Redshirting your child can be used for two different things. You can redshirt your child to improve their athletic capability or you can redshirt your child for their academic career. Redshirting is becoming more popular with the academics. Making the decision to redshirt your child can be a difficult one. While you want your child to have the maturity to attend school, you don’t want them to become behind in school because they were not ready academically or socially. Making the decision needs to be based on the parent and if the parent believes their child will succeed academically as a student.
Making the decision to redshirt a child usually happens around the school district or private school age cutoff date. The closer the child’s birthday is to the cutoff day; many times the child will be redshirted as a student. Doing so will allow the child to not be the youngest in the class, but will be one of the older students in the classroom the following year. Their maturity level will also be higher. In a study that was conducted, boys are delayed a year more than girls are. There are also children that are redshirted not because of their age, but because of their academic levels. They may not be ready for math, reading and the general knowledge they will be taught.
In a study that was included teachers stated that just below half of their students were ready for kindergarten. In another study conducted, children that are the youngest in class may struggle at first, but by third grade are caught up to the older students. This is due to the confidence the child gains through their first few years of school. As a child increases their self confidence, they perform their academic work better and socialize with other students on a higher level. Having your child’s academic and social levels tested before they start the kindergarten school year will also help you make the decision as a parent if your child is ready to become a student.
Making the decision to redshirt your child can be a difficult, ask a few questions to your child’s preschool teacher and also to the kindergarten teacher they may have. Ask the preschool teacher how your child did as a student. How did your child interact with other children in the preschool class? When asked to do something, did your child listen to the preschool teacher? When working on a project, did your child use detail and take their time or did they bore easily with the project at hand? These questions will give you an idea if your child is ready to sit through longer classes and achieve projects and assignments that are given to them.
When you meet with the kindergarten teacher, ask to view the curriculum that your child will be taught as a student. With the information the preschool teacher gave you, you as the parent will be able to determine if your child can handle the work that will be placed in front of them as a kindergarten student. You can also ask your kindergarten teacher for their suggestions and advice about redshirting your child as a student. Kindergarten teachers are the first step to your child having a successful academic career. They will be able to help steer you in the proper direction and help you make your decision. If you do decide to have your child become a student, keep the lines of communication open with your child and with their teacher. If your child is not succeeding as a student, you can still make the decision to redshirt them.