brownie's picture
brownie

kindergarten growth year

I am trying to make a decision: My son is 5 and will turn 6 in August. He went to kindergarten last year and had a difficult time. With the new curriculum, the teacher is teaching many new concepts that were not taught in kindgarten years ago, so it is a lot tougher. He had a difficult time with paying attention which led me to have him tested outside of school. They believe he is an "at risk" student with ADHD. He is now on meds and is doing wonderful! Many of the "things" that I thought were maturity issues, are now gone and he is now ready to learn. So, do I give him "the gift of time" in kindgarten again or move him on and hope that he can catch up with his peers? I am not finding any positive research in favor of retention, buy I see positive situations in our community from other students who did have 2 years in kindergarten. I have a lot of respect and confidence that his teacher will guide him through the additional year and help him emotionally, but still....



acitez's picture
acitez

Ask if you can get an evaluation for first grade readiness. Around here it is fairly common for moms to hold off sending sons to kindergarten until they are six. That way they aren't "retained" in school, they just have a later start.

donna70's picture
donna70

give him the gift of time ,my daughter has ADD and she kept going on we made the hard choice to keep her back in 3rd and until then she kept falling more behind,she is now doing better she isnt the top of the class but she isnt the lowest either ,this year she is going to be in a inclusion class with low,med ,high students i feel like this will help also .but if your child is going to be staying back do it now dont wait it was hard for her the first couple of weeks lots of tears i feel like it would have been better if we had done this in grade k ,we were told she will catch up she didnt grade k is where they get the basics needed to learn to read she went back in a class for about hour a day to learn the basics when she was in first ,every year she kept falling more behind because she was still trying to get a hold on what she had learned the year before ,we did all the tutor stuff every summer also but with her she needed that extra year to catch up she loves school now and has made a lot of growth this past year ,she will be going to fourth this year after doing 3rd 2 times we are ready ,just i would like to make a sug to you if you do hold them back change teachers and rooms we did not and both she and i were so tired of that classroom by the end came .but honest that is the only thing i would change about my choice ,like i said she has really improved since the past years and her social skills seemed to be more like the kids she is with now instead of the kids she used to be with

brownie's picture
brownie

I'm back with an update: We made the decision to give our little guy a growth year. It seems to have eliminated some pressure from us both. I don't feel the need to push him and he doesn't feel the pressure of not knowing the basics. We are sticking with same teacher, although I do understand the benefits of switching. This teacher goes beyond extordinary. She came to our house to offer the "gift of time". She explained it beautifully to him in his terms. I think this is going to work out well. I do agree that we might get tired of her class and be ready to move on, but she is such an awesome teacher, I would not have made this decision otherwise. Now, I am moving forward with "arming" him with suggestions for comments from other students. I know it will break my heart and be difficult for a while, but in the end this small hurdle with be best. So, if anyone has any great ideas for my "armor", let me know. (My comment to my family in friends will be that we didn't start his college fund early enough and we need another year to catch up!)
Thanks!

acitez's picture
acitez

His new classmates will not be aware that he was in kindergarten last year, his old classmates will just be curious, his family may phrase it wrong, but they are just interested in his well-being. I'd be honest with close family. At some point, your siblings may face the same struggle with one of their children.

concerned mom's picture
concerned mom

I agree, be honest w/ people, but don't volunteer too much info. Only talk to those you feel you can trust. Encourage your son to be proud of who he is and how far he has come. Teach him to ignore those people who are insincere, and encourage him to interact w/ those who are kind-hearted. At this age, kids are quite tolerant. I find it's the adults who sometimes never grow up. Good luck.

brownie's picture
brownie

Well, the school year is finally over. My son who repeated kindergarten is a happy guy without having suffered any humiliation from his peers for our decision to retain him. I think the success in this situation has to handed to the school/teacher/our support at home and his resiliance. His teacher was insturmental in creating an enviroment of understand and acceptance. He was viewed as a role model not a failure. He enjoyed this experience and is more prepared for first grade. Do I think school is going to be a breeze for him at this point? NO, I do think we will need to continue working with him to build his self esteem and his Central Auditory Processing Disorder.(Which we are doing with a Cognitive Therapist) I think he will continue to be my "challenge". However, I feel this added year, has given him the maturity needed to contiue forward with a little leg up. Time will tell, but I do not by any means question the decision that we made. Looking forward, school is MUCH MORE CHALLENGING than ever before. Why wouldn't I want to give him to support now? The younger years are the building blocks for the future. If you don't know how to read well, nothing else will ever be easy. It has also been with his success, that other parents of students in his class are choosing the same path for their kindergarten children by providing their children with a "gift of time".

Schools Cool's picture
Schools Cool

I too had a struggle with my, then three, year old beginning Kindergarten. In Ontario, children that turn four in the school year are encouraged to begin school. After weeks of struggle we pulled him out and re-entered him the following year. He is now in grade two and thriving! He is engaged and active with his learning and loves doing homework! Giving a child the opportunity to grow is a difficult decision to make, however we often know what is best for our children and get caught up in the 'should' instead of focusing on their needs. Another assessment prior to Grade 3 would prove beneficial for your son as often times ADHD is mis-diagnosed. Look at it again, if you can, to ensure a second opinion. As well, attending kindergarten readiness programs is an invaluable step that a lot of parents are unaware of or that communities don't offer.