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When Kindergarten's Tough on Boys

Just when you thought school was a breeze, your boy is dragging his feet when he gets near his classroom. What gives? "The first year of school used to be about making friends and learning to put on your own boots. But now the littlest kids are doing the kind of work third-graders did years ago," says Peg Tyre, author of The Trouble With Boys, which examines why they're struggling academically.

More seat work and circle time means less free play and gym class, leaving naturally wiggly boys hardly any time to blow off steam. What else can be torturous? Worksheets, because boys' fine motor skills usually develop later. If your little guy is having a tough time of it, speak up on his behalf:

Ask about the schedule. Is recess taken away for "bad behavior"? Explain that less time spent playing may only make your boy more restless.

Request mini-time-outs. Propose a few extra breaks during the day to stretch or do jumping jacks.

Take it to the top. If more recess can't be added, speak with the Principal and ask about better teacher support and tolerance for normal boy behavior. If other moms of boys feel the same way, present your ideas as a group.

Parenting and Georgetown University has teamed up to launch Mom Congress, a brand-new program to help moms connect and advocate for positive change in their children's education.
Join the Mom Congress initiative