A retired Kindergarten teacher wrote
When kdgtn was a place to play-act, learn the alphabet, build w/blocks, count objects, make friends, be a friend, share, listen to stories and do finger play and sing songs and sit cross-legged on the rug, and understand (sort of ) what a line of others is, and learn to take turns and to speak with an inside voice and to finger paint and to use paint at an easel to paint fire engines and use the colors....NOT to be tested to the core, but to be exposed to the best in early childhood and then to explore and then to own and direct. And then it changed and I retired...could not tolerate the tears and frustrations of little first graders who had to do math facts in short seconds and would instead have bathroom accidents in the room or have tummy aches and cry....filling in bubbles my foot! Testing was in the moment and highly interactive with responses and then reiterations of examples...by observation and gentle care. Miss those days...and feel so sorry for little people today who bark back the rules and verbage but can't get it down or correct on paper YET ! Reading by 9 is excellent; rote learning by 18 is impractical.
You remember, Kindergarten was fun!
Even today, preKindergarten to some is what Kindergarten was. I have seen the preK homework and it appears to be the end of Kindergarten/beginning of first grade skills of the past.
Kindergarten means “Garden of Children” .
Instead it has become a desert where you cannot let children be children because everything is ordered, set, dictated, planned, and then tested. They might as well test these poor kids right out of the womb.
Kindergarten is really the first grade rather than beginning of a child’s education; Kindergarten is really the child’s first step into thirteen years of boredom, learning to the test and to the test calendar and being a piece of data rather than an individual; Kindergarten is really the end to the means of a being a child and the initiation into the process of testing and data, and the foregoing of a proper, well rounded education.