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#61 of 75 Old 11-09-2011, 03:12 PM
 
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I think I am coming late to this party!   The posts were interesting to me since I delayed 2 of my 3 kids. 


I would like to see positive examples of starting a 4 year old in Kindergarten.     I read a lot of posts where redshirting was not a positive to other kids.  But give me an example of a July 25th birthday boy starting school on August 2nd from a positive point of view.    Seriously. 

 

I held my son back and my daughter.

My daughter's birthday is August 23rd and she actually started school as a 4 year old.   She was 4 and going to school for 8 hours!  After school started we discovered that she was hearing impaired and held her back in Kindergarten for another year.  It was without a doubt the best thing I have ever done.     She wasn't a bully.  Rather she resisted being bullied by other girls because she was more mature.   She wasn't bigger than everyone.  She actually was on the smaller side.  Imagine if she had been a year ahead. 

 

When my son started - it was obvious that if delaying or repeating kindergarten had benefitted our dd so much - it obviously would benefit my ds who had a late summer birthday.   He is now 14 and in the 8th grade.   He's 5 ft 2 and not even 100 lbs.

 

I know I sound snarky, but I would appreciate it if the previous posters would make decisions for their kids and stop judging me for the decision I made in reference to my children.  Not just because they are my kids, but because you are wrong.  My kids aren't bigger than everyone and they certainly aren't bullies.


Thank you kathymuggle for once again being the voice of reason and continually posting that it is up to the parent.

 

 


I don't have boys so I can't address an example of a younger boy starting K, but I do have two younger girls who started.  The oldest has an August 29th bd in a district where holding younger kids out a year is very common and the cut off was 9/15 when she started.  Like a pp, I won't say that what worked for her is generally right for most kids, though.  She started K in early August a few weeks before her 5th bd.  She also skipped a grade and is now a high school freshman having turned 13 a few weeks into the start of the school year.  All of those decisions were absolutely the best thing for her socially and academically.

 

My youngest has a 9/27 bd in a district with a 9/15 cut off.  We kind of snuck her around the cut off by starting her in a different district which had changed their cut off to 10/1 the year she started and then moved her to the other district.  She is, thus, the youngest by quite a bit.  She is also very, very small.  As an 11 y/o 6th grader, she's under 60 lbs and about 4'5".  On the other hand, it really wouldn't have mattered how long we waited to start her, she would always be one of the smaller people.  Many of the women in our family on both sides are around 5' or somewhat shorter.  The men on both sides of the family range from 5'4" to 5'10" (only one man is this tall and her dad is 5'6").  Again, I don't think that holding her out a year would have necessarily been a good choice although she is less driven than her sister and might have been okay.  It's hard to say since I can only see the outcomes the way we did it.  She's doing well socially and academically, though.

 

I certainly didn't mean to slam people who did hold their kids out a year with my one short post above.  Like others, what I don't care for is the assumption that there are nothing but positives to be gained by waiting and when it becomes so prevalent that kids whose bds are near the cut are not only one year younger, but often two.  My youngest, even without a grade skip, has kids who are 18+ months older than her in her grade.  My oldest, with one grade skip, has kids who are nearly three years older than her in her freshman class.  They are getting close to getting their drivers licenses while she was 12 at the start of the year. 

 

I think that it is reasonable to acknowledge that there can be negative and positive consequences to either choice and that it often depends on the child.  What I see too much of (and heard too much of from educators when my girls were younger) is that no one regrets holding their kid out a year and that many or most people who start younger kids do regret it.  That certainly has not been our experience.
 

 

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#62 of 75 Old 11-09-2011, 04:42 PM
 
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My dd is one of the youngest in her 8th grade class. She turned 13 a couple of days ago. There is one boy younger than her. He started KG at the usual time. Red-shirting is not allowed here so it's not an unusual situation. I happen to know his birthday because he's the only 12-year-old left in dd's small class. He's doing fine: in the top half of the class, well-liked, able, confident. He's very small for his age, probably about 4'10" since he's a smidge shorter than my dd. He's super athletic and a top scorer on the school soccer team as well as playing hockey at a fairly elite level for his age.

 

All kids are different. I didn't hear anyone judging parents for making considered choices with particular children.

 

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#63 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 04:50 AM
 
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Originally Posted by lab View Post

I


I would like to see positive examples of starting a 4 year old in Kindergarten.     I read a lot of posts where redshirting was not a positive to other kids.  But give me an example of a July 25th birthday boy starting school on August 2nd from a positive point of view.    Seriously. 

