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Teaching 4/5 Yr Old To Read!!


HippieMom
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My 4 (almost 5 year old) is having "problems" starting to read. I say problems like that because I assumed she was really smart and the local school system says she should be reading and writing before kindergarten.  :glare:  :confused1:

She is really smart. She can spell her name (8 letters) and her sisters (6 letters) and a few 3 letter words all on her own! She knows letters, but usually writes in all caps. She knows most of the sounds letters make and is working on the rest but she gets so stubborn when I ask her to sound out letters!

Any tips? I would really appreciate it!  :thumbup: Thanks in advance, guys! God bless!

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Is she in PreK at that school, or is that something they just say to parents of incoming K-ers? Because if the latter, I'd just ignore them. Not all of the kids entering K will be reading and writing - they just want you to make their job easier, so I wouldn't sweat it. If she's in their PreK and they're harassing you over it, I'd give them a written request for evaluations for reading and writing disabilities. Not that I believe she's got a disability at all, but I suspect that that will shut them up quite nicely (evals cost them money). 

 

ETA: where I'm from, they discouraged parents from teaching their K-ers to read or write. They started that stuff in 1st grade (and I'm not that old - I started 1st grade in 1990).

 

ETA2: actually, if she's in their PreK, start by just telling them that you guess you should put in a request for evals, so that they can back off before you start the official process. 

Edited by luuknam
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Agree with all the above. Buy the Leap Frog Letter Factory DVD and let her watch that a few weeks. (Or months). Take a breath. She's FOUR. Once she's happy saying the sounds pick an easy Phonics program (there are a million- Progressive Phonics is free) mentioned on here, and see if she will work with you. If it's not clicking put back the book and wait another month or two and try again.

 

Ignore the school district. If your other posts are any indication, they're idiots. :) Do you have a copy of The Well Trained Mind yet? If not it might help you get a mental plan of what to expect that's realistic, rather than these completely out of line expectations you're hearing from your district. I'm sorry they're stressing you out so. Just come here with your questions and delete their number. :)

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Also there is no way I would ask a four year old to write. Buy her some tracing maze books from Kumon if you will, but writing comes later for a lot of kids.

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I agree with the previous posters.  K'ers should not be expected to know how to read before K.  Yes, there will be some kids in Kindergarten that can read, but many will not.  At that age, kids are going to be all over the place in their reading ability.  My mother has been a Kindergarten teacher for many years, and the beginning of the year is difficult with assessing everyone.  Some know their letters, others do not, and some are already reading.   If your daughter is already reading 3 letter words and she is 4, she sounds like she is doing just fine :)  As previous poster said, Progressive Phonics is a good program and is free. If that is not a good fit, there are MANY phonics programs out there, and you can ask and scour the boards for advice on that. Good luck!

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My 4 (almost 5 year old) is having "problems" starting to read. I say problems like that because I assumed she was really smart and the local school system says she should be reading and writing before kindergarten.  :glare:  :confused1:

She is really smart. She can spell her name (8 letters) and her sisters (6 letters) and a few 3 letter words all on her own! She knows letters, but usually writes in all caps. She knows most of the sounds letters make and is working on the rest but she gets so stubborn when I ask her to sound out letters!

Any tips? I would really appreciate it!  :thumbup: Thanks in advance, guys! God bless!

 

She knows all the sounds letters make...honey that *is* beginning to read. She's already doing what you want her to do.

 

If she doesn't want to sound out letters on command ("she gets so stubborn") then let it go.

 

And early reading has nothing to do, in either direction, with how intelligent she is and will end up being.

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I agree with the previous posters. K'ers should not be expected to know how to read before K. Yes, there will be some kids in Kindergarten that can read, but many will not. At that age, kids are going to be all over the place in their reading ability. My mother has been a Kindergarten teacher for many years, and the beginning of the year is difficult with assessing everyone. Some know their letters, others do not, and some are already reading. If your daughter is already reading 3 letter words and she is 4, she sounds like she is doing just fine :) As previous poster said, Progressive Phonics is a good program and is free. If that is not a good fit, there are MANY phonics programs out there, and you can ask and scour the boards for advice on that. Good luck!

This. The vast majority of kids do not read before starting K. I couldn't find the article I was looking for but it's something like 5% of kids read before K. Maybe a little different.

 

If you're teachers are pushing it I would just ignore them. Some kids stay in the knowing their letter sounds, but not blending them into words stage for a while. Blending (putting sounds into words) is a developmental skill and can't be forced. I would do something gentle if you wanted t do anything at all.

 

We did use progressive phonics occasionally and my kids LOVE Leap Frog Letter Factory.

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Is she in PreK at that school, or is that something they just say to parents of incoming K-ers? Because if the latter, I'd just ignore them. Not all of the kids entering K will be reading and writing - they just want you to make their job easier, so I wouldn't sweat it. If she's in their PreK and they're harassing you over it, I'd give them a written request for evaluations for reading and writing disabilities. Not that I believe she's got a disability at all, but I suspect that that will shut them up quite nicely (evals cost them money). 

 

ETA: where I'm from, they discouraged parents from teaching their K-ers to read or write. They started that stuff in 1st grade (and I'm not that old - I started 1st grade in 1990).

