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Is your child ready for kindergarten? Here are a few things to consider

The Seattle Times – Paige Cornwell

“With school sign-up time approaching, this is the time of year many parents have to ask a tricky question: Is my child ready for kindergarten? And if the answer is no, they wonder whether to “redshirt” the child — a term borrowed from sports that means holding kids out of school for a year to give them more time to grow academically, physically or socially. “It’s a perennial question for parents,” said Kristen Missall, associate professor at the University of Washington College of Education. “It’s one of the questions I get the most.” In Washington, students must be 5 years old on or before Aug. 31 to enroll in kindergarten. But state law doesn’t require that students enroll in school until they’re 8, so parents can keep them at home or in child-care programs for an additional year — or more.”(more)

Intervention offered in school readiness program boosts children’s self-regulation skills

Science Daily – Staff Writer

“Self-regulation skills — the skills that help children pay attention, follow directions, stay on task and persist through difficulty — are critical to a child’s success in kindergarten and beyond. The intervention, co-developed and tested by OSU’s Megan McClelland, a nationally-recognized expert in child development, uses music and games to help preschoolers learn and practice self-regulation skills.”(more)

Analysis: By 2022, America Will Need 1 Million More College Grads With STEM Training Than We Are on Track to Produce

The 74 Million – Blair Blackwell and Talia Milgrom-Elcott

“As our economy evolves, we must evolve with it, developing a workforce prepared to meet the demands of a new economy. Now is our chance to build a workforce ready to succeed over a lifetime, not just over the next three to five years. At the heart of the opportunities and risks we face in a new global economy is the increasing value of skills rooted in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Indeed, 10 of the top 14 fastest-growing industries require STEM training. To keep up with the projected growth in demand for STEM jobs, America will need an additional 1 million more college graduates with STEM training by 2022 than we’re on track to produce.”(more)

When Academic Gaps Spiral Year After Year: The Harrowing ‘Jenga’ of Lost Student Skills — Captured in One Chart

The 74 Million – Beth Hawkins

“We’ve heard it a thousand times if we’ve heard it once: The academic gap between disadvantaged and affluent kids starts out small in the early years and compounds as a student progresses through school. By the time a young person living in poverty, with a disability, or learning English is in high school, it’s often a yawning chasm. It’s practically educational dicta. But how many non-teachers understand how that gap opens and what widens it? And how many educators have truly absorbed the drip-drop impact of the small deficits they let go during their daily triage?.”(more)

OPINION: What does the fusion of academic and social development look like in kindergarten?

The Hechinger Report – Vincent J. Costanza

“When states across the nation recently turned in accountability plans required under the 2015 Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), they showed great variety in their plans for early learning. With much of the funding going directly to school districts, state and district partnerships will be crucial to ensuring that these plans address the real-life issues that school districts throughout the country are facing.”(more)

How to introduce kindergarteners to computers

E-School News – Bethany Nill

“I work with roughly 500 kindergarten through 5th-grade students. As part of their curriculum, students receive 40 minutes each week of technology class. During the first quarter, we focus on the keyboard. Today’s students are expected to have some typing proficiency as early as kindergarten. For example, our students must be able to, at minimum, type their first and last name in order to access their devices and accounts. Our 2nd– through 5th-graders take computer-based assessments which require them to type constructed responses to questions. Learning to type is not an option for our students; it’s an essential skill.”(more)