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OCMomof2
OCMomof2 asks:
Q:

Should my son start Kindergarten or Jr. Kindergarten?

My son will be 5 this September.  He has never been in school or any daycare settings. He has not been exposed to any school setting at all except for his martial arts class.  My son is tall for his age (most people think he’s close to 6 years old;he’s much bigger then kids his own age), but socially shy around new kids.  He does not initiate play, but he plays very well with others (shares, takes turns, courteous and keeps his hands to himself).  He’s also in speech therapy through our school district. He’s only speech delayed and has no learning disabilities.  

Academically from what I’ve read he knows all that he should know by start of Kindergarten so I’m not concerned in that area.  He is able to feed himself, washes his hands without being asked, can get dressed and put on his shoes without assistance.  He cleans up his toys without being asked and can hold a pencil correctly and use real scissors without assistance, cutting in a straight line.   He can write his own name and recognizes it by glance or someone spelling it out.  He knows his first and last name, address, phone number and even the State he lives in.  He also knows my name, his sister’s and Dad’s names.  

Since he’s never been in school (preschool or otherwise) should I send him to a Jr. Kindergarten program first and start him in Kinder at 6 years old even though he’s capable of all I’ve written above?  Is it wise to give him some exposure first going 3 days a week in Jr.K?
In Topics: Kindergarten readiness
> 60 days ago

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Expert

ChildSpeechLanguage
Apr 15, 2010
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What the Expert Says:

Based on what you’ve written, he may very well be ready for kindergarten.  It is not a prerequisite that a child HAS to go to pre-kindergarten or junior kindergarten before attending kindergarten.  Many schools offer some type initial screening assessment for new students.  Such an assessment may give you an even better idea of his readiness.

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Additional Answers (2)

spudmommy
spudmommy writes:
Speaking as a mom with a son very close in age I'd say go for it!  Sounds like you did an awesome job teaching him what he needs for Kindergarten.  Kids are so adaptable, if they can function in  a school setting at 2 and 3 then he should have no problem.
> 60 days ago

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MrsReading
MrsReading , Child Professional, Teacher, Parent writes:
I agree with what the others have written above. If you have him go to Pre-K and then K he will not be academically challenged. This can result in his indulging in other behaviors in order to stimulate himself. Sometimes these behaviors are not desirable. On the flip side, socially he will be challenged, by virtue of his lack of experience, and begin developing that side of himself quickly. You still have some time. Is there any chance you could involve him in more activities with children his own age? This will give him a lot of opportunity to develop socially and will give you a chance to observe him before actually having to make this decision. And this is a BIG decision!
> 60 days ago

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