 

ETA2: actually, if she's in their PreK, start by just telling them that you guess you should put in a request for evals, so that they can back off before you start the official process. 

She is not in Pre-K. I took the approach of homeschooling her for Pre-K. They gave me a list that said that for her entering K. 

I know she doesn't have a disability but I understand why you would recommend that! lol I'd say they wouldn't want to spend the money.

I am so surprised by all they want incoming K kids to know! And NO NAPS?! Plus ALL DAY LONG CLASS?! Wow! When I was in kindergarten, we had nap time and we got out at noon or one everyday. I asked them when they stopped doing nap time and they said "Oh, they got rid of that over 20 years ago!" Not likely... I'm 24 (25 in a few months) and I had naptime... So, that's a lie. Why can't kindergartners be eased into school like in our day? lol

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Agree with all the above. Buy the Leap Frog Letter Factory DVD and let her watch that a few weeks. (Or months). Take a breath. She's FOUR. Once she's happy saying the sounds pick an easy Phonics program (there are a million- Progressive Phonics is free) mentioned on here, and see if she will work with you. If it's not clicking put back the book and wait another month or two and try again.

 

Ignore the school district. If your other posts are any indication, they're idiots. :) Do you have a copy of The Well Trained Mind yet? If not it might help you get a mental plan of what to expect that's realistic, rather than these completely out of line expectations you're hearing from your district. I'm sorry they're stressing you out so. Just come here with your questions and delete their number. :)

She does watch that! They have some LeapFrog on Netflix and some on YouTube! She loves those! 

I do not have a copy of that but I will look for it! Thank you! :) And thank you for all the advice! I stress about everything! lol I'm so happy I found this website so I can get REAL info instead of talking to the school district! lol 

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I agree with the previous posters.  K'ers should not be expected to know how to read before K.  Yes, there will be some kids in Kindergarten that can read, but many will not.  At that age, kids are going to be all over the place in their reading ability.  My mother has been a Kindergarten teacher for many years, and the beginning of the year is difficult with assessing everyone.  Some know their letters, others do not, and some are already reading.   If your daughter is already reading 3 letter words and she is 4, she sounds like she is doing just fine :)  As previous poster said, Progressive Phonics is a good program and is free. If that is not a good fit, there are MANY phonics programs out there, and you can ask and scour the boards for advice on that. Good luck!

Thank you! :) I honestly told people how smart she was and the school system made me feel an inch tall! :( Everyone told me she was so smart but the school told me she is far behind! I was shocked but mad as well! Just proved to me the school system won't help kids learn at their own pace and forces them to be on the same level and wayyyyy ahead of where they should be! That's too stressful on the kids!

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She does watch that! They have some LeapFrog on Netflix and some on YouTube! She loves those! 

I do not have a copy of that but I will look for it! Thank you! :) And thank you for all the advice! I stress about everything! lol I'm so happy I found this website so I can get REAL info instead of talking to the school district! lol 

 

The Well Trained Mind (TWTM) fourth edition came out last year, and has the most recent curricula suggestions, but if you don't want to buy it yet and your library has an earlier edition it's still definitely worth reading- no matter which edition. If you want to be overwhelmed with book recommendations on homeschooling besides that one, just let us know. We're always happy to oblige. ;) And welcome to the boards and the wonderful world of homeschooling!! :) 

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She knows all the sounds letters make...honey that *is* beginning to read. She's already doing what you want her to do.

 

If she doesn't want to sound out letters on command ("she gets so stubborn") then let it go.

 

And early reading has nothing to do, in either direction, with how intelligent she is and will end up being.

She just won't sound out words when I know she knows them! lol I'm not trying to push her but I'm scared if she ever DOES go to public school, they will say she is behind and I know she isn't! :(

The list I got from the school says she HAS to know BEFORE she comes to school... that's why I've been trying so hard with her lately. I told my husband we ought to just decide to homeschool and stop pushing her to learn this in a few months before school.

And thank you! :) I'm just afraid them TELLING her she didn't do good enough will discourage her. :( They even told her is wasn't good that she drew herself and forgot the arms and didn't have enough facial features... after she realized it, they wouldn't even let her add the arms. They just said she didn't grasp drawing. I thought art was about CREATIVITY?! How is my child punished for "forgetting" something?! She was so upset!

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She just won't sound out words when I know she knows them! lol I'm not trying to push her but I'm scared if she ever DOES go to public school, they will say she is behind and I know she isn't! :(

The list I got from the school says she HAS to know BEFORE she comes to school... that's why I've been trying so hard with her lately. I told my husband we ought to just decide to homeschool and stop pushing her to learn this in a few months before school.

And thank you! :) I'm just afraid them TELLING her she didn't do good enough will discourage her. :( They even told her is wasn't good that she drew herself and forgot the arms and didn't have enough facial features... after she realized it, they wouldn't even let her add the arms. They just said she didn't grasp drawing. I thought art was about CREATIVITY?! How is my child punished for "forgetting" something?! She was so upset!

Well this is a Homeschool board, so... I wouldn't put up with that garbage.

