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 Delpit Article 
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In the article about Delpit she discussed the fact that schools are labeling kids as being slow because they do not know their letters, etc., upon arriving at school. However, she said that we are labeling them before teachers even teach them the letters. This is a result of some kids knowing the alphabet upon arriving at school while others need to be taught. I do not teach kintergarden and do not know if this happens...what have you seen in your own experiences?

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Molly Anderson
Third Grade Teacher


Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:59 am
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Molly, this does not happen at our school mainly because a good number of the students that come to us~ don't know the alphabet! We would have over half of our class labeled. I find it hard to believe that the more we teach these young children the more they want them to know. Now, I'm not saying that we shouldn't be teaching core subjects, because I do believe that. On the other hand there are some things that are age appropriate for kindergarteners, and some things that are not. We can not expect them to grasp a concept that they are not mentally ready for. I have found that children that I get from some pre-school programs have labeled children - DD (developmentally delayed). I do not agree with it because I have had 3 out of 4 of those students test out of EC since they have been in my class. That tells me that they should not have been labeled in the first place.

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Diamond


Mon Oct 24, 2005 2:16 pm
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I know my experience with teaching kindergarten in the past, was that if a child came to school not knowing their letters, they were behind, but this was due to the expectations that were expected of them and which was never developmentally appropriate. I think that we rush kids so much and parents are so concerned with their child being behind if they come to school not having some of these skills, that we have completly forgotten was is appropriate for this young age. What pressure to put on such young children. No wonder so many of them dislike school so much.

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Penny Loschin
Stokesdale Elementary


Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:41 pm
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Many teachers feel that way, but because we have over half that come to us not knowing them, it is not "a red flag" to label them. I find myself teaching my own child things that I know will put her ahead of the game when she starts kindergarten, even though I know many of these things are not age appropriate.

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Diamond


Wed Oct 26, 2005 12:33 pm
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My mother taught Kind. she always had a large number of students that did not know their Alphab. I believe you just have to teach the students that you are given and keep going. Don't leave them behind and Don't try putting them off to someone else. Teach the child social skills with all the other children, having them tie their shoes, and ect.

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Joseph G. Adams


Wed Oct 26, 2005 6:41 pm
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I have taught Kindergarden in rural Georgia, and it was often true that children were considered and even labelel as having a learning disability because they did not come to school knowing what people thought they ought to know. My own daughter who is now in her second year in college was almost labeled as language delayed because she did not know what a caboose was.How many 5 year olds do unless they have been taught it? Well, I told them that when she is exposed to it, she will learn it. That is the job I hoped they would do. Labeling, especially at tha age, was not an option. Well, she turned out just fine.


Fri Oct 28, 2005 12:57 am
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I taught kntg. and 1st grade for several years. Even back then, kids were at a small disadvantage if they did not know their letters. With the k-2 assessment in place now, kntg. is what first grade used to be. Kntg. children are having more and more expectations placed on them. These expectations trickle down from 5th grade. It is sad that kids can't be kids any more and some of the social skills they need are not taught as before.

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Donna Cannon
Moore Magnet School
451 Knollwood Street
Winston-Salem, NC 27104


Sun Oct 30, 2005 3:40 pm
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I think all students, regardless of grade level, are being challenged with higher expectations. The math that I am required to teach my 5th graders is math that I learned in 7th grade. Some people believe we are asking too much from our students but I think that in order to be competitive with children in other countries our students will need to know more. I hate that, since some of what I teach is not applicable for students ages 9-11. They are not ready for it. It's sad that we label so many students. I have 28 students and 13 have PEP's!

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LaVerne


Mon Oct 31, 2005 10:08 pm
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I think many of the things kindergarten teachers see is related to the fact that many children are not in language rich environments. A recent article from the state department said that an average five year old has had about 32,000 hours of interactive speech with others. Economically disadvantaged children have had less than half of that. This inhibits their language and listening skills, not that they can't do it, but someone (school) has to take up the slack and start to fill in the gaps as best we can.

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Janet Atkins


Tue Nov 01, 2005 9:29 pm
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I know I have had a difficult time adjusting to the K-2 curriculum, I have been out of K about 19 years and I don't remember knowing all my ABC's when I cam to K. I also understand the concept of accountability and standards. Having Kindergardeners take a writing test was over the top for me. I don't think I began to write sentences before 1st grade. Anyway I think this is yet another way the educational system has choosen to take a position to Leave Some Children Behind, based on their exposure and parental help and assistance prior to Kindergarden. I understand there are goals but until we have teachers take the position that I expect ALL Students to Know or Strive to know these concepts when leaving my class, then there will always be the priviledge versus the unpriviledged.

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Overworked, Young, Ambitious Teacher


Thu Nov 03, 2005 2:42 pm
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