Testing Out of Kindergarten

Updated on July 25, 2012
A.K. asks from Allen, TX
41 answers

Are there any moms out there that decided to have their child test to skip kindergarten and begin first grade? Our daughter is 4 and won't be entering Kindergarten until a year from this coming August. She is in a pre-k program currently and we have noticed that she appears to be ahead of most of the children that are her same age. We had her tested for kindergarten readiness 2 months before she was 4 knowing that she wouldn't go to kindergarten until she is 5.5 and it stated that she was basically ready for kinder at that point. We also had her IQ tested recently and found out that it is a 157 and her mental age at just over 4 years old is 7 years and 8 months. Her teachers have all said that she seems more mature than most of the other kids and is so well-mannered and well- behaved. She would rather practice her reading and working on math and other school-like things than to play with dolls.

Before anyone says it we aren't pushing her she just seems to enjoy learning!

Has anyone tested your child and can give me feedback on how things have worked out and any regrets or blessings that they encountered from doing so.

Thanks so much in advance!

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So What Happened?

Thanks so much for all of you that have responded. I am amazed with all the responses!! I look forward to reading even more!

I wanted to clarify a couple of things. I plan to leave her in the pre-k program that she is currently in for this coming year so she will be 5.5 when she finishes it. The teacher has her doctorate in education and specifically taught kinder and 1st grade for 30+ years so she is experienced with this age for sure. This will have her at 5.5 when we are thinking of testing her into 1st grade instead of sending her to kindergarten. I am a July birthday and my husband is August so we were always the youngest child and because she is a December birthday put into perspective she would potentially be only 4 months younger than summer birthdays in the 1st grade and thereafter. MY husband and I both graduated at 17 and then turned 18 the summer after graduation. By putting her in early she would finish High School at 17 and a half and turn 18 in her first semester of college.

Is there anyone on here that is in the DFW Metroplex and is part of a really good private school GT program? The district that we are in for public school only has the GT Kindergarten kids go to GT for an hour a week. I don't believe that this would be enough and from what I understand they get 90 minutes in 1st grade which still seems less than what I would imagine. I know some districts have GT kids grouped together with a specific teacher, but this isn't an option in our public district.

I haven't looked into Montessori much so I would love to hear more and also from those that homeschool.

Thanks again.... you mamas ROCK!

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answers from Albuquerque on

Is there any possibility of putting her in a multi-age classroom, especially a self directed one like a Montessori school? That could potentially solve the problem of keeping her challenged... because even if you put her in a public first grade, the pace may still be too slow since she's so bright. With Montessori, she could move on to new things whenever she's ready, rather than waiting for the entire class to grasp the new concept or lesson.

I have educationally advanced kids too... and they're thriving in Montessori.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Albany on

What's the big rush? When she goes away to college a year earlier, and graduates from college a year earlier, you may wish for that year back.

If you are concerned she will be unchallenged, you can stimulate her in other ways at home, to keep her from being bored.

(I only say this with regards to the 'young' kindergartener issue. I started both my boys in K when they were 4 (fall bdays) as they were ready. They did extremely well throughout their childhood educational career. Now they are 18 and 16, and I wonder, what was the point? The oldest left for college at 17, the next will do the same. I wish I'd had the benefit of hindsight now and waited a year to send them to K, even though they were clearly ready. Now I kinds wish I had that year back!)


3 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

Homeschool or private school. A child with those gifts, and at that age, would be ill-served in a public school setting, regardless of her grade.

Just my $.02...

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answers from Dallas on

My daughter also tested far ahead of her age and was an intellectually mature child at age 4. That said, when presented with the option of skipping a grade, we ultimately decided not to because looking ahead, it would result in a situation where she would be nearly 2 years younger than some of her classmates (she is a July birthday and many parents are now starting their children a year late). Although we do not believe skipping a grade would have cause acedemic problems for her, we were very concerned that at 14 she would be exposed to things more socially acceptable for a 16. We instead decided to work diligently with her teachers so she continues to be challenged in an environment that will allow her to mature socially at a rate consistent with her age. Good luck, no matter what you decide it is not an easy decision.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I know this is such a hard decision to make and you will get opinions on both sides. My daughter at age 2 was already showing signs of being highly intelligent. By age 4 she tested at a 3rd grade level. My decision was to have her take Kindergarten rather than skip grades because she was a kid at heart even though her intelligence age was 8 years old. Her teachers were always saying how well behaved and mature she was but was able to get along with everyone.

