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When children are ready for school, they are ready for life

The Miami Herald – David Lawrence, Jr.

“As a new school year begins, more than 230,000 Florida children are stepping into kindergarten to begin their primary education, and perhaps 30 percent of them won’t really be ready to succeed. In Florida, age is the sole determining factor for entry into public kindergarten programs. But child education experts — and common sense — will tell you that age alone is not the best way to measure readiness.”(more)

Understanding transitional kindergarten: a quick guide

Ed Source – Ashley Hopkinson

“Transitional kindergarten is an option for younger children, who are not old enough for kindergarten, to gain social and academic experience. The program, like kindergarten, isn’t mandatory but children must have their 5th birthday by a certain month to even qualify.”(more)

Full-day kindergarten works, and should be extended across the country: Editorial

The Toronto Star – Editorial

“Now the results of a new study by researchers at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) provide strong evidence that the experiment is paying off in spades. The research, which tracked almost 600 children, should point the way for other provinces and territories to follow Ontario’s lead, for academic, social and economic reasons.”(more)

Children gain learning boost from two-year, full-day kindergarten

Medical X-Press – Janette Pelletier

“Ontario made a bold public policy move in September 2010 when full-day learning was made available to all four- and five-year-old children in the province—via a unique two-year, full-day kindergarten program. This investment by one province in an innovative play-based kindergarten program seems to be paying off. Preliminary findings from our research at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education reveals that this unique full-day kindergarten (FDK) program has lasting benefits for children’s behaviour as well as their learning. Children in this program scored higher on reading, writing and number knowledge than those in a half-day program and remained ahead until the end of Grade 2.”(more)

TEACHER VOICE: A little more conversation? Language and communication skills that make all the difference for kindergarten

The Hechinger Report – Devin Walsh

“Promoting good oral language and communication skills is perhaps the most important thing parents, caregivers and educators can do to prepare children to enter kindergarten. Having just completed my 17th year of teaching at Oak Grove Primary School in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, with over 800 students in kindergarten and first grade, I see children daily who have been exposed to models of good oral language. Sadly, I also see many who have not had these models and enter kindergarten at a disadvantage.”(more)

Kindergarten anxiety? Use the summer to prepare your child

Medical X-Press – Michael Lee Zwiers

“It’s the first day of kindergarten for your child, and you’re not sure who’s more anxious. Excitement, trepidation, anticipation. Starting school can be a stressful time. Use the summer weeks to prepare and this significant step in life can go smoothly. You can focus on more important matters like making sure you get a great photo of your child in front of the school on Day One! If you plan in advance and follow a few simple steps, the day can be memorable in all the right ways.”(more)