If you found this page, you’ve probably got a little one that’s about to start elementary school. The transition from preschool to grade school is a big step. In fact, a much bigger one than I even fathomed. We’re officially half way through our year of Kindergarten, with our oldest son, and I’ve been completely surprised by some things. There are some expectations for Kindergarten that I’ve found to be completely FALSE. I’m calling it like I see it and sharing the things that have blindsided me the most.
5 Expectations For Kindergarten That Are Completely FALSE
- “They’re too young for testing and won’t get any tests” – This is dependent on where you live, but our county DEFINITELY tests by using state standards. By the end of the first quarter of Kindergarten, they’re expected to count to 50, write their name and know at least 30 sight words. Sight words are something that you’re about to be very familiar with. Your child should be able to look at a word (like “And”) and know exactly what it reads without hesitation. They don’t teach children, in preschool, how to flat-out memorize something. That’s going to be totally new to your child and they’ll be tested. If you can, before Kindergarten starts, ask the school for a list of sight words. Practice over the summer!
- “They Don’t Celebrate Christmas In Public School” – We’re a Christian family and this took me by surprise. We do live in the south, which might make a difference, but I do not think the schools are separating religious holidays. In fact, my child’s public school is celebrating Christmas every chance they get. While it doesn’t bother me, I think it would really bother parents who are striving to raise their child in a non-Christian religion. Know how your school celebrates holidays before the school year starts. Your child may need to opt out of certain activities.
- “We’ll Only Ask For Money This One Time” – This is the BIGGEST lie I’ve been told from the school. In fact, we donated more than any other family in the school year’s first fundraiser because we thought that was the only one. Boy – we were SO wrong. Every week, we’re asked to donate for a cause. The schools are always in need of financial assistance. We got a letter in the beginning of the year, written by the Principle, bribing the parents to pay a flat donation in exchange for less fundraisers. It didn’t work and now we’re all miserable together. To keep your sanity, don’t feel obligated to help out every time.
- “The Kindergarten School Supply List Is All They’ll Need” – This one really upset us. If you don’t know how public schools work, the teachers create a class supply list of things the students will need. Our list included things like “23 glue sticks” or “23 scissors.” You pick 1-2 items to buy and they’re all put together in a pile and distributed. Your child might get one item that they get to pick out just for them – like the pencil case. However, our son has received multiple homework assignments that are to be completed online. NOBODY MENTIONED HIM NEEDING A COMPUTER & INTERNET ACCESS. We’re not letting him use our work computers either. Had we known about this previously, in preschool, we could’ve saved for a used computer. A 5-year-old on a MacBook isn’t happening.
- “They Won’t Get Any Homework” – One of the expectations for Kindergarten is homework. They need to be reading, studying sight words, working on math worksheets or doing online work every night. I thought it would be like preschool and my child wouldn’t need my assistance after school. Instead, I’m helping him daily. I work from home and I oftentimes think about the parents who don’t have that luxury. If you’re not being hands-on about your child’s education, they DO start to fall behind. At 5-years-old, they don’t have the discipline yet to complete homework on their own time.
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