She is now in Middle School and I’ve never regretted my decision. What I did was stimulate her intellectually at home and our school had a gifted program so my daughter would be pulled out of class to work with those students. During recess she played with children her age.

I was in no hurry to have her grow up but her brain had a different plan!

Now in middle school she is taking high school classes in the gifted program. Once in high school she will have most of her credits fulfilled so by the time she is a Junior in H.S. she will not be taking as many classes as most her peers.

To me it was just never a question as to whether or not we should start her in K or jump her up to 2nd or 3rd grade. It just worked out beautifully.

Did you read that news story recently about that 9 yr old boy whom at age 4 was already doing calculus and was questioning Einstein’s theories? He blew some professor’s mind with his theories about gravity or something at age 3….. It is mind boggling! Made me realize that my daughter is obviously intelligent, but not a natural genius like this kid. It kind of puts things in perspective.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Salt Lake City on

My daughter has a September birthday and was basically in the same boat. We let her wait ... so she turned 6 a month after starting Kindergarten. She was already reading and everything. But, it's the best thing we could have done for her. She did three years in preschool, but even so, she was barely ready emotionally and socially when she went. It gave her the extra time to mature in those areas just a bit more. She's in 6th grade, doing fabulous academically (we never felt like she was slowed down because she waited the extra year), and also doing well socially. Going into 7th grade is a difficult transition, and I'm glad she had that extra year, it would have been really rough this last year.

I also taught kindergarten for several year. We often had parents wanting to test their child out of kindergarten. We almost never did, though. Yes, the kids are smart, but there are so many other ways that they are not ready for formal school yet. (I know that her teachers in preschool have noticed mature behavior, but they are also looking at a different set). Sometimes I think that the deadlines are a bit silly, and definitely arbitrary, but at the same time, most kids do better being in a class with kids their own age than being put ahead.

Look into gifted programs in your school district. They can help challenge her and make school fun while not giving her the extra stress (and even sometimes, social stigma) of being with kids who may be over a year older that she is.

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answers from Washington DC on

it's a tough call. i'm watching my nephew, who is brilliant academically and way below his peers socially. he is bored to tears with his 1st grade work but completely incapable of moving on because he's still such a little guy emotionally.
not to beat this particular drum to death, but she sounds like an ideal kid to homeschool.
:) khairete

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answers from Austin on

Our daughter was and still is physically one of the youngest in her grade.

She as always been considered gifted, she is and always has been very mature.

We could have advanced her, but we felt for this particular child, she needed to follow the steps, (she loves rules, she loves structure). She also tends to be shy with her peers.

It has worked out great. She was always challenged and graduated just fine. She has found her Nirvana in College!

Now she had classmates, that were WAY more advanced academically and they just could not be kept with enough new academic information to keep them satisfied and engaged.

Heck the elementary school itself could not keep up with them. 5 years old reading on a 6th grade level can cause problems. You have a 5 year old emotionally young child and all of the books are geared towards preteens. Some of the history and social studies can be understood, but not retained because of their lack of experiences.

Both of these children would have to attend some classes on a high school campus soon after. So 7 years old in a Sophomore math class, does not even meet his physical needs. An appropriate sized desk and chair had to be sent to that campus.

What was decided would be best, was for these children to attend private schools with 1st - 12th grade on one campus. The students had their own schedules that allowed them to flow from portions of the campus needed throughout the day. One mother stayed with her son everyday all day. The other mother hired an assistant to do this with her son.

These children were also taking college courses starting at the junior college level extremely young. 11 - Again it is what these children needed academically, but these kids were still encouraged to participate in age appropriate extra curricular activities,. Lots of therapy, for each family member. These families had other children that were progressing at the typical levels, so it caused some disruptions.

