Transitional Kindergarten in Oakland School District
Due to my son's birthdate he won't enter kindergarten until 6 years old in 2017. Some tell me that it's actually better for a boy, anyway, given slower social development. I have a very smart and savvy kiddo, but he could use some social skills (despite being in a preschool setting for 2 years...). Anyone have advice/experience with this? I have a disability that does not allow me to drive, or even take the bus long-distance. Does anyone know if my disability will be considered by the OUSD when choosing a T-K program for my son? I live in lower Rockridge, Oakland, a few blocks away from Peralta (Rockridge area) and about 1 mile to Chabot. Neither has one, but the nearest schools are Emerson and Piedmont (both a bus ride away). Does anyone have experience with the Emerson or Piedmont programs, or any other in the OUSD? Thanks for advice. CR
Here's what I know about the transitional K program at Emerson:
- Last year there were 25+ kids with ONE teacher who did not have an assistant or an aide with her for any portion of the school day.
- The students are given activities that do not seem age-appropriate, such as tracing numbers 1-100 on a hundreds chart, and lots of time spent sitting for instruction. There seems to be lots of desk work (worksheets, closed-ended projects) and not a lot of open-ended, creative/interactive projects.
- Last year's teacher was dedicated and well-intentioned but new to teaching, and with 25+ kids, I'm worried she will burn out quickly. But she has good classroom management skills and manages to teach the children even though she has way too many in her classroom.
Hope this info helps.
Hello! I've recently realized that our son will be eligible for TK in the 2015 school year. He will be five in September. We are zoned for Glenview but on the border of the zone for Sequoia. I don't know if zoning matters for TK, and I do know that Glenview will be moving during construction, and currently doesn't have a TK. I've read good things generally about the Sequoia TK. But, I know the TK program is quite new, so I'm wondering if any parents of current TK Sequoia kids can give some input. Do you like the teacher? How was the transition from preschool? What were things that you liked or disliked about the class/teacher? And this is more of a TK general question... How does one decide if their child is TK ready? Thanks in advance! I appreciate your input. Allison
My son is in 1st at Sequoia and was in regular K last year with the teacher who is currently teaching TK (Tontra Love). Last I heard she would be teaching TK again next year but I can't say that with 100% certainty as I am not in a position to know. I can't speak to TK since I didn't experience it, but I can say that any child would be lucky to be in Ms. Love's class. I truly cannot say enough wonderful things about her as a teacher and a person. She is warm and loving yet sets good boundaries. She strives to meet each kid where they are at, provides differentiated instruction, and was unbelievably helpful with behavioral challenges my child had both when in her class and also this year -- never blaming or labeling and always seeing his strengths and wanting to help him succeed. Based on my experience, I really can't imagine a person more suited to teaching TK. She truly surpassed all my hopes and dreams for what his first teacher would be like. I'd also like to give a plug for Sequoia as a school. We have been very happy there and have found the teachers and administrators to be very welcoming to the diverse community served by the school. It is really a very sweet place. A Sequoia Mom
I'm a parent of a child with an early Sept. birthday who ''should'' be starting kindergarten in 2014. We are starting to investigate our school options and are hoping the Transitional Kindergarten program at Emerson Elementary in Oakland will be just what we're looking for. The reason I'm reaching out to this list is because I've had a very hard time finding any parent feedback on the program at Emerson and also feedback on what happens after TK. We plan on sending our kids to our neighborhood school for elementary (not emerson). I'm wondering if many of the TK kids leave Emerson after TK? Also if participating in TK effects your chances of getting into your neighborhood school. Thanks for your insight! Curious Parent
Not all schools have TK programs, so many students go to other schools for TK, then on to whatever school they get into for regular kindergarten. My daughter was in TK at PLACE @ Prescott, and is going to Chabot for kindergarten.
In regards to the TK program, I would describe it as what Kindergarten used to be when we were all growing up. More play-oriented, less emphasis on academics as compared to current kindergartens, and age appropriate. Having had my daughter at Emeryville Child Development Center for PRE-K, I definitely thought my daughter learned a lot more in TK, as opposed to PreK in preschool. I felt she was challenged a lot more, but the program also takes into account the younger age of the children, as opposed to being in kindergarten, so there's nap-time, etc. wendy
My daughter went to TK last year and we were very happy with Ms. E's class. She is a really great teacher and highly recommended. In the TK class had many kids coming from elsewhere, Emerson not their home school. My daughter will stay at Emerson for K, but many of her classmates went back to their home school- I would said 2/3 of the class. Like any other school, parents need to get involved and volunteer in class which we did and that helped the teacher and the kids. TK mother
My son's birthday qualified him to start kindergarten last fall so I enrolled him at our local elementary school, but then worried that he wasn't quite ready for ''big kid'' school and all the confinements that came with that. After much debate and worry, I made the decision to enroll him in the TK program at Emerson--site unseen--which is a 20-minute commute for our family. As it is a pilot program, there wasn't a lot of information going in and all the parents were nervous and didn't really know what to expect. I can tell you that we were all pleasantly surprised. What we got was an amazing teacher (Danielle Erwin) who is passionate about educating young minds. The class sits on the carpet, instead of at desks, so it is not as formal as a classroom. Ms. Erwin does a good job blending play and instruction. The transition to the full-day schedule, limited play time and short lunch period was a big adjustment but I think it's great to have a year to get used to a new routine and school environment without all of the academic pressure that kindergarten now brings. I have absolutely no regrets about enrolling my son in TK and the Emerson community is great. All of the parents are incredibly passionate, and contribute in their own ways. My son's class was approximately 23 kids, and 9 were from outside the neighborhood so will attend kindergarten at a school other than Emerson. Attending TK at Emerson will not impact your assignment as the district assigns you to the school in your neighborhood regardless. Feel free to contact me if I can answer any other questions! Emerson TK Parent Alumni
Hi, my daughter turns five on September 12 of this coming September and i am interested in the OUSD transitional kindergarten program. Does anybody have any experience with this program? Was it good or bad? Have you heard anything about it? What school did your child attend? I'm also considering putting her in kindergarten and perhaps keeping her there for two years. Does anybody have experience with that? She would be going to Chabot. Thanks for your advice. Mom of sept birthday kid
I'm a parent of a fall birthday kid, we're enrolling her in TK next year. As I understand it, TK is prioritized for kids who have birthdays within the cut off. So for next year, that would be for kids with birthdays between Oct. 1 and Dec. 1. So if there is more space, they'd consider a Sept birthday kid. Don't know anything about trying to do two years in K, sorry. Good luck! fall birthday mama