Kids School

To Begin Kindergarten or Not to Begin Kindergarten? That is the question.

 

Asher, who turned six on May 5th, is ready for Kindergarten this year!

 

Well it’s that time of year. Kids all over the country are now having trouble deciding what to tell people when they ask what grade they are in. Our oldest usually answers, “Well I’m almost in third grade.” And he is. The school year is coming to a close, summer is around the corner, and Kindergarten roundups are happening.

            So the all-important question comes up in almost every conversation with anyone who has a preschooler in the home. “So will you be sending your child to Kindergarten this year?” You answer as best you can and wait for the approval or disapproval of the person asking because you truly aren’t sure of what to do either because of your child’s young age. And that’s okay.

This is a hard decision, but let me make it easier on you…don’t do it.

            I realize this sounds harsh, but I have reasoning, experience, and research ready to go. I don’t have a “right” to tell you what to do, so feel free to dismiss my advice if you feel so inclined. But I will tell you that seven years of experience as a special education and general education teacher in middle school, hundreds of professional relationships with other teachers, and years of research have my mind set. I realize that some may not like what I have to say, but I speak the truth. Might your child be okay? Sure! Not every kid is the same. But the vast majority of children whom are started in Kindergarten too early tend to struggle. And I would rather help society avoid that issue…even if I am wrong in some cases.

            So let’s dive right in. Remember I only use “he” because I have two boys and I’m used to it. Most of the time I hear parents give one of the following reasons for beginning their child in preschool too early and I have a rebuttal for every one:

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About the author

Bailey Koch

The story of Bailey Koch finding her love for and strength in writing begins with near tragedy. In February of 2012, Bailey’s husband was nearly killed in a head-on collision with a semi truck. As a method of getting information to friends and family, Bailey began a Caring Bridge page. Immediately, others began commenting that Bailey should be a writer. “Yeah right!” Bailey thought. “There’s no way I could do that!”

“Never Alone: A Husband and Wife’s Journey with Depression and Faith” was published in March 2015 and is written by Jeremy and Bailey Koch. It details their struggles with severe depression and the journey toward understanding their purpose, accepting help, and finding faith. High school sweethearts, Jeremy and Bailey know their lives were meant for each other and to help others by being honest about their story. They are proud parents of two beautiful, and often rambunctious, boys. Hudson and Asher are 10 and 7 years old. You can learn more about their journey and even purchase the eBook or paperback copy of “Never Alone” at www.jeremyandbailey.com.

Jeremy and Bailey found their purpose in helping others find hope when suffering from a disability, especially unseen illnesses like depression. Jeremy, who suffers from suicidal thoughts, continues to learn to live, not simply stay alive, through hope from God and the acceptance of help. Bailey is his biggest supporter and left her teaching job, after being in public education for seven years, to focus on what the two know to be God’s plan. Bailey now works as a Lecturer in Teacher Education at the University of Nebraska at Kearney and will graduate with her doctoral degree in Special Education from Walden University sometime in 2018. Jeremy and Bailey co-own and operate Natural Escapes, a landscaping and greenhouse services business that also includes a paint your own pottery and canvas family art studio. The passion to advocate for those who can’t easily advocate for themselves is strong. Bailey has a message of hope and acceptance for all; she has plans to completely demolish the societal stigma attached to mental illness.

2 Comments

  • I agree with all of this! While my kids birthday’s are in November and December so it was never a question for us, my mom and husband started school early (back when the cut off to turn 5 was in October). They have both said it wasn’t grade school that was the problem it was high school and starting college at 17. My sister’s birthday is in August and my mom had her wait to start school, based on her college experiences and being so young.

  • 2 boys, both July birthdays & both on the small side which for boys can be huge as peer pressure starts. I knew my older son wasn’t ready although now it’s funny that he never did learn to write cursive.

    There are simply reading readiness skills which kids have or they don’t, like cutting & coloring (Jason didn’t). We were fortunate that our school system had a pre-K, pre-1st followed by regular 1st grade … and that’s what they both did, or we would have held them out for another year.