Why We Held Our Kindergartener

Well…the time has come. I will be sending my oldest to Kindergarten in the fall. How did this get here so quickly?

We had our kindergarten screening and registration last week.  And while my kid nailed the test, I really could pretty much care less. What I DO care about, is the fact that I will be sending an excited, eager, ready to learn kiddo into that K classroom.

Grant was born in May. He was late to walk and even later to talk. Both the teacher in me, and the new-mama in me, were quick to get him signed up for speech therapy when he was only 1 1/2. And while he passed all his hearing tests, constant fluid in his ears led to getting tubes around the same time.  If you are a new mama of a late talker, don’t be afraid to ask questions to your pediatrician and ask for help. I do now believe that boys tend to talk later {Stella was full on sentences at 1}, but the combo of speech therapy and tubes totally changed our lives! He went from a pretty non-compliant and frustrated toddler to an easy going child. What a huge freaking difference. HUGE. #ilovetubes #all3ofminehavethem

That being said, Chad and I decided in those early years that we would “hold” him when it came time to start school.

I was a second grade teacher before I had Grant, and typically, my lowest reading groups were made up of mostly summer birthdays. They were super smart kids, but there is still a big difference between a 7 year old and an 8 year old. Those fall babies, had the advantage of age, and it often showed up during reading time.

Add in the fact that Chad and I are both September birthdays {and grew up when school still started after labor day}. We were usually the first birthdays in our class, got our driver’s licenses first, etc. Being old is fun! Grant lost a tooth at school last month and was the first in his class. He came home buzzing all about it, and Stella was too! Ha! It was a big deal in the preschool that day! And I love that he was right up in that excitement!! Truth be told, I can’t think of a downside to being old in your grade…unless you are a genius, and would get bored…;-P

Add also the fact that he is a boy…which mature later, and should he decide to play sports {or football! ahhh!}, a couple extra inches wouldn’t hurt him.

Annnnnnd selfishly…one more year of playing hooky on sunny days, skipping town mid week to go visit my sister, and pulling him out early for a date day was ok with me. It’s time I haven’t taken for granted. 

It also means all 3 of these chickens will hit high school at the same time…which is either really awesome, or really foolish ;-P

So, Grant will be starting K in the fall as a 6 year old. And I have never felt so sure of any parenting decision I have made.

A year ago I had a more timid kid…unsure of his abilities…eager, but equally nervous.

Come August, I will still be anxious and nervous when he hops outta my car and heads into the school…but I was also be excited for him. Because HE is ready.

If you are going to be making a similar decision for your child and aren’t sure which way to swing it, here are a couple of interesting reads I came across that may help you decide what is the right choice for your child.

Thrive in 2025: Holding Kids Back for Success

Beyond the Pros and Cons of Redshirting

Also, in the name of school preparedness, I am sharing some of the intro to reading aps I’ve come across and read about that I threw on Grant’s iPad below:

Learn with Homer

Hooked on Phonics Ap

Wallykazam! Letter and Word Magic

Bob Books Reading Magic #1,2,3

Dora’s ABC Vol. 1 Letter and Letter sounds and Vol.2 Rhyming words

I firmly believe in educating yourself and on trusting your gut…so mamas, do what you think is right for your individual child. After all, no one knows them better than you!


**I feel the need to put a disclaimer that this post is made up of MY thoughts and feelings pertaining to holding MY child. Like most moms, I generally have no idea what I am doing…just doing the best I can for my kid. I in NO WAY would judge a mom that sends their child young! Every child, and every circumstance, and every family is different. As long as you are doing what you believe is best for your kiddo, I am cheering you on mamas!!

13 thoughts on “Why We Held Our Kindergartener

  1. Alison

    We did the same thing for our son! He is the oldest in his kindergarten class right now and is thriving! He struggled big time in preschool keeping up and with the social aspect so it’s nice to see him in the top of his class! And I totally agree about boys not maturing as fast.. seems like it benefits them in the long run to being one of the oldest! Grant will do great and it will be so fun to watch him excel 🙂

  2. Ashley

    Do you think your decision would have been different if he had been a 3rd child doing everything on time (or even a little early) and had learned so much from older siblings?

    1. Admin Post author

      Honestly I’m not sure…would totally depend on the child and the situation. Trust your gut for sure. I am hard pressed to send a summer birthday though {just personally}. Thankfully Stella and Beau are November birthdays so I won’t be having to decide 😉

    2. Sara Springer

      My oldest 2 are summer birthdays- we did not hold our oldest son back and he struggled. My daughter is #2 – definitely was more mature, interested in going to school and learning, was doing everything she was supposed to and when- so we thought we would go ahead and send her- she is in first grade now and struggling. Not as much as my son did, but I think that the maturity just is not there. I definitely feel like I did them both a huge disservice. We are going through supplemental work and summer school now to help her (as we did my son) but if she were in kindergarten this year she would not need it. Just threw my 2 cents in since I have been there! 🙂 Good luck with your decision!!

  3. Bailey Bryant

    YES, YES, YES!! I teach Pre-K and every year I see such a huge difference in the kids who have just turned 4 and the ones who are about to turn 5. Immaturity wise and developmentally. It takes those younger babies until well after Christmas to do what the older ones were doing in October. I knew before my Bo was born (in August) he wouldn’t be going to school until he was 5. And while he has actually been pretty on “schedule,” with walking and talking, my mind hasn’t changed! Great post!!

    1. Admin Post author

      That’s so good to hear!! I love your perspective as a pre-k teacher!! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  4. Erin

    I love this post! My daughter will be 3 in July and son will be 1 in June. We’ve already talked about holding them out to start Kindergarten until they turn 6. Looking forward to reading the stuff you linked too. Thanks 🙂

    1. Admin Post author

      Oh I hope you find the links helpful…I had made up my mind early like you, but found them to be interesting to read!!

  5. Sara Springer

    I wish I would have made the same choices for my summer birthday kids- it took my oldest until this year to really catch up and he is in 3rd grade- it was unnecessarily stressful for us all… sounds like he will have a great year next year!

    1. Admin Post author

      Oh man! I hate that for you!! I am hoping this extra time will help us {all} avoid unnecessary stress! The Kindergarten standards are so much harder than they were when we were kids!! I am so happy to hear your kiddo is all caught up now!! Go mama!!

    2. Sara Springer

      Thank you! Now I just gotta get my second caught up lol (apparently did not learn from my mistakes)! I am so glad #3-5 are winter/spring birthdays so I don’t have to think about it ha!

  6. Jenny a.

    My mom
    Was a kindergarten teacher for 25 years and she said she could always pick out her boys with summer birthdays. I heard that time and time again. Definately think there is something to it😁

  7. Heather

    I was a summer birthday. My sisters were both as well. We all agree the best thing our parents ever did for us was “hold us back”. We were always the most athletic and ahead everyone when it came to curriculum. You made (in my opinion) a great choice!

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