It can be done.

You will always be your childs best advocate.
Listen to the experts, consider their advice. , but follow your childs needs.

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answers from Anchorage on

Most kids that age can absorb info fast if interested. My son is also mature for his age, but I would never dream of skipping an elementary level grade because even if he is mature, he is still only 5 while the first graders are 6 and 7. Many kids that enter kindergarten at 4 have a lot of trouble fitting in and adjusting because they are still smaller and younger than the other kids. Let her be with kids her own age, and if at a later time she still seems to be advanced have her test to skip 7th or 8th grade were smaller age differences make less of an impact.

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answers from Johnstown on

All 3 of ours tested out of Kindergarten, yet we chose to send them anyway. I'm glad we did because there's alot they DIDN'T know for them to skip the grade. They were only tested on 1/2 of what they were required to know. The one part in particular they were skipped on was the kid write. They would have NEVER made it should we jumped them ahead.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

Have you considered homeschooling? I have a very active learning 2.5 year old and I currently homeschool my almost 8 year old. She is getting ready to finish 2nd grade and at the rate my 2yo is going, I think I am going to start K4 curriculum with her in August. If you don't choose to do public school, you can do whatever you want in the state of Texas. If you want to purchase 1st grade curriculum and get her started on that the state gives you total freedom to do that. If you determine she's not quite ready for that, you can always go back to Kindergarten curriculum and just pick up where you left off. There's no need to test at all. Just begin working with her on your chosen curriculum.

If homeschooling is not an option for you, I have no idea what you would need to do. I just thought I would throw that out there as I have seen much success with my kids being homeschooled. I hope this helps.

R. D.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

I too have a profoundly gifted child.
She taught herself to read, tell time on an analog clock and algebra.
She is light years ahead of her peers in academics and always has been.

Here's our issue. She is a junior and turns 16 next week. She still does not have her license and cannot get one until August, state rules.
She is shunned by some of the kids in this school, she is the new one. They found out at Christmas time she was ony 15 where some of her classmates were already 17. They say snotty things to her about being so smart and "she should know". And "What do you mean? didn't you know that". The pressure is pretty tough on her.

She got her period at 12 so that was a blessing, she was in 7th.
4th grade was torture, new district and the kids were very mean.
Her 5th and 6th grade were in a Christian school, big mistake academically, but not socially.
7th through 10th she was in another new district, (we're military) THey accepted her and she did very well.
Now in 11th she is being shunned again.

What woud I do differently?
Skip 1st and/or 5th, possiby 7th.
I would have had her do 2nd and of course 4th. I most states teach cursive in 2nd. So she missed that altogether. 4th they all do their own state's history.
Fight harder for Algebra in 6th, as it was she taught herself by reading the book then took the state test.

What I will do now.
Keep her in high school for 4 years.
Let her have the experience of homecoming, prom, school rings and football games.
We have talked about just getting the GED and going off to school, her SAT score is very high. But now she doesn't want to. She isn't ready to leave just yet. She isn't ready for a huge state institution and the idea of leaving home now, or next summer doesn't appeal to her.
She is also burnt out. We have started talking about other things, overseas travel, Americorps, Peace Corps, (I nixed that one).

When the time comes get her into some of the gifted summer camps, my duaghter loves Great Books Summer camp and is sad to not go his year. THere are lots camps at Brown, Duke, JOhn Hopkins, Stanford. THese all start in 7th grade.

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answers from Dallas on

Most of these answers are from people who have children still in elementary school. Most negative aspects of starting a child early in school do not show up until middle and high school, sometimes even college. I am a former high school teacher. I saw many students come through that were young for their grade, either started early or were just on the bubble. My niece was one of those that the state said was barely old enough and she was gifted academically. Very few of those younger students had trouble in their studies, their troubles were all social and peer pressure. Most did not handle it well. When you make a decision like this, you have to think about it 12, 15 and 18 years down the line. It is much easier to find enrichment activities and programs than to deal with teenagers with major social and/or drug issues. Also, if she ends up involved in any type of sports, she will not be able to play with those kids in her grade. Good Luck!

