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to test or not to test?

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My 5 year old son just started public school kindergarten. We homeschooled last year for prek and he did very well. He began reading last fall and now LOVES to read! His writing is average (he finds that very boring). But he loves to read, tell stories, and ask tough questions.


Last week he started kindergarten in an advanced scholars program in the public school system. THe idea behind the program is that can/will individual learning based on where the kids are. This week the handout from home explained that they were learning 6 sight words and counting and writing numbers up to 10. (my son has no problem doing addition and subtraction up to 10 in his head and already can read the sight words through 2nd grade) I have a conference with the teacher for next week to discuss all of this. But here are my questions..


SHould I have my son be tested for "giftedness"? If so, where/how do I do that?


Should I keep him at school and continue to afterschool?


I could use some guidance. THanks

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You have to decide what your goals are in order to answer those questions.


Why did you choose to send him to school in the first place? For social interaction? If so, then that hasnt changed. Did you send him because the program sounded great?


I am wondering what this 'advanced scholars' program is - is it a pull-out program, or is the whole classroom part of it? Often the first few weeks of school are review and some testing for the teacher to get an idea of where everyone is. I would strongly suggest you contact the teacher and express that you thought he would be working at a higher level than this in the 'advanced scholar' program. Ask her if there is anything you can do to get him reading and math work at his level.


If you want to get him 'tested' for giftedness, that again depends on your goal. Are you hoping that, with this test in hand, the school will provide more advanced school work? If that is the case, you really need to ask the school first as to whether that would affect their placement or not. The school may offer testing or may have recommendations. Usually its just an IQ test.


the school my kids went to, gifted classes were only assigned after a teacher recommended a child to the class, and it was based on how well they completed assignments. IQ had nothing to do with it. Also, in my state, the standards for advanced learners at every age level is to do deeper learning in the same subjects, not to go faster through the topics. Until 5th grade, I believe, kids cannot be accelerated in math.


If your son is happy in school and willing to afterschool and school is important for you, than go for it. If your son is unhappy (or becomes unhappy), or you find the level of work totally unacceptable, then i would suggest homeschooling. Also note that at kindergarten level there is very little homework, but in later grades, there is often large amounts of busy-work homework, which could interfere with afterschooling.


there is no right answer. You have to find what works for your family.

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The big question is WHY to test him. What extra services will you get if he tests gifted?


As for what he's learning, it's supposed to start simple to bring up the kids who haven't had the type of exposure yet. I'd see how he does with it - there's a lot more than academics. If he enjoys school and is learning the social rules of the classroom, then I wouldn't do a thing except provide him with brain-stretching activities outside of the classroom. (This does not mean worksheets, but more projects and exploring what he's interested in).

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This is exactly the same question I have been asking myself (I posted somewhere a few weeks ago). I have decided to test when I have the money. It is not as comprehensive here or as expensive but I am broke. It is more to satisfy my own curiousity but if he need anything later it will give me ammunition. I can't afford the only gifted programme available here anyway but I know someone who was able to get an IEP. Also he is on the hyper side so a check of that would be good. He seems ok but so did I despite being bored silly.

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