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Thread: Would you apply if it were your son?

  1. #1

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    Question Would you apply if it were your son?

    Ok, we have enquired about getting DS tested for early acceptance into kindy down here.

    He turns 4 on the 10th January. Their cut off for school is they have to turn 4 by the 1st Jan, so he's only 9 days off the cut off date.

    If we were still in Queensland, he would be going to school next year because their cut off date is in April (so my SIL told me).

    We have to get him tested, and fill out a few forms, and get him an appointment with a child psychologist to assess him and then a committee decides whether or not to let him go into school early.

    We talked to the principal of a good school this morning, and he said that there is nothing wrong with letting them stay home that extra year (so he will be basically a year older than other kids if he goes when he is 5) and it can help them develop leadership qualities and all the other kids would look up to him. He made it sound like a bad thing that we are thinking of letting him be tested for early acceptance. Like, we should be waiting because who wouldn't want their kid at the top of the class (which is what he also said) and who wouldn't want a leader.



    We sorta think that if he's going to be a "leader" type, then its his personality that will determine that. Plus he's the oldest child, so a "leader" personality might be developing anyway. We are scared that if he stays at home another year, he won't make the most of his "smarts" - cos he is smart. He knows his colours (his 4.5 year old cousin doesn't) and is learning what two colours you put together to make another colour. He can write his own name (only the y is backwards, all the other letters are fine). He recognises letters and numbers. He can do basic addition (if I had 2 bananas and gave you one, how many would I have left kind of thing).

    Should I be pushing for the assessment to be done, or should we leave it? I think the most annoying thing is that its less than 2 weeks he misses out by his birthday, and who says a child who was born on the 31st December is more ready for school than he is, yet they get in automatically? Just doesn't seem fair.

    (Plus he would probably drive me bananas staying at home all the time.. LOL)

    So would you do the assessment? I'm leaning towards yes, and if they say he isn't ready, so be it. But if I don't even get him to do it.. then I'd be left wondering what if ya know?

  2. #2

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    if i was 100% confident that he'd cope with it, then yes i'd send him.
    My brother started at 4, at the end of the yr the teachers thought he's benifit staying down a yr, he knew no different because he was so young.
    If i wasnt too confidenti'd send him to 4 yr old kinder.
    Good luck hun, its a tough one

  3. #3

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    If you think he is ready then I would try. I had someone telling me the other day their kid was driving them crazy with the "I'm bored" but he was a bit too young to start school at the beginning of the year, now that it's halfway through the year she can tell he is definitely ready to go!

    ETA: I started school when I was 4 1/2 (so a year younger than everyone else) and (not to sound up myself or anything!) did really well at school and ended up with a great UAI and HSC results. I'm definitely not a leader, but obviously starting a bit early did me no harm.

  4. #4

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    There isn't another kinder they can go to down here, just childcare, which is what he goes to at the moment, they have a pre-kinder program there, and he does 2 days a week. I'm going to quiz his carers as to what they think as well. But its either he gets into school next year, or goes to daycare for another year (which is about $100 a fortnight more expensive!)

  5. #5

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    My daughter had a free assessment with CYH when she was 4 to determine if she was ready for school sometime during her kindy year. They decided she was ready NOW but better to wait till the start of the next year - I was planning to move. Kindy is optional here and only a couple of days a week.

    Here you go to school/kindy/whatever in the term after you turn 4 (kindy) or 5 (school). My daughter's birthday is in early January too but in SA that meant she started at the start of the year. She's not the youngest kid in her class - she has friends a few months younger in her class (ie, born in term 1) as well as ones born the year before. Schools here can use their discretion whether or not to accept a child or make them do part of a year and then another full year of the first grade/kindy. Age means nothing. She's top of her class, and there's a kid in her class who has been held back a few times and is WAY older who is at the bottom of the class.

    Get the assessment done. If he's ready, he's ready.

  6. #6

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    Arimeh - not that it probably changes your situation but the cutoff in Qld for prep is they must be or turn 5 by the 30 June the year they are in prep or turn 4 by the 30 June to go to a C&K (community based) kindergarten/pre-prep program. Next years preppies will have been born between 1 July 2005 and 30 June 2006. In reality there is no harm getting him tested I wouldn't have thought I would have thought they will look at maturity as well as smarts and you'll at least know what they think - my 4 year old will be one of the babies next year and I am more worried about maturity than smarts in contrast with the others having seen it from my older sons perspective who was at the other end of the spectrum. I know that in my oldest DS sons class they watched some of the younger ones closely to see if they'd have to repeat a year generally because of maturity and how this was affecting their ability to learn

  7. #7

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    Jaspen - hmm not sure what my SIL was talking about then, she said the cut off used to be june, but now is april? Not that it matters to me of course, we're not moving back there at any time in the near future!!!

