Child

Child looking at book

Conquer Kindergarten Questions

Your little one knows her ABC’s and how to count to 20, but she’s shy and doesn’t make friends easily. 

Your sister’s little boy never met a stranger, but can’t sit still long enough to learn his letters, colors or numbers. 

Even though they are both 5 years old, born just weeks apart, are they ready to go to kindergarten?

In Texas, children who are 5 years old on or before Sept. 1 are eligible to start kindergarten, but that doesn’t mean they’re ready to go. And some parents opt to hold their kids back due to academic, socialization or maturity.

Signs That Your Little One Is Ready For Kindergarten

  • Can she focus and pay attention?
  • Is he able to control his emotions and impulses?
  • Can he take turns?
  • Does she cooperate and follow directions?
  • Can he make friends?
  • Does she communicate her emotions?
  • Can he limit his aggressive behavior?
  • Is she able to talk, listen and understand concepts like letters, numbers, and shapes?

Questioning

If you don’t think you can adequately judge your youngster’s abilities, talk to your physician and/or the school counselor. Some schools even have readiness tests for incoming kindergartners.

Other parents look at the child’s age. Will she turn 5 just a few weeks before the cut-off date, or will he be one of the oldest in the class?

My middle son and a friend’s daughter were born on the same day, Sept. 7, just days after the cut-off date to start kindergarten. She was already reading, while he barely said a word in his preschool class. She started kindergarten, but he waited a year. It was a good decision for both of them.

If your youngster is borderline, you will need to make the call. 

Some parents opt to hold their children back or red-shirt them, to give them extra time to develop maturity, academically or socially. Some figure that it will pay off in the long run, too, in junior high and high school when kids really start to mature. They figure that it will be better to have a child who is more mature instead of one who is trying to keep up with their peers.

By Amanda Rogers for Surepoint Medical Center

Photo by Stephen Andrews on Unsplash


Amanda Rogers is a freelance writer based in Fort Worth, Texas

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