Does entering kindergarten late improve a child's academic performance?

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From a neuroscientist's point of view -

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This relates to the whole "Dumb them Down" theory. Personally I find it hard to believe that we're even having this conversation. Coming from a neuroscientist's point of view this is the most important time of a child's life for developing learning skills. Have you ever heard of the pruning process? This whole idea of not giving a young mind all of the information, and more that it can possibly absorb is one of the main reasons that we are so far behind in educating our youth. Commonly we underestimate the ability's of young student's and assume that something is too difficult for a student -- but what is too difficult? Something that challenges the mind? I hear over and over again from teachers that something is too difficult for a student before they even give them a chance to try.

By challenging a young mind and offering real world information, information that a young mind finds interesting and of value, as much information that a child is willing to entertain is what helps to develop a more complete brain. Our education process, mainly made up of book learning and direct instruction primarily develops the left brain or the left hemisphere of the brain. What we should be doing for our youth is offering information in as many different platforms of media as possible to help develop both the left and right brain or left and right hemisphere's of the brain. By developing a more complete brain a young mind may develop their own cognitive learning skills, skills that are crucial for the whole learning process and the best time to do this is when a kid is young and curious, ready to absorb information "like a sponge".

Holding student's back for a year is only doing harm to a student. We know that student's who are exposed to real world information and real world experiences at a young age develop their learning behaviors or skills earlier than students who are not. These are the same students that score higher in their test scores not to mention that they are the same student's who are much less likely to drop out of school because they find value in what is being offered to them in their education. By being able to relate information to a real world experience or being able to reference information from a real world picture, video or life experience a student can relate themselves to the information that is being offered and therefore process and use the information in a way that a young mind wishes to according to their own personal interests.

It all starts at the beginning, prior to kindergarten. A child is learning before they can speak even. We shouldn't be thinking about increasing the age of student's before they are able to enter kindergarten, what we should be doing is finding better ways to educate our youth during the preschool age. If we hold our youth back another year before we give them the chance to begin their learning career we can expect to have an even larger drop out rate and lower test scores than we already do.

Think about this. Why do we still have the same education process that we had hundreds of years ago when we were an industrial country? Shouldn’t we try to develop each and every child’s full potential? What makes you think a child can’t or isn’t learning at a young age, the age of 5 or younger? Is it because they are telling you they aren’t learning?

Kindergarten cut-offs arbitrary

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My son turns 5 twenty-five days after our local cut-off. I will be sending him to private Kindergarten -- a decision I don't make lightly, as I am a public school teacher.

From experience, I disagree with some educators I've spoken to -- and some of the posters here -- who think a young Kindergartner won't have the advantages or "creativity" that someone starting older would have. I was a young five when I started Kindergarten, skipped third grade, and went to an excellent school before entering a creative field (before teaching.) My husband skipped Kindergarten completely and also entered a creative field. Neither of us would trade the advantage of that extra year we got post-high school, being younger than our fellow graduates with more "time" to pursue graduate studies, etc.

My husband and I were also both bored out of our minds through much of our early school careers. I was the overachiever, but he was the one who acted out and didn't do his homework because he didn't see the point. My son is very similar, and I know I can't trust the differentiation skills of his future teachers to keep the content interesting. I have to consider that our middle school and high school still practice tracking.

You can't tell me that those 25 days between the cut-off and my son's birthday make him any more "ready" for school.

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Here we go again with test scores. Has anyone considered what's best for the child? I'm tired of the factory mentality of education.

Age? or Parental involvement in Child's learning

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I have little knowledge of the sector, but I do wonder whether more educated parents (probably on higher incomes also) might tend to spend more time with their kids teaching them before kindergarten. It is these parents who are also more likely to make an 'informed' decision as to whether their child is 'ready' gor kindergarten. (A deciosion that they have the luxury to afford.)

So... the data is possibly skewed. "On average... children who start kindergarten later have had richer pre-kindi experiences than those who start earlier."

Wrong!

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Your wrong if you think that a child can't sit still and learn. A young mind is like a sponge - wanting to absorb new and useful information. The typical approach towards learning has been the same since the industrial revolution and we're way beyond changing the failing system of academic teaching. A new approach should have been implemented years ago since we aren't an industrial country like we used to be. It's completely necessary to provide as much information to a young child as possible before the stages of the first pruning process, usually between 3-5 years where neurons will die off if they aren't being used. Curriculum that is offered to a young mind is typically not seen as being useful to a child, resulting in "not paying attention or not sitting still". If the child is offered the proper curriculum they will become engaged and enjoy learning and absorb more information than you are giving them credit to do. A real world environment is what a child sees as being useful, not animation or cartoon images. If you provide the proper stimulation to a young mind it will become engaged and interested in learning - resulting in a child that can sit still and learn.

Your wrong!

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The earlier the better. Why do you want to delay the learning process? Children want to learn, maybe you need a different approach since the same approach has been used for what .... I don't know -200 years now. It doesn't work your right about that anyway. Let's try something different.

There are a lot of arguments

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There are a lot of arguments from both sides (advocates of earlier or later admission). No one should forget, that parental care, especially in early years of young human, is something that could not be overestimated. It is not only the matter of education, but also emotional development of child.

www.kindergarten-duesseldorf.de

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There are a lot of arguments from both sides (advocates of earlier or later admission). No one should forget, that parental care, especially in early years of young human, is something that could not be overestimated. It is not only the matter of education, but also emotional development of child.

www.kindergarten-duesseldorf.de

Parents know best

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My grandson will be 5 on July 16, 2010, his parents feel he should wait another year to start school. I grew up in a very different time.
I think the parents have my grandsons best interest at heart.Both of his parents are well educated and are doing what they feel is best.
And I am OK with that.
Elizabeth DeNicola

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totally agree with that too! if i start my boy in kindergarten (who is into playing and being loud)at the age of 5 he will be 8 months younger than my daughter was when she started and does exceptional. there is no way he would be able to handle a full day of school 5 days a week. if kindergarten was still 1/2 days i would consider sending him anyways. i wonder if kindergarten teachers feel like glorified babysitters?

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