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Should my 4 year old know how to read and write already?

DD is 4. She will be 5 in July and start kindergarten in September. MIL thinks its bad that she can't read and write already. She said all of her kids were reading when they were three and able to write their names and basic words before they turned 5. DD can write some letters (she still has problems with some) and knows all her letters and the sounds the letters make and can recognize certain words in when she see thems like in books or on tv or something. What do you think? Is she really THAT far behind?

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Asked by Anonymous at 1:16 PM on Mar. 1, 2011 in Parenting Debate

Answers (32)
  • Well..go give MIL a cookie.
    No..your child is fine and not behind at all...if she even recognizes a few letters, she is ahead of the game.

    Answer by kimberlyinberea at 1:18 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • I think she's doing fine. If you read with her, provide opportunities to play with letter recognition and writing, she'll be reading in no time. :)

    Answer by Nonoluna at 1:18 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • i'm sorry, but your mother is crazy. i'm sure there are some exceptionally advanced kids that know how to read & write by 4, but that is definitely not the norm. my dd started preschool at 4 and that's where she learned to write, but not read. she can identify some words, but can't read. your child is not behind. she'll learn it all in school.

    Answer by rAbella at 1:23 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • get some flash cards over the summer of sight words and start showing her like 4 per week. this is what they do in kindergarten. words like .."it, is, if, and, run.." it will help. the only thing she should know how to write already is her name...and just make sure she knows her address, birthday, and telephone #

    Answer by shay1130 at 1:23 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • She is a little bit behind my kids with the writing, but I don't think she is behind the norm. As for the reading she sounds about where mine are/were at that age. Different schools have different requirements for kindergarten, but she sounds like she is doing just fine and trust me most parents don't quite remember correctly when their kids did things. My mother swears I was reading before I got into kindergarten, but when I look through my report cards etc. I was NOT reading according to them.

    Answer by aeneva at 1:23 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • I honestly am unsure of an answer for you on this one. My DS is 5 yrs old and is special needs (developmental delay) and has been in a preschool class program for 3 years that has a mix of special needs/ non-special needs children in their. His teacher says he's supposed to be able to write is name by the time he goes off to kindergarten (this September). I don't think your DD is far behind personally though by the sound of it.

    Answer by shortmommy23 at 1:24 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • I found hooked on phonics on ebay for real cheap if ur worried but I wouldn't be. My son is 5 and can read some. Well, Im starting hooked on phonics soon too but just for fun not because I feel he has to know how to read right now.

    Answer by MelissaAnn224 at 1:24 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • OK..thanks...I know MIL is crazy..but, i was getting a little worried that maybe I needed to push a little more with the reading and writing because we read everyday and try to write everyday but only when she is interested in i never force her to if she doesn't want to and MIL thinks i should be spending at least 2 hours dailymaking her practice her reading and writing...


    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 1:28 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • My daughter will be 4 in 10 days. She started preschool in September at 3 and a half. She learned her ABC's in no time flat, recognizes all letters, recognizes all shapes, colors, and counts 1-20 but she still doesn't know how to read or write. It's been hard getting her to write. She likes to take the pencil and scribble. I've showed her countless times but she still doesn't get it, so I hope she gets it soon because the preschool here doesn't really do all that much teaching...they send homework home with the child and make the parents do most of the teaching. I enjoy it, and most kids in her class are even talking and writing better than her but I and my parents have been all she's had all her life so she's never had any social interaction. Your DD will get it in no time. Patience is a virtue :-)

    Answer by proudmom2510 at 1:29 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

  • get some flash cards over the summer of sight words and start showing her like 4 per week. this is what they do in kindergarten. words like .."it, is, if, and, run.." it will help. the only thing she should know how to write already is her name

    I have that Dolche word list that i made into flash cards and we practice with that everyday for at least a few minutes.


    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 1:30 PM on Mar. 1, 2011

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