Friday, January 24, 2014

Making the Right Decision

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Cram.com

Some of you know my husband and I struggled with the decision to hold our youngest back in Kindergarten last year. He was deemed ready to progress, but is a child who falls on the birthday bubble (turning 5 the day after Kindergarten started last year). He was not confident in his skills, and that was probably in no small part because he was comparing his work to the other children in the class, who were an entire year older than him.


We made the decision for him to repeat, and this year has been phenomenal!! What a joy to know without a doubt that you've done the right thing for your child. This is especially true in this case, because it was such a hard decision to struggle with at the time!

We spent the summer prepping, doing school work in the form of games and such, making it fun, so he wouldn't get rusty. A portion of my day (for earning money and doing school work) is spent on the computer. I try to do those things very early in the morning in the summer, but on the days I did have to work online, my son would be beside me doing learning enhancement with online flashcards, YouTube tutorials, and/or learning games that were fun from sites like Nick Jr.


His biggest issue was social...the confidence thing I spoke of above. I suspected that would not be a challenge this year, and I was right. He's been through Kindergarten, he knows what to expect, and he's doing so so so so sooooooo good this year.  His teacher is constantly lauding his work and progress, the principal noted in an e-mail how wonderful of an example he is this year, a natural leader in the class, and his papers (classwork) always come back so beautifully done.

Keeping him in this grade one more year was the absolute best decision we could have made for him (which I suspected and wrote briefly about at the beginning of the school year). I thought I would let you know how it's been working out, since so many of you were kind enough to weigh in on the decision when I was struggling with it initially. Hurrah for happy endings!

70 comments:

  1. good for you that you did the right thing for your child!

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    1. You'd think it would be easy to do the right thing, but it was a hard decision! Seems silly now that we were so worried about it. :)

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  2. way go mom you did good by your son and i bet he is the star of his classroom this tear. I feel any parent that puts their child's well being before that of what is socially acceptable totally rock

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  3. always listen to your heart, I think you did the right thing

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  4. I'm glad you did what you knew needed doing. It makes a world of difference doesn't it. You took the struggle away from him and he thrived. Excellent.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

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  5. This is so awesome! I'm sure that there were some critics around you but you are the one that knows what will be best for your child. It's all about the confidence of the child too. If he can stick with it when he's young, he can accomplish anything!

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  6. I know we've talked about this before, but my little guy (August 16th birthday) went on to first grade this year and is struggling a little. He gets extra help, but I am kind of regretting not holding him back, too.

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  7. You made an excellent decision! My birthday fell 5 days before the cut off date to begin Kindergarten. I remember my mom sitting me down and talking to me about going to kindergarten and that i had a choice to go that year or wait a year. We talked about the pros and cons. and she actually left the choice up to me. I chose to stay out an extra year and went into Kindergarten when I was 6. And that was the best choice my mom and I made together. School was so much easier and I loved it. He will definitely be singing your praises when he gets older and realized the hard decision you had to make; but did the best thing for him. I thank my mom each and every day that she allowed me that option and helped me make an informed choice.

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  8. I totally agree, we decided my second son had to do His grade six before secondary school though he passed the entrance. We needed Him to mature some more and do better in his academics.
    And boy, are we glad we did! He is doing so much better!

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  9. I agree with other commenters above. I think you did the right decision for him. When kids are ready, you can tell as they will sow you. I did not send my kids to pre-school, I taught them at home and my kids appreciated it sop much as they are so ready when they enter kinldergarten in school.

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  10. Yay, so glad everything worked out so well! You knew what was the right thing to do for your son! It's great that you're so involved with his education and don't we have such wonderful resources online now too?

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  11. so happy things worked out great for yall... i know i was a tough decision, but it needed to be made and yall made it!!!

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  12. I'm so glad that worked out for you! One of my younger brothers was a late starter - but when he started, he caught up very quickly!

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  13. That is awesome that you made the right decision. Ryan's birthday is in July and so he went into 1st grade as planned. Sometimes I wonder if we would have been better starting him later, but it is what it is. He is plugging along.

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  14. we did the same with my oldest...he is in his last year of elementary school now and thriving...so for us while it was a hard decision, it was a good one...

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  15. Sometimes the decision is hard, but at that young age it is easier for the child. It was a good decision..

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    1. I have 4 boys all with fall birthdays (sept-nov). It's been a challenge having them wait for that whole extra year, but I've been really pleased with how school is going for my oldest and my now pre-k!

