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  1. #1
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    OT - moving daughter up a grade - opinions?

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    This is majorly OT, but thought I'd post it here to get a wide point of view from TE...

    As some of you know - I'm switching jobs and moving to Louisiana. My daughter (FishJr) is currently in 4K. She is having fun, but is bored and dissappointed because she says she isn't learning anything. She is doing math (addition and some subtraction), can write all of her letters, her name, and numerous other words, etc. She's mature for her age (emotionally and intellectually) and her teacher suggested that we put her in Kindergarten when we move.

    I know we have some teachers here and others with opinions. What do you think? Is there any benefit to advancing a child a grade at this age? I've looked at the curriculum for the school that she will attend and she's already doing what they are supposed to accomplish in the first quarter of Kindergarten and some of the second quarter as well.

    We've talked with her about it and she says she want to make the jump to K. I don't want to put too much pressure on her.
    *******************
    Elizabee (age 5) at the doctor's office: "I can smell sickness in here...I smell the germs"

  2. #2
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    what is 4K?
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  3. #3
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    4-year old Kindergarten. They learn letters, colors, numbers, days of the week, etc. It's 4K/Pre-K, but is a full day at elementary school, not a daycare center.
    *******************
    Elizabee (age 5) at the doctor's office: "I can smell sickness in here...I smell the germs"

  4. #4
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    Disclaimer - I'm not a Mom!

    I would contact the school at your new town, and see if you can talk it over with the kindergarden teacher there. That teacher may have an opinion!

    My niece is three, and is very verbal and smart (I swear it's not just my bias!)... she is in daycare a few days each week, and they moved her in with the four-year-olds because she didn't want to have to keep playing with the "babies."

    Obviously - this is your kid, so you need to make the decision. I was the youngest in my class all through school, and it was fine... I didn't feel any problems or differences developmentally compared to the older kids in my grade.

    Good luck!

  5. #5
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    I'm not a teacher, I'm a mom. I think the maturity level is the most important
    thing. My two sons were very bright, but very immature. My older son was
    on the cusp, could have gone to school with the older group, but we decided against it, and it was a good thing. (we could have kept him out of school
    until he was 10 and it would have been a good thing) but i digress.
    If she's mature, doesn't mind being the littlest, and the teacher is cool with it; it's a great idea. That was my personal experience, (being the youngest
    and smallest in my own school experience) and i don't think it hurt me a bit (it was good for my ego, instead!)

    mimi
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  6. #6
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    Jul 2006
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    Maybe this will help

    My sister skipped 5th grade and later when on to college at the age of 16. She loved books, school, learning and is now a professor. It worked for her great!

    On the other hand, my 5th grade teacher told my parents that I should skip 5th grade. My parents and my teacher asked me and since I love sports, people, social stuff, etc., I did not want to skip a grade. I did not skip and it worked out for me.

    So, I think it really depends on the child, the child's likes and wants, the level of boredom, and WHAT THE CHILD WANTS>

    I know she is really young, but ask her!

  7. #7
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    I would definitely recommend it at that age. I do not have any children, but I did skip a grade (2nd), went to school with other gifted children, and had a BF who skipped THREE grades.

    When I was moved up I felt lost at first. It wasn't because of the lessons -- those were simple -- it was leaving all the peers with whom I had grown up. It wasn't like moving away and not seeing them anymore. It was moving to the next classroom and being forced to make new friends when your old ones are just yards away. In your daughter's case, she doesn't have this issue, so I say go for it.

    Regardless of how tough it can be, I don't like the idea of holding kids back. One of the traits I noticed with bright kids who were restricted to their age level is a sense of arrogance and entitlement. They KNOW they are quicker than their peers and unless they are continually challenged, their boredom could have less positive results. And yes, I speak from experience.

    I recall being an obnoxious little turd until I was put in my proper place. Luckily, I had excellent teachers and counselors thoughout my pre-collegiate education who looked out for me and challenged me at every turn.

  8. #8
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    My birthday is in November and I couldn't start public school until I was six. So my parents sent me to private school for kindergarten and first grade. I was six when I entered 2nd grade in public schools.

    My son has an October birthday so the same thing applied. We sent him to preschool and then kindergarten. At the end of kindergarten the teacher and principal met with us to discuss whether or not he should go into first grade or repeat Kindergarten.

    He was very intelligent -- the question was never about academics. He'd been somewhat immature earlier in the year and had matured toward the end of the year. They said they really couldn't advise us in one way or the other -- that if his immaturity had kept up they would definitely have advised us to have him repeat, but now we were kind of at an in between place.

    But the principal told me something I've never forgotten. She said, "You'll never regret having your son be one of the oldest and most mature in his class. You may regret it if he's one of the youngest and least mature."

    That slammed home, and we had him repeat.

    We NEVER regretted it, even though we were immediately deluged with phone calls from moms who couldn't believe we were holding him back, because he was so far ahead of their own kids who were going into first grade. They kept telling us we shouldn't do it. But we did, and were glad.

    Looking back on things, I think it's highly likely I would have done better if I'd waited to start school instead of going early. I know of ways my own maturity (or lack of it) put me in some situations that I wouldn't have gotten in with a year's more experience under my belt.

    If it were me, I'd be looking for ways to stimulate my daughter's intellect (in or out of class) without moving her ahead a year. By the time you're a teenager, there are enough challenges out there without adding being younger than your peers to them.

