Mom-to-Mom Support/How do I know when my preschooler is ready for Kindergarten?

How do I know when my preschooler is ready for Kindergarten?


I am currently using [a different Catholic program] with my preschooler. She will be 4 in April. I am finding that [the program] does not quite offer enough and she is looking for more. As I was gazing over the CHC Kindergarten plans, I realized we are already implementing various things in the lesson, such as practicing writing letters, numbers, counting and recognizing numbers to. I am almost tempted to start using the CHC Kindergarten plans with her, but I am not sure if that would be in her best interest or not.

I was planning on waiting until the Fall, but that seems so far away plus I know she will want to do some things in the summer as well. Have you ever had anyone as young as my daughter start the Kindergarten plans? In your experience, what do you think is the best approach? I am open to your advice and suggestions. Thank you, as always, for your kind, thoughtful responses and for your dedication and time…one of the reasons I already love CHC!

Dear Mom,

Thank you for your question!

It seems as though your daughter is ready to start kindergarten. It’s important to go with the child’s pace, but it is also important not to push forward too far. It has been my experience that starting preschool/kindergarten too early can lead to burn-out before the child reaches 2nd grade. Your daughter will only be four when you start kindergarten.

There are many aspects to a little one that don’t apply only to academics. You must also be aware of the child’s spiritual, physical, and social development. Also, in 2nd grade lesson plans, children begin their First Holy Communion preparation. This becomes difficult when the child is still too young to begin the program. So I recommend using caution when you are deciding what to do.

My suggestion is that you wait to start the kindergarten program until the Fall. You can of course continue teaching her independently, gradually preparing her for the school year as you are already doing. You can use this time to expose her to many age-appropriate books from the library.

This is also a good time to teach her some religion, little ways in which she can help at home, and activities that encourage her independence. I think it’s important at this age not to overemphasize worksheets and writing activities. Much of the child’s learning occurs outside the classroom. It’s so easy to practice numbers using objects, pictures, and manipulatives without it seeming like school work.

God bless you and your family!

Laura Corrigan

About Laura Corrigan

Laura Corrigan is a mother of five. She was homeschooled through high school and received her teaching certificate from the Franciscan University of Steubenville. She has also homeschooled her own children.