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answers from San Antonio on

Please let her attend K with students her own age. I taught at a private school that allowed kids to start K at 4 if they passed a test and the parents paid tuition. Those kids ended up repeating a grade when they switched to public school.

The one that stayed in the private school is so socially behind and now struggling, though he was reading at 3. His M. would not listen and the principal wanted the money and said the parents should decide. He is at risk for depression and suicide and she worries daily.

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answers from Dallas on

In Texas, they will not consider anything but your child's age when placing them in K or 1st. There is no allowance at all for starting children in K if they're not five by Sept. 1 or 1st if they're not 6 by Sept. 1.

If you want her a year ahead, you'd need to homeschool or private school until the beginning of second grade, and then they could take her previous educational history and testing into account in placing her in the appropriate grade.

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answers from Kansas City on

I don't know the laws in Texas. But here in Missouri we can homeschool our children and put them in a public school any time. I would tell them she was private schooled for Kindergarten. If they try and push you around, don't let them. You are a parent and your child's first educator. It's high time parents take back some of the decisions and responsibility since the schools are not doing a very good job of it!

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answers from Dallas on

Wow, you have a lot on answers, but I will just share my 2 cents....I considered the same thing with my daughter, and she has a 9/7 Bday so would be either the very oldest or very youngest in the class based on my decision. She was a little shy and so I decided that I preferred for her to be the oldest in the class, despite her academic preparedness. I requested the most organized teacher for each grade, and she tested straight into the GT program in K, despite the qualifications getting much tougher in that very year. I have never regretted my decision b/c now she is such a leader in the class, and a teacher's helper...wants to be a teacher someday, and an author, and a mother. :) She is in 3rd grade now...and as older grades approach, I am glad that she has her personality of confidence and will be ready to stand up to mean girls and bullies. And I am glad that she has that extra year before being in peer groups where girls are using makeup and talking boys. -- Consider middle school...do you want your sweet daughter in that place a year early? -- Also, you can augment education with reading at higher levels, extracurricular activities, music lessons, etc.

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answers from Jacksonville on

I cannot say that I had my daughter tested at that age. But she too was very advanced, LOVED learning so much that if I didn't teach her she would teach herself. We met her needs at home and in private school with other activities outside of school for her first few years. Eventually, we did pursue testing for gifted/talented in public school (starting in 3rd grade) and she qualified easily and is finishing her 2nd year in the program.

I would NOT necessarily pursue skipping grades. More for developmental reasons than anything else. It makes you swell with pride to see your younger child excelling with older students at a young age... but, there can be difficulties for HER that you might not think about now, down the road. When all her classmates are: (fill in the blank)... 'coming of age', kissing boys, dating, getting driver's licenses, going to dances, playing sports, etc... she will be a year younger (or 2 years maybe, even if she skipped only one grade... there is a wide range of ages in a given class...) than everyone else. Are you going to want her riding around with her older friends or out at the mall with them? Are you going to limit her social activity with her friends because you DON'T want her out there at that age? Will you be comfortable with her competing in physical sports with kids older/bigger than her? Will SHE? Will she suffer socially because she is younger?

I can tell you that just because she is more mature than her AGE mates, does not automatically translate into being of equal maturity with her mental peers. And, if she is extremely gifted, she may have social issues to deal with anyway-regardless of whom her classmates are. It can be a very awkward place for gifted kids...because sometimes they don't really "fit" with other kids in ANY grade!

I would not push the skipping ahead idea.. but I WOULD do all I could to educate myself on Gifted kids. Encourage her and provide her every enrichment opportunity that you can (that SHE is interested in pursuing) and keep her engaged outside of school with other activities (karate, gymnastics, summer camps that focus on science, going to museums, art classes with paints/ceramics, whatever interests her!).

Here are some links you might find helpful/interesting:


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answers from Dallas on

Wrong thing to do. She need to go to K to be socialized and follow the schedule cooperating within a group with a leader (teacher). If she needs to be stimulated, start a 2nd language or start piano. Think about High school. All her friends will drive a year before she does. You want her to be in college at age 17 with all of those 19 year old boys?