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  16. That is awesome that he is doing so well, knew the right thing and you did it.

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  17. Sometimes it is very good to hold a child back... if not he may have struggled in school for the rest of his school years. Good for you.... I know it is so hard to know the right thing to do...

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  18. I cannot tell you how great it is to hear that your decision was the right one! I am going to tell this story to a friend of mine, who is agonizing over a similar decision for her son. She wishes she had a crystal ball, b/c she feels that she is deciding his "fate" somehow. Of course, as we all know, there is no such thing as a crystal ball!

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  19. This is so wonderful! It feels good when a hard parenting decision pays off in the end, doesn't it?

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  20. Rosey, I am so happy to hear this! I remember how hard this decision was for you guys and I'm thrilled to see that it has turned out to be such a good thing for your boy. So happy things are working out well for him!

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  21. I wish I had kept Kyle back a year even though he has an early birthday. It is hard for boys! I am so glad you made the right decision :) He will have such an advantage from now on.

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  22. Making the decision to holding your child back is definitely a hard one. My best friend started kindergarten early and she ended up being one of the smarted kids in the class. It all depends on their maturity level in my opinion :)

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  23. My kindergarten teacher wanted to hold me back, not because of my learning but because of my social interaction. My mom wouldn't allow it and I am so happy because staying back a year wouldn't have helped me. I know it's not the same situation but just saying. It's up to each mom to make the correct decisions for our children ,and only we know whats best.

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  24. I am so glad that your decision worked out for him! It's so hard to know if you're doing the right thing until you see the positive results.

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  25. That is awesome that your parental instincts were right on. We went to an open house last night for my four year old for kindergarten. He turns 5 next month so he'll have a good 5 months of being five under his belt before school starts. I'm so nervous for him though, want him to make friends and do well in school. The school we signed him up for only has 44 spots and the list is 10 pages long, so its a long shot, but we have to try!

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  26. I would have done the same thing. Your little guy is sooo adorable!

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  27. You are lucky they let you do that, here you have to make them go on the parents have NO say. That is one of the many reasons we are home schooling our youngest, he was going to be 3 when he started pre-k and I was not okay with it.

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  28. We had the opposite problem. My daughter is born in January and is ready to go to Kindergarten, but was not allowed because she had not yet turned four. Next year she is going to be bored, because she already knows most of her stuff!

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  29. Im so glad your Son is doing so well!
    He is adorable!

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  30. I'm so glad for both of you! I'm sure the positive response from his teacher, and his ability to be a leader/mentor for the other children has really helped boost his confidence.

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  31. Wonderful, I'm so glad things worked out well for you...and that he's doing so well!

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  32. I am so glad you held him back. First grade will be easy next school year, too.

    http://joycelansky.blogspot.com

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  33. First, did you know blogger and gmail were out this afternoon? Well, I came to your blog, read this post, and then tried to comment, and the comment wouldn't post. I said, "I'll come back later." In the meantime, you came to my blog and left a comment! Great minds think alike!! :) So...what I wanted to say was it is such great news that your decision was right! I'm so glad, because I remember reading about your fears that it wouldn't be this summer. I have a friend who is going through an equally hard decision for her son, and she keeps saying that she wishes she had a crystal ball! Of course, no one has a crystal ball, which makes it so hard.

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    1. I didn't know it was out until today when I saw people saying it. I'm glad it's back up and running though. :)

      Crystal Balls would take the fun out of things (not that that would keep me from peeking in every now and again). :)

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  34. I'm glad that you shared this because I was also thinking about this. It's such a hard decision to make.

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  35. That's great he's doing well! Sounds like a really tough decision to make, but you made the right one.

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  36. That is great that it worked out even better for him with waiting

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  37. I know a lot of people who struggle with that decision. Personally I would rather see a child at the top of he class a year later than in the middle a year a head.

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  38. I was a birthday bubble child and my mom went ahead and sent me on to the next grade. I really wish I had been held back one year to have time to mature when I was in kindergarten.

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  39. Making the decision to hold your child back is such a huge decision. At that age it really isn't a big deal for the kids but it definitely is for the parents. I know we really struggled with it when our youngest son was struggling. He is autistic and it was the best thing for him. We have never regretted it.

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  40. Sometimes kids just aren't ready for things at the "right age"!
    ~ Kimberly
    Our Family World

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  41. As a teacher and a dad, this makes me so happy!