 

More helpfully, perhaps: "I've never seen the point in meeting trouble halfway." ~Marilla, Anne of Green Gables. Let it be a problem if it actually becomes a problem. In the meantime, don't borrow their whack values before you're even in the system.

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The Well Trained Mind (TWTM) fourth edition came out last year, and has the most recent curricula suggestions, but if you don't want to buy it yet and your library has an earlier edition it's still definitely worth reading- no matter which edition. If you want to be overwhelmed with book recommendations on homeschooling besides that one, just let us know. We're always happy to oblige. ;) And welcome to the boards and the wonderful world of homeschooling!! :)

I'll have to look for that at our local library! Thank you! :)

I would love to know any and all books about homeschool that you all think would help!! :) <3

And thank you! I'm glad to be here! Everyone seems so kind and it gives me peace of mind to know I'm not alone and I have someone on my side to help me! <3

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Well this is a Homeschool board, so... I wouldn't put up with that garbage.

 

More helpfully, perhaps: "I've never seen the point in meeting trouble halfway." ~Marilla, Anne of Green Gables. Let it be a problem if it actually becomes a problem. In the meantime, don't borrow their whack values before you're even in the system.

Thank you. And I understand this is a homeschooling board... that's why I joined it. I just had second thoughts when everyone was telling me I couldn't do it and I was "risking her future without a diploma", which is why I listened to the school board and registered in case I needed a backup. Obviously, I am here to try to ensure that does NOT happen and receive support from those that can help me.

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She just won't sound out words when I know she knows them! lol I'm not trying to push her but I'm scared if she ever DOES go to public school, they will say she is behind and I know she isn't! :(

The list I got from the school says she HAS to know BEFORE she comes to school... that's why I've been trying so hard with her lately. I told my husband we ought to just decide to homeschool and stop pushing her to learn this in a few months before school.

And thank you! :) I'm just afraid them TELLING her she didn't do good enough will discourage her. :( They even told her is wasn't good that she drew herself and forgot the arms and didn't have enough facial features... after she realized it, they wouldn't even let her add the arms. They just said she didn't grasp drawing. I thought art was about CREATIVITY?! How is my child punished for "forgetting" something?! She was so upset!

She isn't behind though. Even knowing her letter sounds makes her somewhat ahead.

 

I think it would help you if you googled what is developmentally appropriate for a preschooler. You can find examples of what kind of people preschoolers should draw and what they should know as far as reading. Readiness.

 

She is not behind. At all. The school has unreastic and developmentally innapropirate expectations for preschoolers.

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Thank you. And I understand this is a homeschooling board... that's why I joined it. I just had second thoughts when everyone was telling me I couldn't do it and I was "risking her future without a diploma", which is why I listened to the school board and registered in case I needed a backup. Obviously, I am here to try to ensure that does NOT happen and receive support from those that can help me.

Oh no I didn't mean to give any kind of bad impression​! I meant, I Homeschool so my advice is to Homeschool 😆

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As my first book suggestion, in light of your idiot public school administration officials, might I mention Better Late Than Early by Raymond Moore. :)

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My son has known his letter sounds since he was 3, and is just now starting to understand blending at 6 (end of kinder). It will come when it comes. Don't let the school stress you out.

 

Sent from my HTCD160LVW using Tapatalk

 

 

Yes, this! Kids are ready to read at varying ages. Don't make it stressful. If it is frustrating her right now, back off for a while. Just read to her lots and lots. Ignore the idiot school people and let your 4 yo be a preschooler. Get a good, basic phonics book lie Phonics Pathways or AlphaPhonics and work through it as she is ready. 

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Thank you. And I understand this is a homeschooling board... that's why I joined it. I just had second thoughts when everyone was telling me I couldn't do it and I was "risking her future without a diploma", which is why I listened to the school board and registered in case I needed a backup. Obviously, I am here to try to ensure that does NOT happen and receive support from those that can help me.

 

 

If you want to homeschool, I don't see why you couldn't. You wouldn't be risking your child's future "without a diploma". If you click on the high school of college sections of this forum, there are threads with college acceptances, and plenty of people mention their kids not just being accepted but getting scholarships, some even free rides. You can write your kid's high school homeschool diploma yourself when she gets to that point, and that's perfectly legal. 

 

Now, homeschooling obviously takes time and effort and all that, so it's not for everyone, but ime lots of people will say you can't, just because they don't know any homeschoolers and they think it's hard or impossible or w/e. That doesn't mean they're right. So, if you want to homeschool, I'd suggest you homeschool K, and just take it a year at a time. 

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When my oldest went to private school K 7 years ago, he was the only kid that could read already. The rest had no clue (and many of them had been to preK... mine had not). When he started 1st grade at the same school, 3 kids in the class still were not reading. One of those is dyslexic. I don't know about the other two. Anyway, I remember a LOT of FB posts from classmates' moms saying, "Johnny just read a book to me!!!!" during the second semester of K. One of those kids was in the higher reading group in 1st grade. He wasn't reading before K or even during the 1st semester of K.