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answers from Dallas on

I don't think it is a good idea. Listen to Margie as this is what I was going to point out. It will be all fine through elementary and maybe middle school, maybe not. But, high school will be an issue. She may be very smart and mature but emotional maturity is a whole different story. She won't be emotionally prepared for how hard high school is for girls socially. My daughter has an August b day and start kinder a few weeks after the turned 5. SHe is in 9th grade now. It is very difficult to be the youngest. I can't image if she were a whole year younger. I am not sure your high school but would you want your 13 year old daughter going to school with 18 and 19 year old boys?? It is hard enough at 14 or 15 to handle that. With school finance the way it is they are stopping many plans for 9th grade centers so that would put your daughter with much older kids and she could be taken advantage of or pulled in by the wrong group if she doesn't have what it takes to be assertive and that might be really hard at 13. So, again try to think big picture, high school and college life, not elementary school.

Instead, put her in every enrichment program you can think of at school and outside of school. Have her tested for the gifted and talented program (if it doesn't get cut), put her in music lessons, dance, art, etc.

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answers from San Francisco on

This sounds *exactly* like my daughter, she's 5, born in Dec, and starting K in the fall. My solve was to find a school nearby that has great enrichment programs (G.A.T.E) and a K-1 combo class. For our situation, this was the perfect comprimise...I am very hesitant to skip her to first grade, despite some opinions to the contrary, and I love the idea of having her in a class with older children, where she can meld into that age group where comfortable, without actually skipping a grade. Frankly, even after 2 yrs of preschool, I still have concerns about her emotional and social maturity. She actually had to 'try out' to be placed in this class, and after her 'audition' the teacher and principal fully supported my opinions in this case. Good luck to you!



answers from Chicago on

My child's birthday is in Nov. and he too is very bright. When the teacher teaches him something he learns it quickly and is looking for more. He was reading at 2 years old and actually comprehending and explaining what he read at 4. He is highly gifted in literacy. His teacher gives him more challenging assignments. I personally am going to send him to Kindergarten in Aug. I sent him to piano lessons when he was 4 and he is playing with both hands this year. What I did was challenged him in another area, besides school work. It keeps his interest and he is beginning to perform for events. I don't feel that my son was mature enough to be placed in a class ahead, he will just be ahead and hopefully his new teacher will give him greater responsibilities in the classroom that will nurture his leadership skills.


answers from Detroit on

Have you compared curriculum at the Public Schools versus the Private? My daughter is in a Montessori Kindergarten class and is right on track where she needs to be. But, she is above and beyond what kids her age in our Publics schools (and they are very highly rated schools) are doing from the friends we have who have kids in the public schools. At 5 she works on 4 place addition & is working on "carry over." She has worked division and subtraction and multiplication too. Her reading and writing skills are GREAT and so on. I do not think my kid is a wizard at all, but the environment she is in provides a higher level of learning at a young age. And the expectations are a lot higher, so she has to work to achieve them.

Some of the public schools in our area have a TAG program for Talented and Gifted kids. So, they pull these kids together and allow them to continue learning at their accelerated rate.

My only fear would be is having her skip a grade and then being behind somewhere down the line because she missed something "big." She sounds REALLY smart, so she may do just fine, I would just do some research with your school options before I make a decision.



answers from Honolulu on

Essentially she would be skipping a grade or two.
So, this is about whether, you want her to skip grades.
Teachers say she seems... mature and well behaved compared to most kids.

I would, think down the road.
Say when she is 12 and older.
Do you want her, to be with older kids per grade level and be at those "teen" phases already and her classmates having sexual maturity and bodily changes, before she reaches that stage?

I have a friend whose daughter, is very advanced and skipped grades. She is and has always been, a very mature girl and so so so well behaved. But, once she hit Middle School.... she really had a lot of problems: the other kids left her out because she is 'younger', they were talking about boys and getting their periods and having mood issues and all of that stuff. Which, her Daughter, was not going through yet and could not relate to yet. But sure, she was so smart academically, and mature and well behaved.
But- Emotionally... is where many kids will meet up against difficulty.
The emotional aspects of a child, has NOTHING to do with how smart they are or mature. It is a different aspect. Entirely. Emotional development... is separate from academics.