    “Hey, clearly failure doesn’t deter me!”

  9. #9
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    Thanks for the advice! I knew I'd get a good response from TE, as usual.

    We have talked it over with daughter. She keeps telling me that she wants to learn to write more words (we do this in the afternoons) and she's constanstly adding things together. She's halfway through a Kindergarten Math workbook. So, yes, we give her plenty of stimulation at home.

    I was always young for my grade and did well. Most of her friends are older than her.

    The school will evaluate her to identify whether or not she is gifted. And - yes, of course, we will talk with the teachers.

    She'll do fine, regardless. She's already bored and school has only been in session for 3 weeks! This is my concern. She calls it "play class".
    *******************
    Elizabee (age 5) at the doctor's office: "I can smell sickness in here...I smell the germs"

  10. #10
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    Well, sounds like the daughter is willing.
    I think there's a huge difference between boys and girls.
    I don't think you'll regret moving her up, but do heed
    what others said here, she will still tend to be bored even if she skips a grade or two and you will have to keep her interests and challenges up at home (she can do bee experiments with you!)
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  11. #11
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    My son (now 21) was the youngest in his class. His birthday is 8/31 which is the cutoff for our school system. He has excelled in school, sports and socially.

    My friend's daughter skipped a grade and is the youngest in her peer group. At age 13 or 14 when with friends a whole year older, it can cause problems of 'growing up' too fast and/or trying and learning things at too young an age. She is now 16 with classmates 17 and 18. She expects to be able to have the priviledges of the 17/18 year olds. Needless to say, her mom is having problems with her. But she has done great academically.

    Tough decision, I'm sure. Good luck with it!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by fishdr
    She keeps telling me that she wants to learn to write more words (we do this in the afternoons) and she's constanstly adding things together. She's halfway through a Kindergarten Math workbook. So, yes, we give her plenty of stimulation at home.
    That's so funny! I used to beg my older brother (by 3 years) to let me do his math homework. He thought it a chore - I thought it was fun. Integers? Negative numbers? A whole new world! I used to do it secretly until Mommy caught on and put a stop to it. My brother got punished for "making" little sis do his homework, probably because she couldn't imagine anyone WANTING to do math of their own free will.

    Yeah, I know, what a dork I was. Bro is still bitter. I ended up at math camp.
    Last edited by Bluetree; 08-31-2006 at 11:05 AM.

  13. #13
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    Would you be moving this school year? If so, what is the policy/position of the school your daughter will be attending?

    This is a very personal decision and you will most likely hear people voicing opinions for both sides.

    I have taught school and I am a parent. I purposefully held all three of my boys back. They were all very advanced and to this day are. They are in middle school, all in gifted/advanced classes, and extremely well adjusted and secure. It was suggested my oldest skip a grade. I refused. As it stands he is a middle schooler taking HS classes, which will be on his college transcripts (even though he is a bright student, try explaining to a young teen just how important a transcript is). Here they allow certain 7th and 8th graders to take the SAT. My oldest was asked last year and we said no. He has plenty of time to take it when he is older. No harm was done. All three of my children are boys, and yes, boys are indeed different than girls, especially when it comes to maturity. Looking back, I would not change any decsion I made.

    With all that said, it is a very personal choice, and not one to be taken lightly.

    I do suggest you contact the schoool your daughter will be attending and find out what their policies are, if you have not already done so.
    Jennifer

    “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
    -Mahatma Gandhi

    "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit."
    -Aristotle

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bluetree
    That's so funny! I used to beg my older brother (by 3 years) to let me do his math homework. He thought it a chore - I thought it was fun.
    LOL, Bluetree. I have a similar childhood story. My twin brother and I had different teachers in our early grades, and his started giving homework before mine did, and I was soooooo envious that he got to do homework and I didn't. What a little nerd I was, too! I bugged my mom about it so much that she started making up little assignments for me to do. Weird kid!
    Bad JuJu: Team TE Bianchista
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  15. #15
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    [QUOTE=pooks]But the principal told me something I've never forgotten. She said, "You'll never regret having your son be one of the oldest and most mature in his class. You may regret it if he's one of the youngest and least mature."

    That slammed home, and we had him repeat.

    We NEVER regretted it,


    This was/is exactly my experience also with my elder son (now 19)

    My mother would say also that she skipped my brother up a grade in the first or second year and she *always* regretted it till the day he died (and after I guess). He was both young and tiny even for his age. They put him "up" because he was not behaving because he was too smart and he continued not behaving because of his age and size. But it was the 60's in the suburbs and you didn't question the teacher

    When I was a kid we were 3 very gifted girls together for 6 years. This was enough smart company . They had a regional group for gifteds at one stage on Saturdays,but basically that was an experiment and we all met up again in the intermediate (junior high) school the following year anyway.
    I would periodically (later really menstrually!) tell my parents I was wasting my time with these thicko idiots and their response was " Look, you have to get on with all sorts of people so start learning to get on with them now." Which I think was good in retrospect because I had a good self image untainted by elitism or special treatment. I would also say that being in school is much more than just getting knowledge and grades .

    I think that as long as you *can* do what everybody else does you should;because if (when!) the day comes that you can't "They" are more tolerant of your "deviance" than if you have been a "weirdo" all thru. (Voice of experience!)

    I would wait and see if there are a few other smart-ies in her new class.
    Last edited by margo49; 08-31-2006 at 12:27 PM.

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