 

Also, my oldest resisted anything resembling school at age 4. If I was trying to teach him, he'd not even try. But when I let him do the learning on his own and I just answered his questions, he learned very quickly. So he started reading at 4.5 (picked up Go, Dog, Go! and read half of it as my jaw dropped to the floor - we'd never read the book before, and he'd never even sounded out CVC words before). He needed to learn things on his own terms. I've found that 4 year olds are OFTEN like that. :) So he started reading when I completely backed off. I let him play starfall.com, and I answered his questions and I read picture books to him all the time. He picked it up on his own. The K teacher ended up giving him a 2nd grade reader to take home, since he passed all the K and 1st sight word tests in the first month of school.

 

And your child can be very smart and still not learn to read until 5 or 6 or later! :) It's ok. Are you planning to homeschool or send her to public school? I'm still a bit confused on that point. If you plan to homeschool, I wouldn't worry about it. Just go at her pace. That pace may go faster or slower at different times. That's ok. It's the benefit of homeschooling. If you plan to send her to school, I agree with a PP that you should try talking to the actual K teacher. I'd be shocked if kids were entering her class really reading. Maybe they have some sight words memorized from preschool, but then I feel sorry for them attending academic preschools instead of play based. :P Memorizing a few sight words isn't really reading. My 2 year old recognizes the words "oh" and "ham" (weird fixation on ham), as well as my name (which she'll point to and say "Mama"). She isn't reading though. She's just memorized some shapes.

 

 

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OP I also meant to ask where you live. In certain affluent and highly intellectual areas, I see a greater push for earlier academic achievement. I have friends in NYC and D.C. who discuss how stressed they feel with the preschool testing and enrollment process. Preschoolers to go test prep centers to learn to read and learn school skills! It is crazy. But those areas may have an abnormally high percentage of kids reading in K.

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My 4 (almost 5 year old) is having "problems" starting to read. I say problems like that because I assumed she was really smart and the local school system says she should be reading and writing before kindergarten.  :glare:  :confused1:

 

The only time I've seen such a thing said by a school with a straight face, was in areas where Kindergarten is really high pressure and your kids have to pass exams just to be considered for the wait list. These schools are usually in super affluent areas of NYC, LA, etc...

 

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You asked about easing into school - that's what preschool is now. Many kids have been going to all day child care centers and transition to all day preschools. Others go to half day preschools as their ease-in.

 

I definitely suggest clicking on the college board (subset of high school board here) and checking out the Acceptance thread. If you go all the way through high school with homeschooling (which is a long way off for you, so you don't have to commit to something like that yet), you will give your kid a diploma! In almost every state, it is just as valid as your school district's. (NY is an exception right now.) Who knows what it will be like in 8-10 years??

 

I have never had a kid of mine reading fluently at 4 or 5. I have one that could at 6. My oldest couldn't read well until 7 years old. She's not the superstar that many of the other home schooled kids on this board are, but her ACT reading and English scores were pretty high ("college ready") at just-turned-13.

 

My next kid wasn't reading fluently until almost 10, but she reads and comprehends at a higher level than her older sister at the same age and writes children's books when she's not drawing and painting.

 

At those younger ages, skills vary widely and as a previous poster said, How early they read is not a predictor of intelligence. (It can be, but it doesn't have to be.)

 

Good luck! We refer to the collective wisdom of the people on these boards and the board itself as The Hive. Welcome to the Hive!

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She isn't behind though. Even knowing her letter sounds makes her somewhat ahead.

 

I think it would help you if you googled what is developmentally appropriate for a preschooler. You can find examples of what kind of people preschoolers should draw and what they should know as far as reading. Readiness.

 

She is not behind. At all. The school has unreastic and developmentally innapropirate expectations for preschoolers.

I know she isn't! But the school is trying to CONVINCE me that she is! It's awful! Now I'm starting to question (even though I know I shouldn't). 

I go to church with someone who told me she teaches "reading" and I asked her why she teaches a subject and not a grade. She said in that school, kindergartens are taken out in groups of 4 or 5 to go do various subjects in other classrooms (pretty much changing classes, which is crazy, in my opinion). They find out "where they are at" in order to figure out what group to put them in. She told me with my daughter needing more help, she would probably be sent with the group that comes in an extra 30 mins because they are "behind" (which I'm assuming is the special education class?). She assured me that the schools understand all kids are different, though, and that some kids come in never having seen a letter and the school has to accept them! I asked her why the ridiculous "they HAVE to know this BEFORE kindergarten" letter was given out then... she said she doesn't know. Wow. Just wow. A TEACHER doesn't even know. But we were told she wouldn't be allowed in without mastering it. This school system is crazy.

Did I mention on the list it says if your kids can't tie shoes to not let them wear them? I asked about it and they said they don't have time to help kids that have shoes come untied so until they MASTER it and require NO HELP EVER with them, they aren't allowed to wear them. How nice. :/ 

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Oh no I didn't mean to give any kind of bad impression​! I meant, I Homeschool so my advice is to Homeschool 😆

Oh, good!  :laugh:  :laugh: I thought you meant like "why is this girl here?" type of thing! lol  :lol: I was just reassuring everyone I know where I am and my intentions in case you (or anyone else) was wondering why I was here! lol :lol:  :lol:  It's all good.  :grouphug:  I think we should, too! This system is severely screwed up!!