 

 


Many parents on this thread mentioned kids that they sent on time that are doing just fine. I have a child who was four at the start of the K year and doing just fine. It would have been a disaster to hold this child back IMO.  I also had a child who was already five at the start of K and struggled a bit. Age doesn't always matter. Some kids are going to struggle a bit in school always or just in the first few years...... Most posters including myself mentioned giving parents leeway of a few months in making the decision to send to school or not so the example you are giving would be completely up to the parent. The problems arise when kids farther and farther from the cut of dates are held out. Did you actually read the thread? 

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#64 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 06:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by whatsnextmom View Post

 

However, these decisions often are made with poor information, lack of experience, over-sentiment or the desire to make a perfectly average and capable child an academic/atheletic star.

 

 



 



 

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Originally Posted by meetoo View Post
  Parents should not be able to pick and choose what grade their kids go in just so they can have an advantage over the other kids. 


 



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Originally Posted by JollyGG View Post
I am on local message boards where this decision is brought up frequently and pretty much none of those parents have done any research. 

 

 

I don't think Lab was totally off the mark in sensing some judgement not just towards redshirting in general, but also those parents who do it.  See a few cut and pastes above.  I know many of you also said parents should have a little leeway if they are near cut-off dates.  I am not trying to start an argument or take this thread off course  (I am actually quite tired of threads that dissolve into threads on judgment on MDC!) but she isn't coming out of left field.

 

I would also like to (somewhat hesitantly) point out that many of the people who have have posted on this thread have gifted children.  I know this because the posters have said so before or they hang out on the gifted forum.  While this does not negate their  experience, I also think it is fair to say that an exceptionally bright young -for-dates child might have a different experience than a more typical child.

 

I would have loved to have seen more parents who have redshirted or considered redshirting discuss their reasoning, but it has not yet come to pass, such are the demographics of MDC.

 

Personally, this thread has been quite eye-openning for me.  Thanks, everyone!

 

 

 

 

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#65 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 08:11 AM
 
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Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

I don't think Lab was totally off the mark in sensing some judgement not just towards redshirting in general, but also those parents who do it.  See a few cut and pastes above.  I know many of you also said parents should have a little leeway if they are near cut-off dates.  I am not trying to start an argument or take this thread off course  (I am actually quite tired of threads that dissolve into threads on judgment on MDC!) but she isn't coming out of left field.

 

I would also like to (somewhat hesitantly) point out that many of the people who have have posted on this thread have gifted children.  I know this because the posters have said so before or they hang out on the gifted forum.  While this does not negate their  experience, I also think it is fair to say that an exceptionally bright young -for-dates child might have a different experience than a more typical child.

 

I would have loved to have seen more parents who have redshirted or considered redshirting discuss their reasoning, but it has not yet come to pass, such are the demographics of MDC.

 

Personally, this thread has been quite eye-openning for me.  Thanks, everyone!


If you are going to quote me, you need to include the very next sentence.

 

 I absolutely support the very small percentage of kids who could use the extra year but I've also been witness to what happens when it becomes the norm.... not pretty.

 

I'm speaking as a witness to what happens when red-shirting becomes commonplace and yes, the more common, the less research and thought go into the decision. It's the same with grade acceleration, the more common it becomes, the more kids who really aren't good candidates are skipped and thus, more problems arise. Do we just not acknowledge that this happens? Do we ignore the fact that these decisions effect the rest of our kids? People should be secure enough in their decisions to accept that not EVERYONE who does the same thing did it for the right reasons. 

 

Yes, my kids are gifted. My youngest who started K on schedule at 4 is also dyslexic and dysgraphic which pulls down his achievement. He's way ahead in some areas and struggling to be average in others. I got plenty of negative comments about sending him on schedule but I knew him, I knew the school, I did the research and I made the decision. I don't feel bad when those around me say things like "no boy should ever have to start kindergarten at 4." I know I did the right thing and that's that. I also don't feel bad when people bash grade acceleration. Yes, I will continue to support it for the right candidates. I concede it's not for all but I'm not going to take it personally because I know it was the right decision for our child.

 


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#66 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 10:36 AM
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Thank you kathymuggle!   So reasonable!    

  


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#67 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 10:38 AM
 
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I don't think Lab was totally off the mark in sensing some judgement not just towards redshirting in general, but also those parents who do it.  See a few cut and pastes above.  I know many of you also said parents should have a little leeway if they are near cut-off dates.  I am not trying to start an argument or take this thread off course  (I am actually quite tired of threads that dissolve into threads on judgment on MDC!) but she isn't coming out of left field.

