, listen , take turns, etc.)

    5)Strong fine-motor skills (write and recognize full name, hold scissors, button, zip, tie, etc)

    6) Basic letter and number recognition (A-Z, 1-10).

    I know you were NOT asking for advise on the subject but I strongly urge to to recondider putting an October baby into K early. Talk to people, read about it and think about her life at 15/16 not how bright or "ready" you think she is at 4/5. I know a lot of families and a lot of fall birthday kids, even have one of my own, and I have NEVER heard of any one of them who regretted waiting until the child was on the older end as opposed to the "baby" for the span of grade school. I have however comiserated with many Moms who wished they had waited. Just food for thought....

    KC~ Mady (9), Logan (7) and Coco (almost 4!!!)
    kc_94920 replied to kc_94920's response:
    Sorry about the format and colors...not sure what happened there...
    KC~ Mady (9), Logan (7) and Coco (almost 4!!!)
    sarahann1978 replied to kc_94920's response:
    Just to add a thought to KC's advice, my SIL was that way, her b-day is Oct. 22 and her family started her a year early. She was an incredible athlete, all-American in track in college and played basketball in high school. She regretted that she was under-sized for her classmates because she was a year younger than those she competed against.

    My b-day is Oct. 8 and I was in the right class for my age. I was usually one of the oldest kids in class, but it didn't really bother me that much. I was always at the top of my class academically, but once we went on tracks in sixth grade it didn't matter because I could take the more advanced level classes.
    Sarah (33) DH (30) DS (Jan 2009) baby (Aug 2012)
    ambern99 responded:
    I think they need to know their ABCs, can count to 20 (maybe more), know certain color and shapes. I would look up the county school district that she'd attend they may have a list of requirements.
    ryanandleigh responded:
    She won't have to know how to read but she should be able to identify her letters, numbers, colors, body parts and so on. She should be able to follow directions.

    But don't just look at the things she "knows". You need to look at how she behaves in strange situations, how she plays with others, does she speak to other adults when spoken to...

    I agree with other poster that I wouldn't try to have her admitted early to K. The kindergarten of today is more like 1st grade when we were in it. We actually held DS back based on the recommendation from his preschool teacher. He is an early summer birthday and she worried about his social maturity. (Kids don't usually struggle in K but later on about 3rd grade according to the educators we spoke with.) We put him in a "gift of time" program and let him have that extra year to mature and he is doing super now. I don't regret it at all. Yes he is the oldest in his class but he is also doing so much better than the other students. I started K at age 4 because my mom had me tested to start early (missed the cut off by 12 days). I was always the youngest in my class and while I never struggled academically, I do think it was harder for me to make friends. I was always painfully shy and now wonder what it would have been like if I had been a little older and more ready to start school.
    VicsEandJ responded:
    I disagree with the other posters about holding children back another year for kindergarten. I think that unless your child is particularly immature, they should start school on time, the year they turn five.

    Contrary to the current thinking on the issue, there are many studies that show that by mid- elementary school there are no differences between ids born earlier inthe year and those born later. The reality is there will always be a child that is younger slower, smaller etc when they start, but that is no real predicter of where they will end up. And personally, to me, I would not necesarily want my kid to be the oldest in the class if they didn't have to be because unless your child is natural leader, they will actually have less expected of them than other kids their age who are a grade ahead- to me, and it's just my opinion- it seems as if it would be holding a kid back form seeing waht they are really capable of! Younger kids always learn from older kids, and oldest kids in families are usually not the most adventurous, or the quickest to do anything. JMO.

    I have a nephew born in November and and neice born in late December and they started school the September just before they turned 5. They did not have any bad experiences- I don't think anyone can say that it is a given that a late year child will have difficulties.

    My DD is also born at the end of December and I intend to enroll her in kindergarten in Sept. 2013.

    If you have any doubts, and I don't think that every parent whose kid is born late in the eyar automatically should, if she doesn't go to preschool now, you may want to try that for now, even on a part-time basis. Or if pre-k is avaibale near you, enroll her for 2012 as a way to see if she is ready. The readiness that they will likely look for to waive the cutoff date is likely to be socialization/maturity issues. Sadly, there are many kids starting kindergarten, who are the "right" age, who don't have 'academic' stuff mastered.
    magsnemma replied to VicsEandJ's response:
    Vics - Do you happen to know where you read the studies about this? I have a November kid, and I'm always curious about this. We will also most likely be moving when DD is 4 1/2 (military so I don't know where) and it seems like everywhere is different, so she might be starting just before she turns 5, I'm not sure. This subject is really interesting to me, so I'd like to read the other side, since all I've seen is information about holding kids.
    Ali (34) DH (35) DD (3)
    kc_94920 replied to VicsEandJ's response:
    This is not about holding a child "back". Her DD would have to be admitted early as she misses her state cut-off.
    KC~ Mady (9), Logan (7) and Coco (almost 4!!!)
    miob replied to VicsEandJ's response:
    It really depends on the school district. Ours, and many others in this region, have a September 1st cutoff. DS has a late September birthday and will not be able to start kindergarten until he is almost 6 years old.
    VicsEandJ replied to kc_94920's response:
    It's not always that hard to get your kid admitted early. My sister looked into it when my neice was about to start school in NC, but they ended up moving back to MD where it was a calendar year, so she didn't have to worry. My nephew who is several years older than his sister, started school in DC which had a calendar year, so when they moved to NC, he was allowed to be in the grade he was next scheduled to go to. But he was the youngest in his class since most of his friends- including his best friend at the time who was 2 weeks older than him- were a grade behind.

