Kindergarten - Full Day or Half-Day?

Kindergarten - Full Day or Half-Day?

Length: 1430 words (4.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
Kindergarten - Full Day or Half-Day?

On August 30, 2000, the Maryland State Board of Education made a request for mandatory full-day kindergarten to be added into their budget for the fiscal year of 2002. The Board’s goal is to have full-day kindergarten programs implemented in all state public schools by the 2004-2005 school year (Maryland State Board of Education [MSDE], 2000). Making this change from half-day kindergarten to full-day kindergarten, they hope full-day kindergarten will help children benefit academically in the long run. Despite these goals, it is unclear as to whether full-day kindergarten is actually beneficial to all children.

The first day of kindergarten can be an awful experience. I vividly remember how terrible the first day of kindergarten was for me. I cried until I had no tears left, and I clung to my mom’s side for safety. After several attempts, my mom and Miss. Mariner, my kindergarten teacher, were able to coax me to enter the classroom. They provided me with several reasons as to why I would like kindergarten, but it was that final argument that school was only three hours long, which convinced me to “brave” it out. I didn’t have any disorders. I wanted to learn, and I was by no means antisocial. I was afraid of leaving my mom, and I was uncomfortable of changing my normal schedule. Fortunately, I loved kindergarten and after that first day there were no more tears. However, I was still preoccupied with the fact that three hours of my life were being taken from me. After the third week of school, I told my mom I had to quit all my other activities because school took up too much of my time. I laugh now at how precocious I was, but in the eyes of any five-year-old, three hours is a huge chunk of their time. I cannot even imagine what my behavior would have been like if kindergarten was a full day. After three hours of school, I was exhausted and a little irritable. This transition from no structure to six hours of structured school time may be too much for a young child to handle. This is why kindergarten should focus on acclimating a child to the school day by allowing them to wade into the “waters,” instead of throwing them into the “deep end.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Kindergarten - Full Day or Half-Day?." 07 Dec 2019

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Full-Day vs. Half-Day Kindergarten Essay

- Full-Day vs. Half-Day Kindergarten Which is more effective. Abstract: This paper gives a brief history of kindergarten; where and why it was created. It describes both full-day and half-day programs, examines the advantages, and disadvantages of full-day and half-day kindergarten, and comes to a conclusion as to which program is more effective in educating the young. Kindergarten plays an important role in the growth, and development of a child. It is here that children begin the foundation for the rest of there education....   [tags: essays papers]

Research Papers
2227 words (6.4 pages)

Should Alberta Implement Full Day Kindergarten Essay

- The world is filled with a boundless amount of academic facts and lessons. With a myriad of facts, as much learning time is needed. Full day kindergarten has children starting to learn earlier and for a longer period of time. A growing trend around the world, full day kindergarten is becoming more common within the school system. The question is, should Alberta implement full day kindergarten and what benefits and challenges does it have. Kindergarten in Alberta is not mandatory, but almost 95% of Albertan children attend kindergarten classes....   [tags: Term, Time, Classroom, Childhood]

Research Papers
1561 words (4.5 pages)

Essay about Graduation Day Is A Meaningful Day For Everyone

- Turning Tassel. I believe that graduation day is a meaningful day for everyone, we all have different thoughts, diverse emotions, and we are all excited to think we have accomplished a short-term goal in our way to attain our long-term goals. I graduate from Palm Beach Lakes Community High School. It was one of the most awaited days of my life. I was seated on my couch contemplating the contrast that makes a full-length portrait of a black woman with her afro hair, black eyes, and her white smile that showed her beauty; with the pale pink color of the living room wall....   [tags: Academic dress, Graduation, Pink]

Research Papers
754 words (2.2 pages)

The Effect of Full House on My Life Essay

- The Effect of Full House on My Life When I look back at my childhood, I see it as a highly colored, exaggerated version of what it must have been. Everything seems brighter, and bigger than reality allows. It’s the ideal “child’s world,” full of Barbies, dress-up, and playgrounds. But, if I try hard enough, I can remember the feeling of being there. The feeling of being small, and nearly innocent. Most of the time when I think of my childhood, I look back on two specific years, kindergarten and first grade, and the summers before and after the two....   [tags: Sitcom Television Compare Contrast Essays]

Research Papers
2474 words (7.1 pages)