    I am worried about his maturity, but that could change heaps in 6 months anyway.. so it worries me getting the testing done NOW, when he wouldn't be going until Feb anyway...

  8. #8

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    My concern would be that he gets left behind. For example my DS is going to start school next year & he will be 6 in March, so potentially your DS will be competing against kids almost two years older than him. It might not be such a big deal at the moment but as he gets older & all of his friends are doing things ahead of him it might not be so good for him IYKWIM.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arimeh's Eden View Post
    childcare, which is what he goes to at the moment, they have a pre-kinder program there, and he does 2 days a week. I'm going to quiz his carers as to what they think as well.
    I would speak to his carers for sure- they would be in a position to give you some good advice about his skills in that environment.

    You know your son best so I can't answer really based on him as I don't know him, but I would err on the side of keeping him back a year. I think school readiness is more about ability to cope in social situations and emotional skills plus self-help skills such as dressing, rather than leadership (which as you said is personality based) and academics. I'd also be taking what the principal of the school said as important too- perhaps you can find out if his advice is what most other parents are doing? Then you'll know if your son is actually going to be the oldest or if other children his age will be held back too.

    My son's birthday is in March and children born Jan to April here can either go to school younger or older. We will be keeping him back so he is older and this is also what the majority of families in our area do so he wont be the "older one" iykwim. I also don't see the point in rushing to start school- some cultures don't start formal education till 8. Why start at 4?
    Last edited by meow; July 26th, 2010 at 01:05 PM. Reason: typo

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by {sarah} View Post
    My concern would be that he gets left behind. For example my DS is going to start school next year & he will be 6 in March, so potentially your DS will be competing against kids almost two years older than him. It might not be such a big deal at the moment but as he gets older & all of his friends are doing things ahead of him it might not be so good for him IYKWIM.
    exactly my thoughts its a tough decision.
    FWIW DD2 born in feb will be staying down, so she will be one of the older kids

  11. #11

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    I would have the assessment done. The worst that can happen is that they say no and he doesn't go. Sounds like he is academically more than ready to go.

    I know I've mainly worked with much older kids, but I have often seen really smart kids become trouble-makers because they are bored and just not challenged or stimulated by what they are doing at school. For that reason I'd certainly be sending him younger if he's quite smart.

    Is there a way the assessment can be redone at a later date if they say he's not socially ready now, but does appear to be more socially ready closer to the start date?

    BW

  12. #12

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    Oh - and he's a boy. Boys are rough.

    Physically, is he small or big? Don't really want to be a tiny dainty boy AND young, but if he's average or a strapping young thing he'll be fine.

  13. #13

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    I would get the assessment done, and then if he gets accepted but at the last minute you think he is not ready, then you can always turn it down? Is that possible? At least that keeps your options open... It is so hard to know what to do...... Not looking forward to getting to this point myself...

  14. #14

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    I'd definitely get the assessment done too. Aricyn is smart - I've had enough conversations with him to know that! Talking to his carers sounds like a good idea .

  15. #15

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    I would get the assessment done just so that you know your options. If they say he's not ready then you know what to do. I f they say that he is then you can weigh up the options. FWIW DD1 is 5 in Feb and she will be going to school next year. The cut off in Vic is April 30 and she is definitely ready to go to school from a social, emotional and academic perspective.

  16. #16

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    Girls are generally ready younger. Girls are more able to sit and pay attention from a younger age. Boys have so much testosterone running around their bodies it often gives them the wiggles, lack of attention span, a need to rough & tumble and generally speaking they will do better to wait as long as possible before starting school. These are ideas from Steve Biddulph who is a big advodate for boys starting school later.

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nai View Post
    ready to go to school from a social, emotional and academic perspective.
    That and also what Sarah said is how I would look at it.
    You could get the assessment done and use it to help you make a decision.

    What's the worst that could happend? Whatever the out come is of the assessment you would at least have an idea where he is at and can use all your information to make an informed decision.

  18. #18

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    Tough decision for you, my only experience is with my DH, he started school at 4/12 (this was when cut off in vic was 30th June, his birthday is 30th June). Anyway he ended up having to repeat grade 5 as he just wasn't coping not exactly sure in what areas. Anyway he said the best thing he ever did was repeat and his biggest thing with our children was he didn't want the born before 30th April as he didn't want to have to make that decisions. Our 3rd DS must have known his Daddy's feelings as he was born on the 1st of May, so he misses the cut off by 1 day he will potentially be in with children 1 year younger than him.

    I too would look at it in terms of he will be the little one in the group, potentially kids 2 years older than him will that them effect him, possible make his school experience harder. That being said I don't know his personaility, is him confident in group situations etc etc.

    Good luck, I'm sure you will make the right decision for him.

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