TR PONDERS

Bright children, who are bored to tears in school, skipping grades.

Opinions?

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20 thoughts on “TR PONDERS

  1. I wish I had pushed for it for my sons. Instead the teachers made them do all the same lessons as the rest of the class and then “extra” work to challenge them. They saw it as a punishment for being smart…

  2. This is a tough one.  I have the same problem with my boys.  I have chosen to have them remain at grade level.  Their teachers are understanding and allow them to pursue their own interests through reading etc when their classwork is done.  The main reason I decided not to push them up was that I felt both boys would benefit more in terms of social skills by being with their peers than by being pushed into a group of older children.  Both are small for their age.  Little Guy is the youngest kid in his class as his birthday falls at the end of July.  If I pushed him ahead a grade (or even 2) he would be at least 2 years younger than his peers.  Not a situation I would be happy with.  UItimately, you know your daughters best.  If you feel they would do well in an older environment, go for it.

  3. I wonder if it is easier for girls to be in a  grade or two ahead than it is for boys, especially around high school time (when all those sports kick in).  I was kind of a late bloomer as they say anyway, so I was always behind physically anyway… It is hard to be a smart kid in today’s public schools, that’s for sure. There is so much more money and so many more services if you are learning disabled than if you are ahead of the game.  Which is partially why I think I will home school my kiddies.  Gosh, I just don’t know.  I wish I could help.  PS. Hat has 3 corners, book as 4? Very clever tie in!

  4. In weighing the social awkwardness vs the extra stimulation necessary to fulfill them, I vote to keep my kids in their current grades and encourage the school programs that give them an extra oomph.  We’re extremely lucky that our math programs are by skill level and individualized and the kids are also split up into separate reading groups, too, also by skill level.

  5. Hard to be a smart kid in PS.  In second grade I can remember being a special group for academically gifted kids. Designed to keep us from getting bored. It just made the other kids treat us different.   I would rather have just gotten the whole process over with faster, and then when Mom started homeschooling I did just that.

  6. Not having kids I’m not sure my opinion is valid in today’s schoolyard.  My brother and I were both tested, and the school, which had no advanced placement etc., recommended that we both be moved up a grade.  I would have skipped kindergarten and my brother 1st grade going right to 2nd grade.  My family decided to try it with my brother, and dependent on that have me skip 1st grade the following year.  He got bullied, and became a bully at home.  I was smaller for my age than he was, and as a result my parents decided I wouldn’t skip a grade.  I think it’s a different issue with kids that are in higher grades.  Skipping the 3rd grade may be much easier as the kid has more experience and coping skills.  Being smart makes you different already; skipping a grade makes you more different.  If there were an easy smart answer, you’d have come up with it on your own, or at least you could have asked little bit.

  7. I suppose it depends on whether the bright children are as precocious socially as intellectually.  If they fit in well with older kids, it might be worth trying.

  8. I think it depends on the child.  In a broad, general way, I’m for it, because I think even the brightest kids, at some point in their academic career, will find material challenging, and if they don’t learn to appreciate the challenge (and how to process it) while they are young, it will be difficult to learn as an adult (personal experience here).  But there are social factors to consider, as well as physical things.  I don’t think overall size matters for girls as much (and as a parent, if I had a girl, I’d prefer a “late bloomer” to an early one), but things like fine motor skills matter.  Is there a huge difference in the amount of written work expected?  Little hands can tire quickly. Are there any “gifted” (I hate that word) programs at the school?  What about a magnet school?  How about afterschool or weekend programs at local community colleges?  You might want to check out Hoagie’s Gifted website as well (www.hoagiesgifted.org).  Tons of information on acceleration (both grade skipping and just subject matter, i.e., going up a grade level or two just for one or two subjects but remaining at grade level for everything else), curriculum modification, and other interesting ideas.  Good luck!

  9. That is a tough decision.  I agree with evagaringer that it might be easier for girls to skip than boys.  My aunt and uncle let my male cousin skip a grade and they later said it was one of their worst parenting mistakes.  And I know a mom who was skipped a grade, as was her husband, and she said it was not good for either of them.  Does your school district allow kids to stay with their age group but take classes at a higher level, such as a whole group of seventh graders taking 9th grade algebra?  We had terrible, terrible problems with our oldest son who is profoundly gifted and miserable at school.  In the end, I withdrew him in the middle of 10th grade and homeschooled him for half a year and then enrolled him in a community college, from which he’ll transfer into a four year school, so in a sense, he has skipped two grades because he will be a junior in college at age 18.  I was bored to tears in school and I wish my parents had let me skip.

  10. While I never skipped a grade, I was a year younger than most when I started school.  As a result, I had just turned 17 when I graduated from high school.  I didn’t get to take driver’s ed with my friends, because I wasn’t old enough; when my senior class went to see an R rated movie, I couldn’t go.  I would think long and hard were I faced with that choice for my children.  Social skills aren’t everything, but they do matter and I’m not sure how prepared the schools are to deal with that issue.

  11. I skipped 3rd grade (which my son and daughter are in, currently, as it happens!) and I nearly skipped 12th grade as well.  My father wanted me to skip 3rd grade because he thought I was his child genius.  My mother was opposed to it because she thought I was a bit social immature, and she was probably right about that.  As it turned out, it was a good thing I skipped though, because the class I ended up in was a much more motivated, animated and interested class.  (Classes take on personalities and the following year’s class at my school overall didn’t have the same spark or drive or joy of being in school and learning that my year did.)  However, it also probably contributed to my being more of a late bloomer than I was already (although that status changed significantly once I was in a different place with different kids at my university.)  Over all, I’m glad I did it, though.When I was considering skipping 12th grade and going straight on to college, my mother was successful in talking me out of it – and about this, she was probably right again.  She was afraid of the 16 year old me being on my own 200 miles away at school.So, I think that it depends on the kid.  Being academically ‘gifted’ presents challenges to both the kids and the school.  You don’t want to put a bright kid at risk for getting into trouble out of sheer boredom, but you don’t want a kid who is the youngest in the class in more ways than one either.  I don’t suppose I was much help, but I wish you luck with whatever choices you end up making,

  12. Do it, do it, DO IT!!!!  I was one of those kids who wasn’t smart enough in all subjects (math held my ass back) to be able to skip grades, so I had to be hideously bored during the vast majority of the day, and almost overwhelmed when math time came.  So I had an interesting school career.  But enough about me–I’ve often found that people often say that the child may be overwhelmed by the older kids, etc., but I believe that it depends on the child.  I know that I wouldn’t have been overwhelmed–I’d have fed on it.  I mean, it’s not like I would’ve been 6 and in college or anything.So, to repeat: DO IT!!!

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