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Also, I'm confused as to who the "they" is. Did you have her evaluated by the school system for some reason? The actual K teachers may be less pushy of high academic standards

Um... I've probably said "they" a lot! lol Most of the time, I mean the school. The school board woman I talked to (which I could have said "they" about on accident) convinced us to register her for kindergarten last week. THEY are the ones that I keep mentioning. THEY made her go to 6 different kindergarten classrooms they had set up for testing and test her for multiple things. They were the kindergarten teachers that tested her! That's why I'm so shocked! lol Hope I cleared it all up! Sorry for the confusion!  :grouphug:

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If you want to homeschool, I don't see why you couldn't. You wouldn't be risking your child's future "without a diploma". If you click on the high school of college sections of this forum, there are threads with college acceptances, and plenty of people mention their kids not just being accepted but getting scholarships, some even free rides. You can write your kid's high school homeschool diploma yourself when she gets to that point, and that's perfectly legal. 

 

Now, homeschooling obviously takes time and effort and all that, so it's not for everyone, but ime lots of people will say you can't, just because they don't know any homeschoolers and they think it's hard or impossible or w/e. That doesn't mean they're right. So, if you want to homeschool, I'd suggest you homeschool K, and just take it a year at a time. 

I know!  :D  But the school system sure did give me a scare about it! I was researching and asking people for DAYS if it was right!  :001_rolleyes:  

I know it takes time and effort, and I'm ready for it!  ;) I've been planning loose lessons since my oldest was 2!  :001_smile: Just fun and learning shapes, colors, and etc in the beginning. My youngest is 2 and by her second birthday knew all the colors, shapes, and etc. She can even recognize her name if there are cups with their names on them! People have just told me I couldn't for various reasons. 1. My family (besides my mom and dad) told me "I'm too dumb" and "It's just for crazy people" (they have put me down and told me I was fat and stupid since I was born, even when I was a size 1-2... they are just terrible people). They also tell my oldest daughter when they see her how great school is and that "Mommy isn't a teacher", even though she tells them that I am.  :D They also try the "bus is fun" and "other kids will be there" approach to turn her against homeschooling... we don't see them for this reason. 2. Some friends have said she "won't be socialized" and all the normal things people misunderstand about homeschooling. They have also told me I should be working and I'm being selfish making them stay at home so I can. :rolleyes: Some people are insane... and 3. Some have told me it's just not worth it when the public school "does better" and it will "be impossible to put them back in if something happens".  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:

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She is not in Pre-K. I took the approach of homeschooling her for Pre-K. They gave me a list that said that for her entering K.

I know she doesn't have a disability but I understand why you would recommend that! lol I'd say they wouldn't want to spend the money.

I am so surprised by all they want incoming K kids to know! And NO NAPS?! Plus ALL DAY LONG CLASS?! Wow! When I was in kindergarten, we had nap time and we got out at noon or one everyday. I asked them when they stopped doing nap time and they said "Oh, they got rid of that over 20 years ago!" Not likely... I'm 24 (25 in a few months) and I had naptime... So, that's a lie. Why can't kindergartners be eased into school like in our day? lol

Maybe you should homeschool kindergarten too! ;). This is why I started homeschooling.

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She said in that school, kindergartens are taken out in groups of 4 or 5 to go do various subjects in other classrooms (pretty much changing classes, which is crazy, in my opinion). They find out "where they are at" in order to figure out what group to put them in. She told me with my daughter needing more help, she would probably be sent with the group that comes in an extra 30 mins because they are "behind" (which I'm assuming is the special education class?). 

 

 

I would not assume it's the special education class. It sounds like she'd be in a regular classroom, and all the kids would go to various subject teachers, and she would just happen to be in the group that would see the reading teacher 30 extra minutes (missing some other subject for 30 min of course), and when she catches on with reading, she would be moved up to another group that would not get the extra 30 min of reading. It's actually not that unlike how my oldest's last elementary school (which is actually an okay school as far as schools go) did things (though I don't think they were as nutty as the school you're describing - but when he started there in the middle of K after we moved, the teacher did test him some and announced they were already writing in sentences, which was quite the exaggeration (some kids were writing sentences, most could copy a couple of very short sentence with some help)). I'm pretty sure if they wanted to put her in an actual special education class, or give her actual special education services, they'd need to go through the IEP process. 

 

Anyhow, I would strongly recommend you find a local group of homeschoolers. Around here there are some email lists, some Facebook groups, there are homeschool classes at the Y, the science museum, and a nature center, some co-ops (but most of those are religious), etc. The science classes at the science museum are for K and older, and the Y's are for 3+yo. The Y would even let you visit once I think to try it out (not 100% sure), but anyway... try to find local homeschoolers somewhere somehow to have some irl people to tell you that yes your local school is crazy and you can do it - with your family and friends being so against it it would be very good to know real life people who are doing it (people on the internet are good, but just not the same).