 

 

 

When ever you snip up posts or someone has a opinion other then yours on a message board it comes out as "Judgmental' to some people.  If I go snip up Lab's post it's very judgmental to parents who choose to send their younger kids on time. We read into posts what we want to see sometimes. I thought most people were quite polite. Nobody got rude, most people agreed there should be some leeway for parents to decided even if we did feel holding back is getting out of control. If anything I might find the term red shirting in general offensive.... I think I will try not to use that term anymore....

 

none of my kids are gifted BTW. thumb.gif
 

 

 

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#68 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 11:10 AM
 
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I would also like to (somewhat hesitantly) point out that many of the people who have have posted on this thread have gifted children.  I know this because the posters have said so before or they hang out on the gifted forum.  While this does not negate their  experience, I also think it is fair to say that an exceptionally bright young -for-dates child might have a different experience than a more typical child.

 That is true in our instance.  Both of my girls are highly gifted and the younger one, the one we starting just a hair early, is twice exceptional.

 

It's interesting that you bring the gifted aspect up b/c I was thinking about that exact thing after I posted last.  I didn't know that either of my girls was gifted when they started school, but was figuring it out around the time the second started.  I actually think that the significant misunderstanding of what gifted is among many educators and parents with whom I am familiar is part of what makes the whole waiting a year to start kids thing harder for me.

 

Gifted and high achieving are pretty much viewed as the same thing where I live.  About 15% or so of the kids are identified as gifted.  Kids are put on "watch lists" for gifted identification starting in kindergarten and it is often the older kids who are recommended for the "watch list" by teachers b/c they are sometimes higher achieving due to having done two years of K (we get a lot of this -- one year choiced to a different school and then come to the neighborhood school or one year of private and then start in the neighborhood school) or just b/c they are older and have more life experience.  Thus, it muddies the water even further and perpetuates the belief among educators that gifted kids are one and same as kids who are reading fairly well by 1st grade, for instance.

 

It makes it that much harder to get into GT programming later if you weren't identified to be watched early on and given enrichment in the things that you will later be tested on for admission to the program.  It also makes it that much harder for kids who just process differently to get their needs met in GT programs when they are full of kids who aren't necessarily different in the same way, but just earlier out of the gate or older at the start when they are being assessed for achievement.

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Originally Posted by whatsnextmom View Post

 

I'm speaking as a witness to what happens when red-shirting becomes commonplace and yes, the more common, the less research and thought go into the decision.

 


yeah -- some of us who live where red shirting is common are just saying what happens -- and it ain't pretty.

 



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If anything I might find the term red shirting in general offensive.... I think I will try not to use that term anymore....

 

none of my kids are gifted BTW. thumb.gif
 

 

 


 

Red shirting comes from the practice of holding kids back to give them an unfair advantage in competitive in sports. It's odd to me how the term has evolved.

 

For the record, both my kids are gifted, and both are in age appropriate grades. Both have at times received acceleration in specific subjects.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#70 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 11:49 AM
 
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I would also like to (somewhat hesitantly) point out that many of the people who have have posted on this thread have gifted children.  I know this because the posters have said so before or they hang out on the gifted forum.  While this does not negate their  experience, I also think it is fair to say that an exceptionally bright young -for-dates child might have a different experience than a more typical child.

 


Yes, my oldest is gifted. He did just fine in a class where the majority of the class was 6 and he was fine. He actually skipped and does just fine in a classroom where many kids are two years older than him (rampant red-shirting and a single grade skip). The trend doesn't actually hurt my gifted child. It does make me irritated that early admitance and skipping makes people horrified and state laws actually prevent early admitance, yet holding your kids back a year is common place. I do support a parent doing their research, looking at their individual child and making the best decision for their family. I wish it went both ways. But that is besides the point.

 

I belive the snip from me above came from a post where I also mentioned that I support parents who do what is best for their child and can understand the pressures that contribute to that decision expecially where it is a common practice. That doesn't mean it should be a common practice. I simply commented on what I have observed, in the parents I know who hold their kids back a year. Trust me I know a lot of them. I actually don't know a single person who sent their March or later boy on time. One turned into a huge bully as the biggest and oldest in the class. One was identified with learning issues that his mother wishes they would have caught earlier instead of delaying school start as maturity was not the issue, but a learning disability was. In neither of these cases did the delayed entry cause the kids problems, but it certainally didn't help them. Many others find themselves bored in class and needing more differentiation, moved to gifted/high achievers classes, etc.

 

My youngest is not identified as gifted. We are now facing issues with the class being taught towards kids who are 6 with 3 years of preschool. At the parent teacher conference the teacher was very concerned about her, age appropriate, "delay" in knowing all her alphabet letters names and sounds.

