5 Things to Consider when Making the Kindergarten Registration Decision
Listen to the advice of the teachers, friends, and professionals that encounter your child, but know that the decision is yours and it should be based on the best interests of your individual child.
2. Ask your child’s preschool teacher to provide you with concrete, objective examples of the differences they see in your child in comparison to the class.
Objective examples are easier to evaluate and will better help steer decisions. A teacher's opinion or general statements can sometimes feel personal and make parents understandably defensive.
3. There is a wide range of skill level in each area of development.
Your child does not have to be at the top of the class in every area, or in any area for that matter. If it’s just one area that is challenging, perhaps some extra support is in order. Examining challenging areas may provide insight on the child’s learning style. It can also identify strengths in other areas to celebrate!
4. Will another year of preschool significantly reduce the concerns about your child’s development?
This is hard to predict, but consider whether or not your child has responded well to the efforts made thus far. If your child has improved as a result of a new strategy or increased attention in a certain area, maybe another year with increased focus on the challenge will allow opportunity for significant growth. On the other hand, if multiple strategies have been tried and there hasn’t been much change, it is probably safe to assume that another year of preschool isn’t going to bridge that gap.
5. Kindergarten readiness is about more than academics.
Consider your child’s self confidence, emotional maturity, and social development as well. Creating a pro and con list weighing all areas of development and the opportunities available can often make the decision clear.
If you have concerns about your child’s development, intervene early. It doesn't take long for a child to develop a belief that they are not strong or not smart. Protect their self esteem by catching it before that happens. The sooner you can address the "wrinkles in development," the greater the chance to smooth them out before negative impact occurs. The longer you wait, the more difficult those challenges will be to tackle. BDI Playhouse provides free screening and consultations; if you have questions about your child’s development, we are here to answer them. Call 708-478-1820 or fill out the online form on our screenings page to schedule an appointment in Orland Park or Naperville.
Janis Bautz, MA
Early Childhood Educator
President of BDI Playhouse Children’s Therapy