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When my oldest went to private school K 7 years ago, he was the only kid that could read already. The rest had no clue (and many of them had been to preK... mine had not). When he started 1st grade at the same school, 3 kids in the class still were not reading. One of those is dyslexic. I don't know about the other two. Anyway, I remember a LOT of FB posts from classmates' moms saying, "Johnny just read a book to me!!!!" during the second semester of K. One of those kids was in the higher reading group in 1st grade. He wasn't reading before K or even during the 1st semester of K.

 

Also, my oldest resisted anything resembling school at age 4. If I was trying to teach him, he'd not even try. But when I let him do the learning on his own and I just answered his questions, he learned very quickly. So he started reading at 4.5 (picked up Go, Dog, Go! and read half of it as my jaw dropped to the floor - we'd never read the book before, and he'd never even sounded out CVC words before). He needed to learn things on his own terms. I've found that 4 year olds are OFTEN like that. :) So he started reading when I completely backed off. I let him play starfall.com, and I answered his questions and I read picture books to him all the time. He picked it up on his own. The K teacher ended up giving him a 2nd grade reader to take home, since he passed all the K and 1st sight word tests in the first month of school.

 

And your child can be very smart and still not learn to read until 5 or 6 or later! :) It's ok. Are you planning to homeschool or send her to public school? I'm still a bit confused on that point. If you plan to homeschool, I wouldn't worry about it. Just go at her pace. That pace may go faster or slower at different times. That's ok. It's the benefit of homeschooling. If you plan to send her to school, I agree with a PP that you should try talking to the actual K teacher. I'd be shocked if kids were entering her class really reading. Maybe they have some sight words memorized from preschool, but then I feel sorry for them attending academic preschools instead of play based. :p Memorizing a few sight words isn't really reading. My 2 year old recognizes the words "oh" and "ham" (weird fixation on ham), as well as my name (which she'll point to and say "Mama"). She isn't reading though. She's just memorized some shapes.

My four year old seems to be the same lately! lol She doesn't like anything that we call "school" but I can get her to do ABCMouse and her Leappad games.  :thumbup:

I do plan on homeschooling her but the woman I talked with at the school board advised me to register her "just in case" and I fell for it! lol I must not have explained too well because everyone is asking me that!  :blushing:  :blushing:  I want to homeschool but I needed advice and reassurance about it. School system got to me!  :thumbdown:  :rofl:

They do require a lot of them BEFORE they attend school. It's crazy! And no naps and playtime in kindergarten?! I think that's not right to these kids! 

Edited by HippieMom
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OP I also meant to ask where you live. In certain affluent and highly intellectual areas, I see a greater push for earlier academic achievement. I have friends in NYC and D.C. who discuss how stressed they feel with the preschool testing and enrollment process. Preschoolers to go test prep centers to learn to read and learn school skills! It is crazy. But those areas may have an abnormally high percentage of kids reading in K.

Small town in East Tennessee.... aka NOT and intellectual area.  :lol:  :lol:  :lol:  Most people here aren't that intelligent. Just to give you an idea, in high school, all four years, our history class was coloring maps of the US and the world. We didn't learn anything. Although, there were rules... No coloring outside the lines, all oceans and such have to be blue (even the Red and Black sea), TN has to be orange, no states or countries touching one another can be the same color, and no state or country bordering an ocean can be blue.  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes: Also, in geography, to achieve an A, we had to rub our teachers back for the whole period, keep her entertained with conversation, or simply not spit dip on her floor or in her trash can. THAT is the education I received here. THAT was my high school. And that is just part of it! I do NOT want my kids having to teach THEMSELVES history and geography in their 20's, like myself, just because they are sick of being ignorant in those subjects.  :mad: Honestly, it's crazy here. I just can't do that to my kids and I am shocked what they are requiring in kindergarten when what I just described is high school!  :mad:  :mad:

But in all honesty, no, I do not think this is an intellectual area by a long shot.

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The only time I've seen such a thing said by a school with a straight face, was in areas where Kindergarten is really high pressure and your kids have to pass exams just to be considered for the wait list. These schools are usually in super affluent areas of NYC, LA, etc...

 

DEFINITELY not any of those areas. lol Small town in TN, I'm afraid.  

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You asked about easing into school - that's what preschool is now. Many kids have been going to all day child care centers and transition to all day preschools. Others go to half day preschools as their ease-in.

 

I definitely suggest clicking on the college board (subset of high school board here) and checking out the Acceptance thread. If you go all the way through high school with homeschooling (which is a long way off for you, so you don't have to commit to something like that yet), you will give your kid a diploma! In almost every state, it is just as valid as your school district's. (NY is an exception right now.) Who knows what it will be like in 8-10 years??

 

I have never had a kid of mine reading fluently at 4 or 5. I have one that could at 6. My oldest couldn't read well until 7 years old. She's not the superstar that many of the other home schooled kids on this board are, but her ACT reading and English scores were pretty high ("college ready") at just-turned-13.

 

My next kid wasn't reading fluently until almost 10, but she reads and comprehends at a higher level than her older sister at the same age and writes children's books when she's not drawing and painting.

 

At those younger ages, skills vary widely and as a previous poster said, How early they read is not a predictor of intelligence. (It can be, but it doesn't have to be.)

 

Good luck! We refer to the collective wisdom of the people on these boards and the board itself as The Hive. Welcome to the Hive!

