From a reader......
As we get closer to January, my husband and I have a big decision to make.... Whether or not to send our son to kindergarten in August 2013.
Our son turns 5 at the end of September, right before the October 1st cut-off for SFUSD. He will be 4 years old on the first day of school.
- He is the second born, so he is used to playing-with, keeping-up with older kids
- Verbal, gross-moter & social skills seem on track for kinder
- He is of average size, so he won't look like the smallest in the class
- He seems ready and he wants to go
- We think the mental challenge is good for his development (see below)
- He loves sports and seems motivated & coordinated to play team sports
- He will be the youngest in his class... forever
Our daughter was also born right before the cut-off and sending her was the best decision we ever made. Our decision was reinforced by this article in the NYT supporting younger kids starting kinder...
NYT, Delay Kindergarten at your Child's Peril
Notably, "Parents want to provide the best environment for their child, but delaying school is rarely the right approach. The first six years of life are a time of tremendous growth and change in the developing brain. Synapses, the connections between brain cells, are undergoing major reorganization. Indeed, a 4-year-old's brain uses more energy than it ever will again. Brain development cannot be put on pause, so the critical question is how to provide the best possible context to support it.
For most children, that context is the classroom."
Although we have a strong bias towards sending him, our approach will be to meet with his preschool teachers in early January to assess his readiness, then pull the trigger....
Parents - Are you facing this decision? Will you send your child next fall or hold them back?