    The cut-off dates are all arbitary. They are not based on scientifc data. Most states or municipalities have different ones and it really doesn't have that much to do with the child.

    In NYC where I live, it's based upon a calendar year. Thankfully.

    I don't think it's bad to hold your kid back if you really think they aren't ready, but I think that now there is a trend in holding kids back in the hopes of giving your kid some kind of advantage ( why is there a disavantage in being the youngest- someone always has to be the youngest!) that doesn't exist.

    No one is harming a kid born at the end of the year by sending them to school with kids born the same year that they are, but in the last few years people have all of sudden started acting like you're abusing your child if you do it. I think it's ridiculous.

    Every child devleops at their own pace, not based solely on when their birthday falls within the year.
    VicsEandJ replied to magsnemma's response:
    I had read an article in the NY times or NY magazine before thatt referred to a study that found that the advantages of waiting are short-lived.. I googled kindergarten starting dates and among the articles for delaying, I found these:

    This one shows factors to consider for readiness:

    I just think that there is never any one answer to anything having to do with a child's development and people shouldn't be told that only one thing is right and that if a kid can't do X on a certain date that they are somehow delayed- it's nonsense. Anyone who has kids knows that things can change overnight in your child's development.

    I find the subject interesting too. I just think the right answer depends on the child.

    My kids are 1 1/2 years apart in age, but developmentally, DD, who is younger, could do everything that DS could do at an age of 4-12 months younger than he could- like walk and potty train, undress herself,hold a pencil etc. She's the youngest in her pre-school class (some kids are nearly a full year older because she was born at the end of December) and no one who didn't know her birthday would ever be able to tell. She can pump herself on the big kid's swings. She just has a personality that makes her want to keep trying and practice what she's learing. DH & I have never gone out of our way to encourage her, it's just how she is- and there is good and bad in it.

    DS, who is born in July- before any state's cutoff date- is always the last to do anything involving motor skills. He was one of the last in his class to potty train- though several kids were younger than him and he had no interest in coloring correctly or writing properly.-so much so that the owner of his daycre thought DH & I should get him evaulated for OT (we didn't). DD developed a proper pencil grip before he did. But DS is a whiz at counting and math, he can do simple addition and subtraction at 4 1/2 and I recently got complemented bythe daycare owner about the progress he has made in his writing and his teacher says his letters are gorgeous (all we did was some fine motor skills exercises and a book so he could practice tracing hsi letters at home). He basicaly does things when he feels ready and comfortable, but he is ntarually cautious and often waits until he has mastered something to freely admit or show you that he can do it.
    Emotionally, I think DS has always been more mature- is it becuse his birthday is earlier in the year, because he is a boy, or becuase he is the first born- is DD's difference becuse she is born later in the year, a girl or the baby in the family?

    Kids develop when they develop and I think it's a fact that is often forgotten in the rush to make the perfect child.

    ryanandleigh replied to VicsEandJ's response:
    I have no problem with starting DS late and it has nothing to do with "the rush to make the perfect child". It has to do with what is best for him. Just because someone's child is ready at 4 to academically start school doesn't mean they are ready socially. What is the hurry with having kids grow up? I have watched DS this year in K and in Texas, they learn A LOT. It is like 1st grade verses the K that I grew up with. I would take the research with a grain of salt unless it is very recent and happens to be in my state. Texas has strict testing. And it starts in the 3rd grade and if you don't pass, you don't advance. It is a lot of pressure on the kids (and teachers) and I have spoke here to numerous teachers, counselors, and parents about kids who were and were not held back. They have all clearly stated that there is an obvious difference on how well kids do based on if they are held back. And when I am talking about held back I am just looking at those with summer birthdays. These are the kids that JUST turned 5 before school started.

    As I said before, I was 4 when I started K. Personally, I think it would have been better if my mom hadn't had me tested and admitted early. I think socially I would have done better. Thankfully here in Texas they will not let you test to let your child in early.
    ryanandleigh replied to magsnemma's response:
    Forgot to add this link - it is the only one I still have from when I researched keeping DS back - and I did a lot of reading and more importantly talking to LOCAL teachers and parents about it.

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