Sunday, May 24, 2009

Stop whining! You kids are soft. You lack discipline.

I'm struggling with a tough decision. Spencer is having difficulty in his kindergarten. He is behind where he should be at the end of the year with reading. His teacher asked us about two months ago to start thinking about the possibility of holding him back and repeating kindergarten. His teacher said that socially he is right where he should be to enter 1st grade. She said that he doesn't struggle with math. It's just the reading that he lacks skills with. She said that he would be behind and possibly struggle through first grade. She said it might be hard for him to catch up.

Since meeting with her, I have thought about it a lot. I believe that he is socially right where he should be. I believe that when he started Kindergarten, he wasn't behind the other kids. I worry that it is something I did or didn't do with him. We read books together and do his homework, but we don't do workbooks or flashcards or anything like that.

If I do workbooks or flashcards with him over the summer, is that time enough to catch him up? I see progress already between when we met several months ago and today.

For some reason, my gut says I should send him on to first grade. But I am still very unsure--could go either way. Anyone have good experience with this? Any teachers out there have advice for me?


Anonymous said...

I love the book Teach your chid to read in 100 easy lessons. I taught Devin with it, and it worked wonders. you can borrow it if you want. Don't know what to tell you about him stayin or going, I'm sorry you have to make a tough decision! The Loosli's and Winders have also used this book, I think Spencer would find success using it also. -Angela

Brenda said...

I don't pretend to have any answers -- just another question. Who says they are supposed to be able to read before they get out of kindergarten?? If he is learning the letters and the sounds they make then sounding out words will come with practise. I don't see that as problem enough to keep him back especially when he is doing fine otherwise.

Suzy said...

We had similar problems with Ave. She was the youngest in her 1st grade class and was behind where the other kids were (although I've heard it's different with boys/girls). Anyway, the point is it took her until almost Christmas to catch up, but after we moved she made a huge leap and was reading much better in Jan. than she had been in the Fall. I think he'd probably catch up by the first of the year or at least the end of 1st grade. The thing is we had to be really diligent with reading the 20 min. every night and doing all the extra stuff, which is time consuming and hard. Maybe Emily and Christopher and Grandparents can help too. You can decide all the way up until August, can't you? Good luck!!

Teresa Murphy said...

I think all of my kids learned to read with the Book of Mormon. We just had them take their turn "reading" with the family. I think it is a great blessing of the BoM!
And, I say go with your instinct!!

GramMO said...

I say your "Gut" is a great thing to follow. Do you know if your school has "reading Recovery " teachers? They are specifically trained, meet with him 30min each day and he "graduates" from the program when he is at or beyond where the classroom children are. The teachers figure out where the hold up is and move them on. Google "Reading Recovery" It's an amazing thing. Especially if this is the only area of concern.
I wished we lived closer.

Sara said...

I've known several children who couldn't read until they were 7. (Mostly in our wards here and there...) And in 1st grade, they review a LOT of kindergarten material the first 2 months to make sure everyone is relatively on the same page before they move forward with reading skills.

My suggestion is to find out what reading programs they offer through the district and consult with first grade teachers that you may know to get their input. It may help to have his eyes and learning style evaluated. Both can impact skill aquisition (visual/verbal/kinesthetic styles)

The kindgergarten teacher is liable if she doesn't inform you of a "concern". It may be something that he'll acquire in a few more months and then take off and then it will no longer be a concern!

Find out if there is someone at the elementary school that has a masters degree in literacy. They can work wonders.

Overall, you need to do what's best for your child. Holding him back for another year in KG because his reading is a bit behind may be worse than taking him aside for extra tutoring for a few months in first grade. I can envision boredom and behavior problems because he's past all of that already. Weigh options, go with your gut. Hugs, Sara

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