My granddaughter will be five years old in March. She is currently attending a preschool program for 4 year olds. She still gets the letters of the alphabet confused. She can write her name but may not recognize the letter when seen on a flashcard. She may know the letter one minute but not recognize it another. Her preschool teacher has not expressed any concerns to this point. Should she already be able to recognize all 26 letters of the alphabet? My daughter is very concerned and now she is making me worry. Our grandson is 7 and can read anything he picks up, has been able to since kindergarten. Are we wrongly comparing her to him? Please any advice is welcome!
Children vary with their attainment of developmental milestones, so please do not feel your granddaughter is delayed because she has not memorized her ABC's at four. Preschoolers attain many skills by four years of age across different categories such as fine and gross motor, language and social-emotional development. Sometimes, academic skills may take a back seat while they are working on other areas of development.
If you have strong concerns about her overall development then by all means the parents could contact the home school and ask for the preschool special education team. Make all requests in writing. The team should get back to the family and give them a date and time that is mutually agreeable to meet. The meeting will determine if your granddaughter needs any screenings, full assessments, academic testings, eye exams, etc.
In the meantime, please visit the many articles and activities listed here on Education.com. The articles are very helpful and a checklist of the skills can be made to determine what skills she has already attained! You may find that she is on target for her age group.
Also, there is an excellent readiness for kindergarten book that helps a child to learn and practice kindergarten skills. The book is titled, " Let's Get Ready for Kindergarten" by Stacey Kannenberg (Cedar Valley Publishing).
Good luck to your family!
Louise Masin Sattler,NCSP
Nationally Certified School Psychologist
I would suggest that if you or your daughter are concerned at all about her progress that you consult with her teacher. She is most qualified to give you a satisfactory answer. One thing to keep in mind is that all children learn at different rates, and in different ways. Flash cards might not be her style, and she may be reluctant to try her best. Try another method to see if that gets more traction.