How do I know if my child is ready for kindergarten?
More and more parents are choosing to keep their child in pre-kindergarten an extra year because studies have shown that students who are among the oldest in their class have a distinct competitive learning edge over the youngest kids in their grade, scoring 4 to 12 percent higher on standardized math and science tests. This achievement gap narrows over time, but never completely goes away, all the way into middle and high school. Also, with the increasing demands placed upon our children in kindergarten by the new Common Core State Standards being adopted across the United States, some parents delay the start of school knowing that today’s kindergarten looks more like first grade did back when we were young.
However, chronological age is just one predictor of academic success. It is important for parents to look at how well-prepared your child is for kindergarten by looking at you own child’s maturity and behavior, regardless of age. In general, a child who is ready for kindergarten:
¨ Follows adult directions.
¨ Gets along well with other children.
¨ Can draw, paint, and cut with safety scissors.
¨ Listens when a story is read.
¨ Talks about experiences. Can express needs and wants.
¨ Knows basic shapes and colors.
¨ Understands the difference between work time and play time.
¨ Shows interest in learning about letters and numbers.
¨ Tries again if something doesn’t work out just right the first time.
Remember, there is not one right or wrong answer about when to start your child in kindergarten.
As a parent, you are in the best position to know your child and if she or he is ready for the demands of a structured school setting. However, if you would like help in making this decision, please contact our school office. Our Principal would be glad to make an appointment to meet with you, and you may also want to observe in a kindergarten classroom and see what the routine is like and what is expected of the children before you make your final decision.