Looking back, my friend wishes she let her daughter... be with her own age and grade. Instead. Her daughter, practically all her life... was skipped ahead in grade. And she was just treated older than she was, even if she was not older. And, her daughter, was having lots of emotional type problems and classmate problems, once she hit Middle School. At that age, not all girls/kids are nice.

Or, you can Home School your child.

Or simply, ask the school if they have a Gifted & talented program.
And develop the whole child. Not just academics.



answers from Dallas on

In the state of Texas Kindergarten is not required and extensive testing would have to be done to move her to 1st grade early. Contact your school district.



answers from Houston on

My daughter missed the state cut-off for Kinder by 3 weeks but she was certainly ready to go. I home schooled her that year and we took the test to skip kinder for then next year (you have to be 6 to enter 1st grade and she was still 5). The test was 100 questions--half reading, half math. You have to make an A on both portions. My daughter made an A in reading but missed it by 2 questions in math. It seemed ridiculous for her to learn the same things over again just because of a "B" so I home schooled her for 1st grade. She was tested into 2nd grade for this school year and she has done awesome---straight A's. The teacher even says it would have been a mistake to place her in a lower grade because she would have been extremely bored.

True, she was just 6 when she started 2nd grade and some kids were already 8, but it has not been a problem. Fortunately, she is really tall, so no one would even guess she is the youngest in the class.

I was told repeatedly by family members and even people on this site to just put her in Kinder. So far, I think I made the right call.



answers from Dallas on

I was a kid who tested out of kindergarten but my parents decided to leave me with kids "my own age." I went to a GT magnet school but I always felt more at home around older children. Being kept in a less challenging environment seemed to lessen my drive to ahieve since it was easy for me to be "the best in the class." My parents finally realized the mistake and I graduated a year early from high school but I missed out on a lot of opportunities that I would have had graduating with a class I'd been with all along. Traditional age grouping for schools is arbitrary and you are better to find your daughter's best fit emotionally, socially, and academically without worrying about "actual" age. We found that the Montessori environment fits the needs of our daughter perfectly.

Good luck!



answers from New York on

It is not all about the academics. There are social skills that need to be
learned, emotional growth that is also needed. Usually in the end when
they graduate early it backfires because they are just too young. I would
not let her skip kindergarteb,



answers from Dallas on

I also recommend the gifted and talented route versus skipping a grade. Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD has the LEAP program and the ACE program.

The LEAP is unique because it caters to profoundly gifted children. These children work at two standard deviations above grade level.


I also read and recommend the book, "Nutureshock."



answers from Dallas on

I haven't read all the answers but I was exactly your daughter, down to the December birthday. Seems like I didn't skip kindergarten but went in at 4 (can't really remember) but I graduated HS at 17 and didn't turn 18 until the December of my freshman year. This did not hinder me one bit socially or academically (went on to an ivy league law school). This was in NY though, so I can't speak to the school issue. I went to public school and was in honors classes in hs. Seems like they wanted to put me in in "enrichment" in grade school but my mom didn't like the idea of treating the "gifted" kids differently. That or I wasn't smart enough for enrichment and my mom didn't want me to know. ;) Who knows.

I was asking questions about this issue re my 3 year old son and my husband said that for boys it's very different because they want to be able to have a license and drive their dates around in hs and they need to be physically bigger than the other boys for sports and if they go in early they won't hit puberty til later, etc.

I know that my brother who was very smart was not challenged in grade and hs and he took it the wrong way and started haning with the wrong crowd. Once he got to college and was challenged he totally straightened out and how he's a phd engineer. My point is that I do believe that being challenged is important and if you think she's ready and if she seems socially mature enough, I say go for it. I liked being the youngest. . hth!



answers from Tyler on

Hey -
I scanned the other answers and I don't think anyone answered in regards to this information: My son went to a challenging PreK program and intellectually, I would have thought he was ready for 1st grade. I even interviewed the Kindergarten at the public school and discovered that it would not challenge him at all, so I put him in private school for Kindergarten. We were blessed with a wonderful Kindergarten teacher that challenged him at a higher level. But, my whole point really is that 1st grade was a LOT more challenging than Kindergarten. My son did perfectly fine, but I don't think he would have been ready for it if he had not had Kindergarten. As well as he did in PreK, he didn't really have any homework and he did not have to discipline himself to get work done. That started in Kindergarten with homework a couple of nights a week. But, in 1st grade, he had a lot of homework EVERY night. It was very intense. So, I'm glad he had Kindergarten behind him already.

