What do you think about when is the appropriete age to start to teach reading and writing?

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Hi Sevil,

I teach in a Catholic School in Hawaii. We actually start the reading and writing the 1st month at our school. I would prefer starting more like mid year on the reading but the pressure is on to get those little ones started on reading. I think we are pushing our children too much. They are loosing a lot of the time being children. Enjoying their lives without worrying about homework, and spelling tests. We are expecting a lot of our kindergarten students.
Thank you for your respond Cecelia,
I agree with you. We also work very hard. Our school and parents expecting too much from their children. I think that expectations make children to grow quickly without being child. At the age of 6 they start to studying.
Pre-reading and pre-writing skills are taught at my school (in MA) right from the beginning of K. We use all of Fountas and Pinnell's Effective Literacy Practices. Writer's Workshop evolves throughout the year from drawing to labeling to phrases to sentences to 4-page stories (one sentence per page). We start guided reading around February or March. I have a few kids this year who are just not showing readiness to read so I am not pushing guided reading with them right now...and i am not sorry:-)
I agree with Sevil and Cecelia.  We are pushing these kids to far to fast and they are not able to be Kindergarten students.  Seven years ago I was told I was moving to Kinder.  I was great!  I got to my classroom, I asked where are the play things like kitchens, dolls, blocks, and so on.  They laughed at me and said we don't to that anymore.  Pretty sad that our children can't be children.
I agree.. My kids liked to play outside, construct tents,playdough, blocks, play house,store and just be kids. Now-a-days all I see is Ipads,computers, ipods and video games. Our daughter at age 13 was still a kid and I am glad, she acted like a cheetah and other animals for years- today she is a vet.Though our grandchildren are reading at age 4 and can use a Ipad2 like a wiz... I guess I am just too old fashioned and would like more for them to be just kids! at times.

I think that children need to have the opportunity to be kids.  They need to have time to play, play, and play!  When children are playing they are learning.  We are expected to teach and for the children to learn alot during kindergarten.  The best thing to do is make it engaging and fun.  Turn lessons into hands-on so that they are having fun.  The only thing is, where do we find alll the time to do all of this?

Yes, where do we find the time when we are expected to be directly teaching them a whole host of things.  I believe we need to cut back on what is "required" look at what is essential and appropriate for kindergarten children. This year all of the students in my class were able to read by the end of the year.  Some children just took off reading but the ones that were not as successful as the others were reading at the emergent level.  I had to recommend additional practice during the summer so these students can keep up with the rest of the class and won't be behind the others in 1st grade.  


What I have been happy with is our school's trend with "project base learning."  The students and I had a wonderful experience with a few of the units in Social Studies and Science.  So what is the problem?  We were still expected to teach the other units.  We really need to look at our curriculum and cut back on some topics that are covered in 1st  grade and again in 2nd grade. One project based topic for science and social studies a quarter, without any other topics to cover during the year seems to be a good pace, from my experience. 


By the way, my class did have the opportunity to work with I-pads this year there are some great apps for reading, writing and math.  I especially like the ones on letter formation!  My grandson of 2yrs.  have been enjoying some time with those and other apps too. We just have to be careful to use these i-pads as tools to enhance their learning and not expect them to be their "teachers."  The little ones so much need the human contact, the loving and caring that good teachers give. I don't recall who the following quote is attributed to but I truly agree with.  I'm  not even sure of the exact words but it goes something like this:  "Students don't care how much you know until they know how much you care."  

I am really interested in your project based learning activities. My students in kinder love to learn this way. Also would love to know your favorite apps for kinder since I have 4 iPads in my room. I previously was a first grade teacher and yes we do expect all kinders to read and write as well as add and subtract. I agree that some students are just not developmentally ready formthese challenges in kinder.



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