The Day Of My Life Essay

- As a child, reading played a big part in my life. I read at least once a day for many years of my life. I loved having my mom or dad read a book to me, but once my sister was able to read I always wanted her to read me a book. The times when I loved to read the most was in the summers. This was because my mom would always sign my sister and I up for the summer reading program. After you read for a certain amount time you were able to check off the little picture. After you checked off ten of the pictures you could bring it into the library and receive a prize....   [tags: Educational years, High school]

Research Papers
2043 words (5.8 pages)

Jk / Sk : The Full Day Early Learning Kindergarten Program Essay

- For my final newspaper assignment I chose to do it on JK/SK using the document “The Full-Day Early Learning-Kindergarten Program”. The reason why I chose to create a newsletter for JK/SK is because looking ahead in the future, I can best see myself working with children in the early years starting from pre-school to kindergarten. I thought that I would benefit in the future from creating this assignment now for me to refer back to this assignment and gradually build up on this as I gain more knowledge....   [tags: Reading, Education, Teacher, Family]

Research Papers
1006 words (2.9 pages)

Glass Half Full on Technology Essay

- Glass Half Full on Technology Today, technology is simply everywhere. Nowadays individuals seem to go through withdrawals if they forget their cell phones at home, almost as if it’s a lifeline. According to a new study conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, the average young American, ages 8 to 18, spend more than 7 ½ hours a day using a smart phone, computer, television, and/or other electronics devices. There is no doubt that this statistic has risen over the years. In the 21st century, we are quick to judge the negatives of how the Internet and technology is affecting us, but should we....   [tags: internet, workforce, research, learn]

Research Papers
1207 words (3.4 pages)

Essay on Should Parents Start A Child For Kindergarten?

- Allowing your toddler to attend pre-school is very beneficial in countless ways. Four- sixths of all toddlers attend Pre-k. It will allow a toddler to develop both socially and academically. By enrolling your child in pre-school, they are learning obedience, sharing with others and starting a base that will help them later on in their future education. Many parents fail to realize that preschool greatly helps prepare a child for kindergarten. As a child start to grow more on an academic level, numerous of parents start to enroll their children in preschool to get going on a road to an academic success....   [tags: Early childhood education, Kindergarten]

Research Papers
1307 words (3.7 pages)

The Glass Half Full Or Half Empty Essay

- “Is the glass half full or half empty”, a famous idiom, used to determine whether someone is an optimist or a pessimist. Even though seeing the glass half-full or having great expectations in life is a good thing, there is one fact we cannot deny; the fact that the glass is also half empty. To be able to deal with life with as few disappointments as possible, one needs to be an optimistic person, who has a healthy proportion of expectations and “what if” attitude so that one can be flexible when fails....   [tags: Optimism, Pessimism]

Research Papers
757 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on The Television Experience: The Glass is Half Full

- The content of television shows today ranges from the highly probable to the highly bizarre. Characters are often put into scenarios that are either extremely realistic or totally outlandish. But no matter what the content there is something for everyone and the public keeps watching. In this day, a viewer can instantly switch from watching an hour long quasi-reality show that studies the lives of promiscuous 20-somethings on the Jersey shore to a 30 minute mockumentary that focuses on the not-so-monotonous life in the office to an hour long account of plane crash survivors and an island full of mystery....   [tags: Television]

Research Papers
1009 words (2.9 pages)

Related Searches

There have been studies that show that kindergarten teachers feel that full-day kindergarten has adverse effects. In a small mid-western city, 37 teachers were surveyed after the completion of their first year of the changed kindergarten schedule. Due to the increased hours, the teachers reported that their students had poorer social skills “… because of increased fatigue, irritability, and aggression” (Good). Although, the students were given more time to learn and excel the full-day experience was too long and overwhelming for the young children to handle; teachers were then forced to spend a good majority of the school day preventing irritability with “nap-time,” and reprimanding bad behavior with “time outs” ( Good). Because of this the goal of full-day kindergarten was not achieved because the teacher’s attention and activities had to be focused on other areas of importance other than educating, behavior.

