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    #46084 - 04/29/09 01:39 PM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: Floridama]
    incogneato Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/25/07
    Posts: 2231
    Loc: up in my head.......
    I'm kind of agreeing with Floridama. I know you've read a lot of horror stories about K, but remember, those children whose K experiences have gone swimmingly, tend not to post.....or post as often as the parents who have horror stories to share.

    Myself included, sometimes the horror stories are posted in an attempt to seek help/ideas, ect. My eldest DD did okay in K, back then, I didn't even know there were forums like this and didn't really have a need for one! wink

    However, when DD6 went to K, we really had some problems.

    I do think in terms of skipping, the school will zero in on the K skill/s that are not mastered. Perhaps you can work with him this summer to get some of those shored up.

    I have had some success by asking the school: "What is x child expected to know/be able to do by the end of K, and is x child already able to do these things?

    You could end up with a great K teacher, that makes all the difference. Good luck with whatever you decide.

    smile

    Neato

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    #46086 - 04/29/09 01:42 PM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: Floridama]
    Katelyn'sM om Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/22/08
    Posts: 1085
    Loc: Austin, TX
    Maybe I am use to hearing a lot of the stories around here but the wait until fall is a very common approach. They (districts in our area) usually test during the first month and make their recommendations at that point. Also do to the reading and ABCs part they might not be willing to jump him a grade but rather offer a pull out option. But back to the wait til the fall equation ... a lot can happen in regards to reading and ABCs by the fall.

    I agree with inky ... first step is to test him. It will give you a starting point and facts to back you up b/c schools are quick to make assumptions without it.

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    #46087 - 04/29/09 02:14 PM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: PurpleHeather]
    kimck Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/20/07
    Posts: 1134
    You might want to take a deeper look into the kindergarten program itself and the population of kids coming into it. Our kindergarten class had many readers and kids that had attended very academic preschools. It was designed to be open ended for kids at all levels. We actually had a pretty darn good K experience with a HG kid, considering there were 24 kids in the class and 14 were boys (we had a male teacher, so I think that weighting was intentional).

    On the other hand, 1st was horrible. It was almost less academic and hands on. And it was certainly not as open ended for kids in many places. It may have served us well to do kindergarten and then push for a skip (we are now homeschooling).

    I also know our district will not consider a K skip or early entry unless the child is reading very well. My son was just like this pre-K. Would not read - zero interest. Was doing 2-3rd grade math conceptually, lots of science knowldege. Very intense personality, but we didn't know we were dealing with a GT kid. We actually thought he was behind because he would not read. I think he tends to be more visual spatial (although, he was also a very active preschooler too. Sitting down with academics was not his thing). Jumped about 5 grade levels reading in a matter of months. So watch for that as well.

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    #46090 - 04/29/09 03:05 PM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: kimck]
    PurpleHeather Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 04/10/09
    Posts: 27
    Ok, with so much talk of skipping, I had to reread my post to make sure I had not made a typo. I do NOT want DS to skip K as I do not believe his language skills would support it. I just took the schools mention of skips as a sign that they would be flexible. I am concerned about DS only having about 8 skills in the K curriculum left to master. I do want the school to do something in the area of math & science. Still, we did not get that far with the principle before hearing the wait till fall line. This is a guy who thinks DS could have started K last year. To me it just make sense to plan ahead.

    I keep coming back to getting DS tested. I have had plenty of people tell me that is what we need to do next & it seems like a logical next step. But then today I talked to a Ed. Psychologist who told me not to bother testing unless I know that the school will do something with it. That was very demoralizing.

    I know that I worry a lot & I try not to but it is just part of my personality. Honestly, I hope I am overreacting. I hope that he has a wonderful teacher & that things go very smoothly. I guess I just don't expect it. frown



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    #46093 - 04/29/09 03:22 PM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: PurpleHeather]
    Floridama Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/09
    Posts: 389
    Loc: Florida
    You should look into your school and see what they have for gifted students. Some schools have intensive programs and others only have a one hour/week pull out system. As for the Psy's comment..You gain nothing but knowledge by having your child tested. And if you do through the school it will cost U nothing.
    However, I would recommend at least waiting until later in the year when your son is comfortable in school and confidant in himself and his abilities.
    As for K, my HG daughter loved it! K teachers are usually a rare and wonderful breed. You may indeed be supsrised!

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    #46097 - 04/29/09 03:38 PM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: PurpleHeather]
    Mia Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/18/07
    Posts: 533
    Loc: Chicago, Illinois
    Originally Posted By: PurpleHeather
    I do NOT want DS to skip K as I do not believe his language skills would support it. I just took the schools mention of skips as a sign that they would be flexible. I am concerned about DS only having about 8 skills in the K curriculum left to master. I do want the school to do something in the area of math & science.


