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Old 09-02-2011, 01:43 PM
 
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My daughter has a May birthday and will only be 5 yo and 3 months when she would normally start K. She has just started her first year of preschool (she is now 3 years and 4 mos) and I realized she is the youngest in her class. I have seen some kids in her class that are almost 4 (but still qualify for the 3 yo-s class) and they look, act and talk in quite advanced ways.
It is amazing what a difference a year can make.

In addition, her first language is not English as she has been more exposed to my native tongue than to English during her first 3 years of life. She speaks well in my language but not as well in English - as her American born and raised father (aka my husband ) is just not that talkative.

In short, I really feel like she is at risk of starting K a bit behind her classmates, having two things staked against her: young 5 and ESL.
She is intelligent, perceptive and seems to do very well on spatial-visual tasks but she is not the most verbal child ever.

Now I know that in order for some to be at the top, others have to be at the bottom - but I'd just rather not have mine fill out the bottom part, if at all possible.

It is possible that my oldest, a boy who just started K as a very old 5 yo (he is about to turn 6) conditioned me to expect "advanced behavior". Even as an ESL child, he has always been unusually verbal in both languages and scored in the 95th percentile on a cognitive test (in English, the verbal section). He entered K reading at 2nd grade level or so and doing 1st grade math, and he seems overall quite advanced for what is being done in K right now.

I have a feeling this will not be the case with my daughter and that she will need more time to mature, academically speaking.

My mother said that she would NOT put her in K at the age of 5 y and 3 mos for the life of her and that schools are now pushing kids to perform too young anyway. I agree with that and if it is still legal to keep the child in pre-school at the age of 5, I am inclined to do it.

My only concern would be that she might end up the biggest/most physically developed girl in her class in the future (she is not petite but not fat either, just taller and bigger-boned, overall).

So my question would be: yay or nay?
What would you do and why?
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Old 09-02-2011, 01:53 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syracusa View Post
So my question would be: yay or nay?
What would you do and why?
My answer is that it is too soon to make that decision. She is only 3. You don't know what will happen with her language skills in the next 2 years. Language skills are a funny thing with little kids. Sometimes the kids appear to be behind and then their language skills take off exponentially.

If she were about to start school and she still seemed to need more development in her language skills I would say keep her home another year. But right now it's not possible to tell whether she needs it.
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Old 09-02-2011, 02:27 PM
 
Location: Frankfurt, Germany
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My son has a birthday at the end of May and several kids in our daycare had birthdays up until right before school started and none of them were held back. We started him this week.

We have kids in school here who have no one speaking English in the home and they start K. Not every kid is verbal. Some are shy and just keep to themselves but pay attention and observe.

I personally wouldn't hold her back. If she is in preschool for 2 yrs before starting she will be more than prepared. My son's class started this week by doing 2 letters of the alphabet each day and the sound they make. They are counting to about 10-15 I think he said. The teacher is assessing each kid and in 3 wks she will send home either letters or words for him to starte learning at home.

They do what is called a DIAL screening in the spring here to assess for K and will ask the child questions to determine their readiness. They sat down with us afterwards and told us things to work on over the summer. I would at least see what they say when she is evaluated. You can always change your mind and hold her back.
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Old 09-02-2011, 02:32 PM
 
Location: Keosauqua, Iowa
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I didn't read the whole post, but my daughter started kindergarten at 5 years 1 month (July birthday) and had no problems.

Start her in preschool at 4, her teachers will be able to tell you if she's ready for kindergarten the next year.
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Old 09-02-2011, 02:54 PM
 
Location: nc
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As you said in your own post "it's amazing what a difference a year can make". Your daughter still has two years to go before kindergarten. Keep her in preschool and see how she is in two more years. Then ask her teachers for their recommendation. It's not the end of the world if she has to wait another year. Lots of kids do it.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:21 PM
 
Location: a warmer place
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I second what the previous poster said...wait and make the decision in the Spring before she would attend. We have a daughter with a June Birthday who was very immature (she is in 3rd grade now). We held her back and I Thank God every day we did. It is really the only time without notice by your child that you can give them time to mature. I'm really happy she'll go off to college a little bit more mature, not lag in physical maturity etc. The benefits go on and on. Anyway many people hold their kids back (more boys though). My daughter is the tallest third grader at her school...but you know she probably would be the tallest 4th grader with our genes...at 9 being the tallest is a good thing! We have an older child with a summer birthday we did not hold back...she was very mature and still is....it really depends on the child. Trust your gut. You know her the best.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:25 PM
 
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There are no negatives to keeping her back a year and based on your own post there are at least potential negatives to starting at 5.

So we know the positives to being the oldest in a class in terms of maturity, etc but what do you think the advantage would be to starting her at 5?
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:41 PM
 
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I think it's too early to make that call now. It's two years before your daughter would start kindergarten. She may seem behind now but be more than ready when the time comes.

In general, I think it's better to try to keep most kids with similar-age peers. Of course there are always exceptions. But a daughter who is a full year older than many of her classmates may feel uncomfortable and isolated later when puberty hits her much sooner than everyone else. Because of that, I would be inclined not to hold her back unless there was a compelling reason to. And again, I think that won't become apparent for another year or two.
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Old 09-02-2011, 08:08 PM
 
4,044 posts, read 5,954,172 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lkb0714 View Post
There are no negatives to keeping her back a year and based on your own post there are at least potential negatives to starting at 5.

So we know the positives to being the oldest in a class in terms of maturity, etc but what do you think the advantage would be to starting her at 5?
Other than preschool money saved , I hardly see any.

And like I said, I am a bit afraid that she might always be the biggest girl in her class, physically speaking. For a boy, this is a great thing - but for a girl, not necessarily. Petite and delicate has always been "in" for girls. h886 made a good point. Other than that - there would only be advantages to being more mature.

I know this means virtually nothing right now, but I can't help feeling good when I see my 6 yo kindergartner virtually blasting through all the standards they are supposed to meet at the end of the year - and so much more. For example, he came home with a list of 70 "sight" words which they will have to know by the end of K. If they know 20 by the end of the first quarter, they get a 3 (meets expectations) and if they know more than 20 they get a 3+ (exceeds). He got 67 words perfectly and only messed up three of them, most likely because he was urged to recognize them instead of being allowed to sound them out.

For whatever reason I feel my daughter would not be able to reach these standards at 5 and 3 mos; I am convinced she could try to keep up and tag along but I know she would not be where my son is now at the beginning of K.

Last edited by syracusa; 09-02-2011 at 08:16 PM..
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Old 09-02-2011, 08:23 PM
 
2,596 posts, read 4,646,543 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syracusa View Post
For whatever reason I feel my daughter would not be able to reach these standards at 5 and 3 mos; I am convinced she could try to keep up and tag along but I know she would not be where my son is now at the beginning of K.
It's possible she may catch up by then. Some kids get off to a slower start but then are on grade level by the time they start school. The other thing to consider is that your son may be gifted or at least more intelligent than average, and your daughter may not be behind, per se, but simply right on target--average. So she may never hit the same milestones at the same time her brother did, but might be perfectly ready for kindergarten all the same.
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