Just FYI, I'm in the same boat you are with my daughter. She is only 3 now, with a December birthday. And, I'm chomping at the bit because I know she'll be ready for Kindergarten by the fall, but of course she won't be allowed to attend.

Good luck!



answers from Chicago on

Something to consider is that if she skips kindergarten she will always be the youngest in her class...may not seem like a big deal now....but may be a bigger deal in Middle and High School.


answers from Omaha on

This is a little different, but same ball park in the future. My sister skipped the first grade. She had a really high IQ. Ended up leaving home at 16 to go Harvard 2000 miles away. She turned 17 four months later in December. She was not ready to go. Didn't find that out until after the fact. I mean she did great and graduated suma cum laude and is now a doctor but there was an emotional growth that was missed. My parents regret having her skip the first grade.

Like your daughter she was very mature when she was younger. She did well in school. Leaving early for college was emotionally hard on her. She still needed her mom and dad. It was too soon. Once she left she never moved back home. Ended up going to CA and is there now. Between when she went to college and now there were/are little emotional things that my parent's both agree she left the nest too soon based on her skipping the first grade.

My daughter is above her kindergarten class and labeled as gifted. However, I am going to leave her right were she is. Do not want to repeat the history of my sister.



answers from Dallas on

I had heard about this school in Dallas for academically-abled children.


answers from Fort Collins on

My nephew skipped kindergarten too and he is now 2 years ahead of his class. He was doing great academically, but he is running into issues with things like sex ed classes at 10 years old. He ultimately decided that he wanted to attend a local self paced, private school and his parents agreed to pull him out.

Kindergarten is one of the few public school programs that is truly self paced. The program is set up for kids to be at many different levels and still progress. I would suggest that you let her attend Kindergarten unless she is truly against it and see how it goes. They do assessments at the start of the year and so the school will know that she is far ahead anyway. I would reccomend that you develop a great relationship with her teacher as soon as you can and work together to monitor your daughter's progress throughout the year.

We were hesitant about sending my son to Kindergarten too, but we decided to enroll him and stay in constant contact with his teacher. The teacher has been wonderful and we have since worked out a plan where he only attends class part of the week and works at home on the other days. It works great for us and my son is happy and learning. I am not sure how flexible your school is, but I do know that if you want what is beyond the basics you have to be willing to pursue it because the school system is not designed to be a custom fit.

If you find that she really is beyond their program you can also look into a more self paced school like Desiderataschool.org or maybe even public school online if you find that she is too advanced for the public school system and you have the time to commit to her education.



answers from Dallas on

Here is a book to help with lots of the aspects of a Gifted child. The biggest thing I took from it - and I'm only 1/2 way through - is that if a child is 45 points below the IQ mean of 100 - they are considered 'slow learners' with special learning needs. Why then if one is 45 points ABOVE the average (or 57!) would your child not have special learning needs as well?

It’s called “A Parent’s Guide to Gifted Children” by James T. Webb, Ph.D., Janet L. Gore, M.Ed., Edward R. Amend, Psy.D, and Arlene R. DeVries, M.S.E. Published by Great Potential Press, Inc., http://www.giftedbooks.com

