Monday, November 7, 2011

Give Me a S-P-I-R-I-T!

It’s Spirit Week at school. Today was “Wear Your Favorite Sports Team Day” so Parker sported her cute Browns outfit courtesy of Pap and Nana.

In other news, I’m already thinking about kindergarten. Yes, that thing that’s years into the future. The reason being is that Michigan has a cut-off date of December 1st, meaning that you are allowed to enter kindergarten as long as you turn five by that date. So with an October birthday we have two choices—enter Parker in kindergarten “early” at age four or “late” at age five.

I stumbled across this New York Times article recently—Delay Kindergarten at Your Child’s Peril—which takes the stance of early enrollment being better than later since it gives children the greatest chance to learn. “Brain development cannot be put on pause, so the critical question is how to provide the best possible context to support it. For most children, that context is the classroom.”

While Parker’s daycare is different in a sense from kindergarten, it is still a classroom of sorts. She is exposed to many things that I single handedly could not offer—a room full of friends her own age, projects, games, the opportunity to practice social skills—and she is learning at a rapid pace--physically, mentally, and socially. Of course we think that she is brilliant (don’t all parents though), most definitely the next Einstein, but when the teachers tell us how smart and advanced she is it really makes you take a step back and realize how beneficial her daycare experience truly is.

So if we had to make a decision now I’d say early kindergarten. Both Kris and I entered when we were newly five due to our summer birthdays and Parker is on the right track to be socially and mentally ready for the challenge. It's a long time away though so who knows how we will feel in a few years!

Happy new week all!

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