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Questions from a First Time Kindergarten Mom

Posted September 9, 2015 - 5:50pm

Okay, this is a lot so I am going to try to be as short as possible and summarize all of my concerns.

1. Is it normal for a usually outgoing kid to only make one friend on the first day? (Last year in pre-school on the first day he mentioned six friends by name and this year only has one he refers to as a friend and doesn’t know anyone else’s name. )
2. Cursive writing? The school curriculum mentioned cursive writing will be learned during the second semester of school and they use a specific handwriting method, which must be mastered in the most basic state or the child will receive a lesser grade. (My son writes so you can see what it is but, it is nowhere near the level of neatness illustrated in the book)

Over the summer, we worked on writing, ABCs, numbers, and things like that. I also have a kindergarten workbook that I use with him (even that seems basic compared to what they will be learning this year besides learning tallying and roman numbers, which was in the book). I am concerned that my kid might be behind now.

What were your kid’s kindergartens experiences like? I feel like I have a lot of work to do at home. We always do educational stuff, but I feel like I need to put it on turbo speed or something.

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Mommy Ramblings

The one friend on the first day would not worry me, I think it is good he made one friend on the first day. You have to remember many kids are not good at relaying everything that went on during the day. With many kids it can be like pulling teeth to get any details of their day.Cursive writing taught in Kindergarten, I have never heard of script being taught to kids that young. They can dictate levels kids need to be at in order to move to the next grade. In our Kindergarten all kids must be reading fluently at a certain level to promote to 1st grade. I am in NY State and our kindergarten curriculum is more like what first grade was. Once they added a full day pre-k to our school, it change Kindergarten. No more free play it is very academic. Kids are in reading groups, they are learning all their sight words and must be reading on a 1st grade level by the end of kindergarten or will be asked to repeat the grade. They must write stories, have good reading comprehension, pass standardized testing and more.


I think public schools are forgetting that little kids need to blow off steam & play a bit. It was a lot more relaxed when my kids were in school.


That sounds like so much pressure for a five year old (and their parents!)  I agree, one friend is great and he probably socialized with other and just didn't tell you about it — I still can't get my kids to talk about their day with much detail (1st & 3rd grade).


I can see why you would be concerned. I have never heard of cursive before 2nd or usually 3rd grade. That seems crazy. To me, I would email or have a short talk with the teacher to understand the reasoning behind that. I would also express your concerns about feeling behind and let the teacher know that you would like some pointers in this area so your child can be successful!

Frugal Minded M...

Are they teaching Danelian hand writing where print letters have curves on them.  My son learned that at his kindergarten back years ago.  Then we moved to PA where they didn't do it and he got punished for putting curves on letters.I find it very interesting that they are pushing cursive because my school has stopped teaching it all together. Definitely agree that if you are concerned to talk to the teacher.  You will be your child's biggest advocate in school - all through, and never be embarrassed to call and discuss concerns.  As far as the friend issue, I don't think they allow as much time in kindergarten for socialization as they do in preschool which may be why he doesn't have as many names for you.


You should not be concerned about one friend. It's a new environment that is very structured. I bet he has more friends by week's end! As for the's a peculiar thing, my second to the youngest (6th grade) never had cursive lessons--the school system decided it was like an ancient writing or something, but my younges (4th grade) knows some cursive from Kindergarten. I've learned to just roll with things like handwriting (we practice at home) When you get to that part of Kindergarten, revisit your thoughts and if they are still those of concern, schedule a meeting with the teacher to discuss your child's progress. It's all we can do. :)


I wondered the same thing about making friends, because I was surprised when my outgoing kindergartner only made one friend the first day. I think it is because they had to sit and listen more since it was all new. I'm no longer worried about it. But cursive? My 4th grader's teacher said they really don't even teach that at all anymore, per state standards (although some teachers do). But when they do, it's like in 2nd grade. At our school, they seem to meet the kids at what level they are on. Or they say they will - we are new at this so we'll see! 

Your Kid's Table

I agree with the others, one friend is great. There is so much more going on and not as much time for play. I would definitely get in touch with the teacher. We are starting kindergarten too and do not have those same demands.