Thank you for the advice and the welcome! :) 

I do understand I would give the diploma, but that was my concern... the school system told me she couldn't do anything with it. Although, under an umbrella school you get a high school diploma and it doesn't sound too bad so I'm considering it! :)

I will keep working with her and take it slower. :) I feel a lot more relaxed about it now... thank you for sharing the story of your children and how old they were! Glad to see others say its not important for her to read now or within this year!

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A really good resource that might set your mind and ease and give you and your child a great start in Reading, Writing, and Math would be The Three R's by Ruth Beechick.  It can be had for about $10 on Amazon.  This series/book was recommended to me by several veteran homeschoolers when we started a few years ago.  I just re-read it last week to refresh my mind, though I'm introducing my second student to reading and feel fairly confident in the process.  

 

It's a quick read and always sets my mind at ease.  It's not very long page-wise.  The steps are numbered and it covers up to about grade 3 so there's some longevity with its use.  The series reminds me to be diligent and steady at the same time as revealing that this is not "rocket science"!  It is totally possible for an adult with good intent, a good work ethic, and a willingness to learn, to teach their child to read!

 

It's a very common-sense, no-nonsense, tried-and-true, "old-school" approach to reading that works and is so very much less stressful than many other resources I've read on the subject.  It's gentle and written in a humble, confident tone.

 

Whether you decide to homeschool or not, this book is a classic and could help any parent support their child in reading (and the other 2 main primary subjects).  Highly worth the 2 hours (or fewer?) it would take to read through the series.  

 

(I'm using "series" and "book" interchangeably with this resource because mine is a set of 3 mini-books (Reading, Writing, and Math) while the one I found on Amazon is bound into 1 book.)

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I would not assume it's the special education class. It sounds like she'd be in a regular classroom, and all the kids would go to various subject teachers, and she would just happen to be in the group that would see the reading teacher 30 extra minutes (missing some other subject for 30 min of course), and when she catches on with reading, she would be moved up to another group that would not get the extra 30 min of reading. It's actually not that unlike how my oldest's last elementary school (which is actually an okay school as far as schools go) did things (though I don't think they were as nutty as the school you're describing - but when he started there in the middle of K after we moved, the teacher did test him some and announced they were already writing in sentences, which was quite the exaggeration (some kids were writing sentences, most could copy a couple of very short sentence with some help)). I'm pretty sure if they wanted to put her in an actual special education class, or give her actual special education services, they'd need to go through the IEP process. 

 

Anyhow, I would strongly recommend you find a local group of homeschoolers. Around here there are some email lists, some Facebook groups, there are homeschool classes at the Y, the science museum, and a nature center, some co-ops (but most of those are religious), etc. The science classes at the science museum are for K and older, and the Y's are for 3+yo. The Y would even let you visit once I think to try it out (not 100% sure), but anyway... try to find local homeschoolers somewhere somehow to have some irl people to tell you that yes your local school is crazy and you can do it - with your family and friends being so against it it would be very good to know real life people who are doing it (people on the internet are good, but just not the same).

I just assumed it was because of the way she exaggerated how they were "behind" and how she would be needed extra time in there... It was kinda the way she said it, I suppose. lol

I have joined some groups but any homeschool groups around here at 1 hour or more north or south of me. :( It's awful. 

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P.S. When I was in what sounded like your shoes, trying to make decisions about homeschooing/private/public/etc., I too stressed about the long-term and things like if my children would be able to obtain diplomas/college entrance at the end of the road.  

 

My husband had finally had enough of all the ruminating and issued a decree that we would take things one (1!) year at a time, not 18.  It was truly overwhelming to try to make a decision that reached so far into the future and I did not have the grace to do so.  

 

We continue to take this one year at a time--as many do--and, while I do not lose sight of our long-term goals for our children, I can now easily see that there are many, many steps between Kindergarten and college.  There is freedom to try things out at your daughter's age and see where the road takes you.  

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I just assumed it was because of the way she exaggerated how they were "behind" and how she would be needed extra time in there... It was kinda the way she said it, I suppose. lol

I have joined some groups but any homeschool groups around here at 1 hour or more north or south of me. :( It's awful. 

 

 

I would still try to reach out to them and see if any of those people live closer in your direction and would be willing to meet up once. Some people might be driving e.g. 30 minutes north/south for those groups, so might be only 30 min from you. I wouldn't necessarily sign up for a weekly activity an hour from home (then and again, knowing myself, there's a decent chance I would if I were in your shoes, not necessarily long term, but maybe for one semester, but I don't know what your financial and transportation situations are etc). 

 

So, since you're saying you're going to homeschool, you should unenroll her from school. I don't know anything about TN homeschool laws, so I don't know if you need to file a letter of intent or anything, but if you don't unenroll her I'd imagine the school will consider her to be truant come fall. If things happen last minute, you can always enroll her again in August or whenever - they're a public school, they have to take her (unless K is not required, I guess - but they can still consider her to be truant even if K is not required - I had a crazy principal in TX tell me that they'd changed the student handbook the summer before my 3yo started attending PreK (after he'd met the kid when we toured the place), and his hair needed to be above the collar, and if we didn't cut his hair, he'd give the autistic 3yo an in-school suspension, and that if this happened a number of times the kid would be considered truant - I said something about PreK not even being required, so how can a 3yo be truant, and he said that if we enrolled the kid then it was required - it was batshit crazy, but there you go... incidentally, the PreK teacher was great, but the principal...).

