What’s preschool age?
Parents often ask what age preschool start. Well, the average age range of preschool is approximately (2 up to 4-years old) as it varies from one preschool to another and more importantly from one toddler to another.
What is kindergarten age?
The kindergarten age is 5-years old minimum for most states (some states accept kids at 4-years old ) up to 6-years old.
Ex: for kindergarten age in California a child must be 5 years old on or before 9/01 while in Delaware, a child must be 5 on or before 8/31.
For more details for your state visit: National Center for Education Statistics.
Another common question is how old is pre k? or
Pre k is what age?
pre-kindergarten children are in most cases 4 or 5 years old age range.
Pre k vs preschool
Pre-kindergarten is similar to preschool but since children in pre k are older they receive higher levels of learning the basics of reading, math, and activities as they tend to travel with their teachers outside the class.
What does redshirting mean?
Redshirting is the delaying of a child from entering kindergarten for about a year. It’s only recommended when the kid has not met the minimum skills and or physical growth.
During the redshirting time, the kid should be prepared for kindergarten. I will discuss how to know if your child is ready for preschool or kindergarten.
But first, let’s know the difference between the two.
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Preschool Vs Kindergarten, what is the difference?
First, preschool is not formal or mandatory by the government system of education.
on the other hand, kindergarten is formal but not mandatory as preschool.
The law states that for kids to enter grade 1 they have to be 6-years old, therefore, Preschool and kindergarten prepare kids to enter grade 1.
The main differences between preschool and kindergarten are:
Most Preschool starts at 24 months and end preschool at the age of 5.
Most kindergarten starts at 44 months and ends at the age of 6.
In preschool, the schedule is flexible where a child can attend half days or full days.
In kindergarten, some states require children to attend 5 days/week full days every day while other states accept kindergartens to allow a half-day program and attendance can be mandatory or not mandatory according to the rules of each state.
visit the National Center for Education Statistics for more details.
C. Teacher to students ratio:
in preschool is nearly 1 teacher:8 students while kindergarten the ratio is 1:20 and 1:23 max.
In preschool, a lot of children are dependent on their parent’s existence where parents enter with their children the classes and helping them with their stuff.
while in kindergarten -and since kindergartners are older in age- their parents drop them off and kids enter their kindergartens independently.
E. Formal assessments:
Many preschools use formal assessments but they are not mandatory
while in kindergartens, formal assessments are required where kindergarten follows a certain curriculum.
F. Class options:
preschoolers tend to stay in their classes all the time (don’t move outside class)
kindergartners travel with their educators outside the classroom and go to (the art room, the library, the gym,…) gaining more independence as they move around and meet a variety of ages in the school.
Is my child ready for kindergarten or preschool?
This is the most important question you have to ask yourself as choosing the wrong time for your child to enter preschool or kindergarten can impact them for years to come.
that is no joke………
There is no specific age for children to go to preschool or kindergarten as it varies from one child to the other.
So, to decide here are some tips for you:
1- Monitor their social skills. If not good then you must prepare them by contacting their relatives and neighbors of near age just to play around and communicate before sending them to kindergarten or preschool.
2- See how your child responds to challenges. If they are self-dependent, then they are more likely prepared
and if not, and he/she still depends on you then waiting a whole year (which is known as redshirting as mentioned later) can sometimes help them to be more confident and independent when they start preschool or kindergarten.
3- Your kid has to be able to do simple tasks ( at least potty trained and understanding easy instructions).
4- Talk to your pediatrician at every visit as they do developmental screens and they will know if your child is on track or there are some concerns.
5- Get help and consultation from the preschool or kindergarten you plan to send your child to as they will help you decide.