Also this website, while it can be overwhelming, also helps a lot! http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/



answers from Fort Myers on

I'm one of those that were moved ahead. My Birthday fell in October. My Parents were given the option to test to see if I could be moved to 1st grade. I tested out of Kindergarten and my parents moved me to 1st grade. They also tested me for IQ and the first test was 182, I was retested and came to 165. Mentally I did well, I was in all the advanced classes throughout school. For the most part I was unchallenged, which led to difficulties in College because I never developed good study habits. On the other hand, Physically I was behind. Driving age in NJ was 17, I didn't get my drivers license till after my Junior summer. practically everyone else in school had theirs in the early part of the Junior year, 2 months into my Senior year. I believe that this led to me hanging with my peer age group which was the class below. In addition, I was very active in sports and the additional year of physical maturity would have helped tremendously. I didn't finish growing till college and the size and dexterity would have helped significantly. I did well, but I believe I could have done Real Well had I had another year. So in closing, your daughter may have the mental maturity to compete intellectually, but as I have experienced, physically and socially it was a real struggle.

Hope this helps



answers from Los Angeles on

I think every one has good thoughts (haven't read them all) but I'll share just a couple of my own. I don't think there's a right answer but a couple considerations I would lend as a kinder teacher:
- Don't assume there won't be at least another child in her kinder class as advanced that she might be able to bond with. Also, the teacher will be expecting this and have some ways to differentiate.
- That being said, I understand that you want her challenged appropriately and, honestly, academically she probably won't be in a kinder class. She would probably do fine in 1st.
- If she's that smart... won't she sortof run into this problem again in a couple years even is she skips a grade- I mean, if school work comes this easily to her? And where are we rushing to?
- I think beyond all the obvious, one thing my going-into-1st-grade students have is school confidence. THey know each other and have friends, they know that campus, they know generally what's expected of them and the overall routine. I think my preschooler is really smart, but he's very cautious- and small. If I threw him into 1st grade with 30 "big" kids- strangers- and 1 teacher.... well, I don't think he'd even enter the room. Just that confidence level alone might be worth it, but it really depends on your child's personality.
- Lastly, if you do decide to skip kinder think about what to tell her- make sure it's appropriate for her to think and to tell others. (perhaps you can tell her her preschool class was "like kindergarten" or something so she doesn't assume these other kids needed something that she didn't)


answers from Sacramento on

Our youngest is a year ahead in school. She is almost 6, and is finishing 1st grade. She's at the top of her class, loves going to school, has a lot of friends, and her teacher was actually surprised when she realized our daughter is much younger than the other kids. Just like some kids need to be held back a year, some kids are ready to move on sooner than others.

Same as your daughter, our daughter went straight from a 3-year old preschool program (where she taught herself to read, taught herself addition and subtraction, etc) to a full-day Kindergarten program. I had thought at the time that I'd just have her repeat Kindergarten, but at the end of last year it was clear that she was totally ready to go to first grade. So then I thought, well, I'll just have her repeat first grade. Now I see that she clearly doesn't need to repeat first grade, so... on we go to second grade!

For us it has been fine. She's not having any trouble adjusting socially (nor will she ever, I don't think). I was always the youngest in my class (late October birthday) and never had any issues either. I think as a mom you have to do what's right for your child. Just because most kids would not be able to handle being ahead a year in school doesn't mean that your child can't handle it. If she's ready, she's ready. Put her in first grade and see what happens. If it doesn't work out, put her back in Kindergarten. No big deal! :)



answers from Dallas on

I would look into a montessori program. It was great for my daughter and while she was in her 1/2/3 class (they group grades together) she had a friend who was at least a grade above everyone else but because of the way the program works she was able to work ahead of the class with out being "outside" of the class...if that makes any sense....then because they group 4/5 together they were able to move her from 3rd to 5th grade and she was still with her friends and it was less of a big change. My daughter has done well and is now in 6th grade and is in all Pre-AP classes.


answers from Dallas on

I suggest the book Nurtureshock. I also suggest letting her pursue her hobby of learning at her own pace and letting her follow the traditonal school path. You can put all sorts of learning opportunities in front of her. Encourage her brilliance at home. Whether or not she can do algebra at 4 is really not the issue. Socialization is what she is going to get out of school right now.
Let me put it in pragmatic terms. If she waits and is miles ahead of her classmates, than that's going to be an advantage down the line when it comes to competing for scholarships, etc. Skipping a grade will remove that competitive advantage and could actually put her at a disadvantage if teachers and friends realize she is younger.

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