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A really good resource that might set your mind and ease and give you and your child a great start in Reading, Writing, and Math would be The Three R's by Ruth Beechick.  It can be had for about $10 on Amazon.  This series/book was recommended to me by several veteran homeschoolers when we started a few years ago.  I just re-read it last week to refresh my mind, though I'm introducing my second student to reading and feel fairly confident in the process.  

 

It's a quick read and always sets my mind at ease.  It's not very long page-wise.  The steps are numbered and it covers up to about grade 3 so there's some longevity with its use.  The series reminds me to be diligent and steady at the same time as revealing that this is not "rocket science"!  It is totally possible for an adult with good intent, a good work ethic, and a willingness to learn, to teach their child to read!

 

It's a very common-sense, no-nonsense, tried-and-true, "old-school" approach to reading that works and is so very much less stressful than many other resources I've read on the subject.  It's gentle and written in a humble, confident tone.

 

Whether you decide to homeschool or not, this book is a classic and could help any parent support their child in reading (and the other 2 main primary subjects).  Highly worth the 2 hours (or fewer?) it would take to read through the series.  

 

(I'm using "series" and "book" interchangeably with this resource because mine is a set of 3 mini-books (Reading, Writing, and Math) while the one I found on Amazon is bound into 1 book.)

Thank you so much! :) Sounds awesome! I will look for it! I wonder if my local public library would have this book?

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P.S. When I was in what sounded like your shoes, trying to make decisions about homeschooing/private/public/etc., I too stressed about the long-term and things like if my children would be able to obtain diplomas/college entrance at the end of the road.  

 

My husband had finally had enough of all the ruminating and issued a decree that we would take things one (1!) year at a time, not 18.  It was truly overwhelming to try to make a decision that reached so far into the future and I did not have the grace to do so.  

 

We continue to take this one year at a time--as many do--and, while I do not lose sight of our long-term goals for our children, I can now easily see that there are many, many steps between Kindergarten and college.  There is freedom to try things out at your daughter's age and see where the road takes you.  

That's very good advice! Thank you! :) The reason we worry and think about 12 years instead of 1 is the horror stories we have heard. :( We have heard of people trying to enter their child into public school after years of homeschooling and the school testing them for placement only to put them in years and years BEHIND the grade they are in. We get scared that we can NEVER send her to public school because of this. :( I'm sure we're just overly worried and I will try to think one year at a time like you said. :) Thank you again! <3 

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My 4 (almost 5 year old) is having "problems" starting to read. I say problems like that because I assumed she was really smart and the local school system says she should be reading and writing before kindergarten.  :glare:  :confused1:

She is really smart. She can spell her name (8 letters) and her sisters (6 letters) and a few 3 letter words all on her own! She knows letters, but usually writes in all caps. She knows most of the sounds letters make and is working on the rest but she gets so stubborn when I ask her to sound out letters!

Any tips? I would really appreciate it!  :thumbup: Thanks in advance, guys! God bless!

 

My daughter is really smart but she was not reading before she started K.  (My son was, so this was a surprise. She's just on a different track.) NOW, at the end of K, she is able to read some early Dr. Seuss (One Fish, Two Fish is her favorite) but struggles with other books.  (We found the Dick and Jane anthologies from Barnes & Noble REALLY useful. Unlike a lot of popular "level 1" books, they really have vocabulary that can be sounded out at the beginning level, plus that builds from one story to the next.)

 

Thankfully, in her school, they really do not worry about reading being "behind" until near the end of 1st grade.  The main goal in K and 1st is learning to read. They also cover math, some science, etc. But all in the context of beginning readers. And even in 2nd, they are firming up reading. 3rd grade is the beginning of "reading to learn". 

Edited by vonfirmath
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Did I mention on the list it says if your kids can't tie shoes to not let them wear them? I asked about it and they said they don't have time to help kids that have shoes come untied so until they MASTER it and require NO HELP EVER with them, they aren't allowed to wear them. How nice. :/ 

 

My daughter's Kindergarten teacher has sent home a class-wide request that if your child cannot tie their own shoes, please have them wear velcro shoes. There is not enough time for the teacher to be tying everyone's shoes.  So that I understand. You can buy velcro shoes as cheaply as tie around here.

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We live in the Western New York area and my youngest currently attends our local UPK (Universal Pre Kindergarten).  By the END of PreK (so, entering Kindergarten) they want them to know how to write the letters and their names (although as of January most of the names were still illegible on a card that came home that all the children had signed), to be able to recognize their letters (upper and lower), to know the sounds the letters make, number concepts to 10 (counting, simple adding), and a list of other age appropriate things..rhyming, shapes, colors, etc..  Perhaps things differ drastically around the country but here there certainly is no expectation of reading entering Kindergarten.  My niece is currently in Kindergarten and my sister said that by the middle of the year they like to them to be reading simple books...but not at the beginningn.

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