    I guess that begs the question, what do you hope the school does for math and science? In-class acceleration/differentiation? Going to a higher class for math and science? How do you envision the "best" your school could do for your ds?

    I think being specific is important. And with my experience with the local public school, I wish I'd started *earlier* and started asking specifics earlier so that I knew what I wanted and what sort of attitude I'd be seeing. Well done, PH, for starting the process early!

    If they're not willing to start at least suggesting concrete plans now, they aren't going to suddenly jump into action come September. The testing process can take a loong time. I'd start asking for dates and specifics now -- not just "Our teachers are great!" They may be, but that's not a guarantee that it'll work for your child. Go observe a class or two, if you can. Are there other gifted parents you can talk to?

    If you think ahead of time that your child might end up with behavior issues from lack of engagement, I'd be looking very hard at the options. My ds6 really had a hard time dealing with kindergarten -- and in the end, we couldn't wait for the school administration to come around.

    (I'm going to pm you our own personal "horror story" -- just to illustrate what *can* happen if you aren't specific and start too late!)

    Think about exactly what you'd like to see, and see how close they will offer *now.* If it's not good enough in your opinion, I'd look at other options.


    Edited by Mia (04/29/09 03:40 PM)
    _________________________
    Mia

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    #46113 - 04/29/09 06:19 PM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: Mia]
    incogneato Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/25/07
    Posts: 2231
    Loc: up in my head.......
    Originally Posted By: Purpleheather
    But then today I talked to a Ed. Psychologist who told me not to bother testing unless I know that the school will do something with it.


    hmmmmm......I'm certainly no educational psychologist, but as a parent of HG(+) kids, I've found the test results to be very helpful in terms of how I parent them.

    I guess an example would be the work that they get to do at home that I chose for them based on what I know about their cognitive abilities(IQ test) and interests/academic skills(out of level achievment test).

    There is NO way I would have DREAMED of giving them what they are currently working on(and loving!!) if I didn't have that info. It's great info to have if the school will take notice of it, but I'd also say it's worthwhile just to have so you know what you're dealing with. There are a lot of social/emotional isssues that sometimes go hand in hand with being gifted.

    Skipping is one option, but there are plenty of other options as well. smile

    Neato

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    #46136 - 04/30/09 06:33 AM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: incogneato]
    Kriston Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/19/07
    Posts: 6145
    Loc: Midwest
    I agree with 'Neato. Testing helped us a lot, even though the school did very little with it and we ultimately pulled him out for homeschooling.

    YMMV, of course, but especially if you have a child who hides his abilities to fit in or who doesn't necessarily look like people/you think a HG+ child is going to look (GT denial, anyone?), then seeing the test scores can really help you to recognize your child for who he is and do a better job of meeting his needs, whtever they might be.
    _________________________
    Kriston

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    #46138 - 04/30/09 06:58 AM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: Kriston]
    st pauli girl Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/29/08
    Posts: 1917
    Testing - both IQ and achievement - helped us too. We were able to take our IQ results (with an extremely helpful detailed report explaining what it all meant) to the school, and this prompted them to suggest achievement testing by the school psychologists. When they found out what they were dealing with, they now plan to offer differentiation for DS when he starts kindergarten in the fall, and they said they would never expect him to have to sit through learning how to read or early math. So, some big plusses (with the caveat that we aren't in school yet). Now we have a pretty good picture of what level DS5 is operating on, and if the particular school situation doesn't work out, we'll know what red flags to look for and what sort of alternate schooling we should seek.

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    #46164 - 04/30/09 12:10 PM Re: Woohoo! Off to a good start.(maybe not) [Re: master of none]
    PurpleHeather Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 04/10/09
    Posts: 27
    MofN you nailed it! I don't know if they are ready for him.

    My problem right now is that I don't know what would be best. I know that in DS's strongest areas much of the material seems downright insulting. I don't want to ask him to do stuff that he has been doing for over two years now. To me it seems cruel to put a child who can reason that air takes up space in a classroom that is learning that wind is moving air. In class differentiation might be ok in math but I doubt it would work in science. If I had to guess, I would say DS is working at a 3rd to 4th grade level in that area. I just have very little idea on how you begin to bridge that large a gap.

    Right now DH & I plan to work on gathering more information. We want to try & get copies of the math & science curriculum for 1st & 2nd grades. Hopefully this will give us more perspective on the schools expectations. We also want to try & sit in on a couple classes. Maybe once we do that I will have a better idea about what needs to be done for DS.

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