Parents also had similar opinions on full-day kindergarten. In a case study of Minnesota’s Rusford Independent School district #34, parents observed that their children would come home tired and irritated. Children began complaining to their parents about being ill so that didn’t have to attend school (Towers). Six hours a day was simply too much for the children of that age. Instead of enjoying kindergarten, children were trying to avoid it as if it were some type of torture. This is a dramatic contrast to half-day kindergarten experiences, where children are excited to go to school because of the easy transition time ( . Another concern of many parents in the Minnesota Case Study was that they would have to get their child ready for kindergarten, whereas in the past there wasn’t a need to get a child adjusted to kindergarten because the half-day provided a smooth transition for most kids. One parent surveyed worried that an all-day pre-school would be necessary in order to get a child ready for the dramatic schedule change (Towers). Is the jump to a full-day too much too soon?

Full-day kindergarten may not even be feasible for schools to afford or provide. The execution of Full-day kindergarten requires more classroom space to accommodate all the kindergarten students that before were able to share the classroom due to the half-day schedule. And more teachers would be needed to as well (Towers). Full-day kindergarten may be too difficult to accommodate in school where enrollment is already on the rise and crowding is a huge issue.

It is unfair to assume that the implementation of full-day kindergarten is a poor idea. Many studies have provided positive results from the full-day programs; however, these positive outcomes are marginal and do not always follow across the board (Fusaro). In fact, the academic effects of full-day kindergarten have been ambiguous. Tests have been taken to compare the difference between full-day and half-day students, but the results varied so much that a positive correlation could not be drawn. Full-day kindergarten students did score higher on arithmetic; yet, there was no difference of reading skills between half-day and full-day students. Surprisingly, half-day kindergarten students obtained higher social skills, while full-day students seemed to regress (Fusaro). Rothenberg believes that the reason for these results is contingent on whether the child is ready to skip basic skills and move onto a more academic curriculum. And this decision as to whether full-day kindergarten is beneficial should decided for each individual child (

All-day kindergarten does benefit certain groups of children more than others. There are some socio-economic areas that would benefit from such a program. Several studies show that disadvantaged students as well as their parents would benefit significantly from the full-day program (Karwett). Full-day kindergarten helps lower income families in the area of childcare. By changing kindergarten to a full day, working families and single parent households are not financially burdened or consumed with providing additional child care services from their child. Not only it is cheaper for families, full-day kindergarten does help strengthen the skills of ‘at risk’ children (Towers). But, these children would still be vulnerable to the negative social skill results as mentioned earlier. With this information in mind, perhaps the Maryland State Board of Education should focus the program in areas where the children’s SES is below the national average, but even then full-day kindergarten would not resemble or yield the results it was designed for. Instead, full-day kindergarten would grow to be more like day-care; and therefore, it would not achieve the goals of catapulting five-year-olds into the education fast track.

If all goes as planned, Maryland Public Schools will find a new breed of kindergarten in the next year. The goal of this program is to prepare students for the “fast track” of education; yet, is full-day kindergarten is the best answer to this goal. And while this program may benefit certain groups more than others, it also puts the needs and interests of other groups to the side. An alternative solution to mandatory full-day kindergarten would be to establish programs where each student’s individualized needs are considered, instead of clumping them into one group.


Bowler, Mike. (2003, December 7). Full day helps kindergartners. The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved March 28, 2004, from the World Wide Web:,1,5236013.column.

Fusaro, J. (1997). The effect of full-day kindergarten of student achievement: a meta-analysis. Child Study Journal. 27(4), 269.

Good, L. (1996, June). Teacher’s perceptions of the all-day and alternating kindergarten
schedule. Elementary and Childhood Education Journal. 45.

Isaacson, Pamela. (2002, January 29). Full day kindergarten under review. News. Retrieved March 28, 2004, from the World Wide Web:

Karweit, Nancy. (1992, March). The kindergarten experience. Educational Leadership. 49(6). 82. 2000, August 31). Maryland State Board moves to mandatory full-day kindergarten. MSDE Press Release. Retrieved March 18, 2004, from

McLaughlin, Alexis. (2003). Is full day kindergarten the right choice? The Catholic Telegraph. Retrieved March 28, 2004, from the World Wide Web:

McMenamin, Jennifer. (2004, March 25). Foes of all day kindergarten vow to keep fighting. The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved March 28, 2004, from the World Wide Web:,1,470566.story.

Smith, Michael J. (2003, June 30). Mandatory Kindergarten is Unnecessary. Home School Legal Defense Association. Retrieved March 28, 2004, from the World Wide Web:

Towers, J. M. (1991, January/February). Attitudes towards the all-day, everyday kindergarten. Children Today. 20(1), 25-27.
Return to