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  42. Only a caring parent would know the right thing to do... extra kudos to you and your husband, so happy for your son.. I was in a similar situation with Valentina starting out in French immersion, she struggled, yet I kept her there, finally we decided to put her in English and she excelled... I am glad I finally made that decision. Have an awesome weekend Rosie :)

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  43. I'm Glad It All Worked Out For You & Your Son He's A Cutie!! XO

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  44. Great decision. Us parents always know what is right for our child :)

    Michelle F.

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  45. Glad to see that your son is doing better in school. Sometimes it is hard to make the "right" decision when it comes to your children. Thank you for sharing this post.

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  46. I'm so glad you followed your gut on this issue.
    And now you get to see him blossom as he should and can. Way to go mama!

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  47. Well you have to always do what is best for your child. I'm happy that it turned out so well for him, you obviously know your child best!

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  48. Contratulations! That is fantastic news! Sometimes making your child repeat a year is the best thing you can do for him or her. And the best advantage is when they are still little, so for the classmates it's easier to accept them.

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  49. This would be such a hard decision! Its so great that it worked out for you guys though! He'll just thrive right along with the rest now!

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  50. So glad it turned out so good! I faced this decision a long time ago and it would tough.

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  51. I had to keep my son back in first grade too. It was a tough decision but it ended up being good for him

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  52. That makes me so happy that it's been working out so well. He REALLY was on the age bubble, wasn't he? He's going to excel all through school now.

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  53. I had the same fears a couple of weeks ago when I registered my daughter to a kindergarten at only 2 years and 5 months. Up to now it turns out she's doing great even though all kids are at least 1 year older than her. Keeping the fingers crossed.

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  54. That's so great! I wondered about how he is doing.

    Mica's on that age bubble, my husband was to, and so was I. They didn't wait to send my husband, or me. We both struggled. Mica on the other hand waited. He's at the top of his class. I just hope he doesn't get bored with school. His teacher this year doesn't challenge him enough. We make him do more things at home.

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  55. I think as a parent you know what is best for your child even if on paper it might be telling you something different. It is best when you can realize this in the younger grades, it makes the transition with another group of students easier on the child.

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  56. I am so glad and happy to know that you totally felt worth it after all that struggle and decision making - comparing with others is not so good - it made your child feel better and you as a parent felt proud too!

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  57. Mariah fell on that bubble. While she excels in work, she has never been confident in her social skills. I'm so happy little man is doing well in both areas thanks to the good decision you made!

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  58. I had the same issue as a child, I believe. I was very shy, very scared to speak or do any socializing whatsoever. I think being held back is a good way to help your kid.. it helped me.

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  59. I was faced with the same issue when my daughter was this age She wanted to go to school in the worst way though. So, I let her. Well, up until the 5th grade Sierra had a huge social problem. Getting along with the other children was something we wrestled with on a daily basis. I struggled with the decision to leave her back a grade. She was smart as a whip though, and academically she could keep up. So, I decided not to hold her back & instead enroll her in a guidance counselor support group. Slowly but surely it worked and by the time she went to middle school Sierra's social problems were a thing of the past. She still has little hang ups here & there, but not as nearly as bad as it was.

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  60. Mommy knows best! You did what you think is right girl. God bless you and your Family.

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  61. I wish more moms were like you. As a kindergarten teacher myself, telling a parent that their child would benefit from a repeat is sometimes one of the hardest things, because we know that they would fight us on it. A repeat is not made lightly, we even ask for other teachers opinions, we go through every facet of the child's schooling and only then do we make a decision. Once it is made, we are confident that the repeat would be in the child's best interest. Some parents do not see it that way and it's sad. It's the child who pays the price for this more than anyone else.

    I love hearing that your son is blossoming. This is what school should be like for children, happy and successful.

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  62. This is a tough decision but for your son's good. My daughter is a few days after the cutoff so she will have to wait one more year.

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  63. I think you made the decision that was in the best interest of your son which is all that matters. I hope things continue to work out for you.

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  64. You did what you felt was right for your child and that is something to be proud of. Glad your son is doing well.

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  65. That's really good that that decision worked out so well for your son. I suspect that even though the decision was difficult, that deep down your intuition told you it was the right thing to do.

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  66. Glad he's doing well! Those kinds of decisions are always so hard to make.

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  67. I'm glad it's working out so well for him this year. When my oldest son was younger I held him back in Kindergarten. He's 15 yoa now and doing quite well. I'm glad he got that extra year of Kindergarten.

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