How to Decide If Your Child Should Repeat a Grade

How To Decide If Your Child Should Repeat A Grade

Parents always worry about their children. Are they eating enough? Are they sleeping enough? Do they get enough exercise? Do they play well with other kids? These are all common questions that parents ask themselves almost daily. However, the single most important question every parent asks without fail is “How is my child doing in school?”
This question is a source of constant concern for all parents and school teachers across the country aim to provide the best education possible for children of all ages. However, it may very well happen that the difficult decision must be reached about whether or not a child should have to repeat a grade.

Repeating a grade does not mean a child is less intelligent than his/her peers

As a parent you have to ask yourself if repeating a grade is in the best interest of your child. There could be many factors leading to a child not doing well in a particular grade. Due to the laws regulating education children are able to begin kindergarten when they are five years of age. Physically, these children are at an age where they can begin school but developmentally they may be behind a few months from other children. Most children are five years old when they begin kindergarten but turn six at some point during the school year. A child born in the summer time will remain five and therefore younger than most of his/her classmates. This could be a concern especially if the older children pick on the younger one. This source of tension within the classroom may cause the child to fall behind in his/her subjects.

Repeating a grade could help the child catch up to his/her peers

A child repeating a grade could quickly master those skills he/she lagged behind in during the previous school year. A new year started with a new teacher would also be very beneficial. Each teacher, while following closely state regulated curriculum guidelines, still has a unique teaching style and the child may feel more comfortable with a different teacher. Research has shown that children also have different learning styles and a teacher aware of these different learning styles should be able to adapt instruction specific to that child. When different learning styles are catered to then children repeating the grade could catch up quickly with his/her peers. These children would also have caught up in age to their peers and therefore feel more at ease with children their own age.

The earlier a child repeats a grade the better

Good communication is vital between parents and teachers. Watch closely to see if your child is struggling with anything during the school year. Summer school may help if it’s simply a matter of getting extra instruction in one subject area. However, if the whole year has been stressful on the child then listen to the advice of teachers. Some teachers may suggest a child repeat kindergarten. Parents don’t like hearing their child has to repeat a grade. Often they associate repeating a grade with being slow-witted when in fact that is not the case. If the child does go on to first grade then it falls on the parent and the first grade teacher to see how he/she does throughout the year. If first grade was challenging then each successive year will only get worse for the child. The earlier the child repeats the grade the better it is in the long run. Most children being told they have to repeat in later grades will feel inadequate and could cause problems with self-esteem.

Putting a child at ease about having to repeat a grade

It is most definitely not in the child’s best interest to accuse them of being dumb or lacking motivation in completing class work or homework. Often there are many factors that may contribute to a child having to repeat a grade. Whatever the case may be put your child’s mind at ease by telling him/her that they are not repeating because they are dumb and can’t do the work. Instead tell them that sometimes it takes a little longer for some kids to get certain skills mastered and that an extra year in that particular grade will help them with those skills. Tell them they would be better off with children of their own age instead of older kids if it’s the case of those summer babies that start school a little earlier than most. Tell them that they will do so well they will be the ones to come out on top and be able to help other kids in the class. Make children feel confident in their abilities to learn and learn at their own pace so they don’t view having to repeat a grade as a negative thing. And finally always praise your child about how good they are doing in school, be aware of every piece of paper that comes home from the school, and stay in constant contact with your child’s teacher about any concerns you have about your child. Every child is capable of being successful in school.

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