 

Delaying entrance to K is common here and it is not a good trend to have.


 

 


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#71 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 12:04 PM
 
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Quote:
I would like to see positive examples of starting a 4 year old in Kindergarten.     I read a lot of posts where redshirting was not a positive to other kids.  But give me an example of a July 25th birthday boy starting school on August 2nd from a positive point of view.    Seriously. 

 

 

I normally participate in these threads and hadn't gotten around to this one.   I saw your request and decided I'd post here.   My DS is a June birthday and started school as a newly turn 5 year old, 6 weeks after his birthday (my DD is actually a late Aug birthday who started at 4, but you asked for examples with boys, so I'll talk about him first).   It would have been a disaster for him to wait a year.   As it was, he went to a 2nd/3rd grade class 2x per week and to the library 2x per week in place of language arts.   His writing was on target for a K student and his math was on target as well.   If we had held him out or given him the gift of time, he would have been bored out of his mind.   Granted, he's now identified as GT and has moved to a center based school for first grade, but in his class, there were plenty of summer boys who were fine in K.

 

In our area, red-shirting seems to ebb and flow.   My DD's year there was rampant red-shirting (and many of the families were explicit that it was sports related), so my DD is 15+ months younger than most of the kids in her Math/Reading group.   She started out K not reading and made massive progress throughout the year and by first grade, she was in the highest reading group.   Socially she does well -- she's good at sports, music, makes friends easily, etc.   Most of her teachers will tell us that they would never have guessed she's the youngest in her class.   She's got a GT designation in Math, but in general is just a high achiever type of kid. 

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#72 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 03:12 PM
 
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This is a very interesting topic to me. I'm an October birthday myself as well as gifted, and my mom was offered the option of holding me back and went ahead and put me in kindergarten because she thought I'd be bored at home. I was always the youngest or one of the youngest in my class. Academically I did well, but socially and in terms of executive functioning I was behind the other kids in my class (and often friends with kids 1-2 years younger, while being a pariah in my own class), and this persisted for years. I'm not sure if I would have done better being held back or not--I was academically ahead of grade anyway most of the time. I also wasn't taught any social skills whatsoever by my family, so that could be part of the problem.

 

Anyway, I now have a June baby so in a few years I'll have to think about this too. The odds are she'll be gifted/highly intelligent--she gets it from both sides. Yet I'm open to the idea of considering her social development as well as her academic development when making that decision. I don't want her to have a repeat of my experience. (My husband, an August birthday, was also put ahead and says he was among the youngest and there were kids a year+ older than him but he doesn't think it affected him much.)


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I would also like to (somewhat hesitantly) point out that many of the people who have have posted on this thread have gifted children.  I know this because the posters have said so before or they hang out on the gifted forum.  

 

 

That's why I didn't use my own young-for-grade kids as examples, but instead wrote about my dd's even younger, non-gifted classmate. Yes, the sample may a little skewed, but you can't write off all the anecdotes on that basis.

 

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#74 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 04:23 PM
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I have one child who is not gifted and has ADHD who was old for his grade (Jan. bday with a Dec. cut-off). He has struggled with writing despite being older and if he'd been near the cut-off, I think I would have red-shirted him. Being one of the oldest has been great for him socially.

I have another child who is gifted, who started K at 4 (Dec. bday with an Oct. cut-off). He is doing great academically and socially. He's a bit smaller than a lot of his classmates (who are all 6.5-7.5 and he's not yet 6) but otherwise, no one can tell he's so young and a lot of people have no idea. 

My daughter is too young for school but has a July birthday so we will have to decide whether to red-shirt her or not when the time comes. So we're pretty much on every side of this. 

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#75 of 75 Old 11-10-2011, 05:09 PM
 
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. Yet I'm open to the idea of considering her social development as well as her academic development when making that decision. I don't want her to have a repeat of my experience.


Just to further complicate the issue ... a poor academic fit can exacerbate social and behavioral challenges. So sometimes an advanced child who seems immature in 1st grade will fit beautifully into a 2nd grade classroom because the learning is more relevant and meaningful, which reduces boredom and misbehavior.

 

A related situation sometimes occurs with redshirted kids. They get to 4th or 5th grade, schoolwork lacks challenge, and their peri-adolescent sensibilities and interests don't fit in well with their younger classmates, leading them to be viewed as louts with bad attitude, whereas they're nothing but older. That can translate into behavior and attitude issues that could be improved by "grade correction" into the next grade up, where they get a better fit socially.

 

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