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Israel’s Kindergarten Registration

Israel’s Kindergarten Registration

This week we went and got Israel registered for kindergarten. It’s hard to believe he will be five this year! We have already been homeschooling him some, but decided it would be fun to let him go to kindergarten this year. It’s extra special because it’s the same school district Derick enrolled in over 25 years ago.

How did you feel when your first went off to kindergarten? Drop us any tips in the comments section below!

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80 Comments

  1. Katie

    What made you choose public school over homeschooling?

    Reply
    • Jordan

      Yay!! I’m a kindergarten teacher- and it’s such a wonderful experience for children. Don’t get me wrong, homeschooling is awesome, but I sure do love my job and the friends I share it with! He’s going to move it, you will too!!

      Reply
  2. Tina

    Aww! He was so excited, how cute. Big day for all of you!

    Reply
    • HeathEr

      When my first went to kindergarten my heart was so full. I had every emotion there could be, happy for a new adventure, sad he would be away all day, and he was so excited to go so it made me happy and sad too. I cried as I left but, it was just another stage to cherish. Cherish every moment of there childhood home with you. They grow so fast and you only have so little time with them. Rather public school, home school, or anything cherish it.

      Reply
  3. Kim

    Preschool is the same as kindergarten here in Australia. If he is 4-5 he would be in Prep (preparatory) grade and next year would be grade 1. I cried and cried because I missed her so much. I couldn’t wait for the end of the day to pick her up. It broke my heart if she came home with a sad story but talk to the teacher a lot and he will be fine. Praying for you, and him 🙂

    Reply
    • Jenny

      He’ll feed off your positivity and love school! I think it’s great for him!

      Reply
    • Jess p

      It’s bittersweet really. My middle child started school a couple of weeks ago (prep here in Australia) and my ‘baby’ started 4yo kinder (I think what you would call preschool?) so it’s all happening quick but, so worth it and he’ll love it!

      Reply
    • Shawna

      I dont mean to be rude but that is really not normal to be so devastated at your child going to school that you can’t stop crying. Definite co-dependency issues there.

      Reply
      • Margie

        Are you SURE you don’t mean to be rude though?

        Reply
  4. Lindsay

    We are similar to you in that we homeschooled before kindergarten, so for us, that year is mostly about learning social skills and developing a love for school. My recommendations are to go on all the field trips and get to know the teacher and school staff; pack more snacks than you think he’ll need (my son is in kindergarten right now and surprises me with how hungry he gets); take time to listen about their day and take every opportunity to teach them how to socialize in a Christ like way. Kindergarten is the best!! Enjoy it!

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Thanks!

      Reply
  5. Gina

    Oh please don’t sent your children to public school! Homeschool them. Public schools are indoctrination centers for evil. I call them farms for the elite. They teach even kindergartens about every kind of sex. Poor Israel. This honestly breaks my heart.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Thank you for your concern. We do try to prayerfully consider each step we take and not just run on autopilot.

      Reply
      • Nancy D

        As parent’s it is important to make decisions based on each individual child and family. Homeschooling, if done correctly is an overwhelming task. Public school will give him the opportunity to experience many cultures, traditions, and encourage social skills. Children need to experience different beliefs than their own. How else will they learn sound reasoning? Our country gives us freedom of religion, our Lord gives us free will. We must respect one another’s choices. I’m sure kindergarten will be a positive experience for him.
        I applaud your choice for you son.

        Reply
        • Tabitha

          If you go to a school board meeting, the school district’s focus is on ACADEMICS, not social skills. K-12 teachers do NOT teach social skills to their students at all. (Education reporter)

          Reply
          • April

            Tabitha, the social skills come from kids interacting with each other. Yes, it’s not taught like a subject, but social skills are definitely learned! Although, when I was in elementary school in the early 2000s, we did have a “class” ever so often where our guidance counselor would come in and play tapes of scenarios (all age appropriate K-5) about bullying and what being a good friend meant, good manners, and etc.. cute little cheesy tapes with good messages about interacting with your peers (good social skills to have)! And then we would all have a discussion and activity afterwards. Not sure if something similar is still being done or if it was just my area that did it.

            Jill- I hope Israel enjoys Kindergarten!

      • Laura

        Jill and Derick-you are fabulous, caring, dedicated parents. School will be a wonderful thing for your son and with the two of you guiding him through life he will thrive.

        Also-I’ve sent 5 kids to kindergarten and none of them have learned about “every kind of sex.” They have, however, learned about sharing, taking turns, reading, writing, and have experienced such joy as a result. Kudos to you for doing what is best for your family!

        Reply
    • Shawna

      Wow, what an incredibly disturbed comment. Jill, please ignore this woman, your son will love it and will be just fine!

      Reply
      • Katherine McKillop

        YEAH LADY…YOU MADE THE FIRST DISTURBING COMMENT!!

        Reply
    • Kate

      Wow this is disgusting, and so so so incredibly wrong.

      Reply
    • Kelly

      Oh goodness no.

      Stop fearmongering. It’s not helpful or conducive to what she’s asking for.

      Not to mention completely untrue.

      Look up state standards and common core on the school districts website. That will have true and accurate answers.

      On top of that, any concerns you have can be brought directly to the teacher.

      Reply
    • ML

      They aren’t teaching about sex in kindergarten. Pipe down.

      Reply
    • Lynne

      This comment is ridiculous. It’s not even remotely factual and I urge the commenter to seek help, spiritually and otherwise. No public school is teaching “every kind of sex” to kindergarteners.

      Jill, you’re making a wonderful decision that will benefit Israel in the long run. Please don’t let people who live in an echo chamber of hate and isolationist dogma make you second guess the choices you’re making for YOUR child.

      Reply
    • Ashley

      My daughter starts public school kindergarten in the fall as well and is so excited. I bet Israel will do very well!

      My husband I both went to public school and still maintain Christian values and a Christian home. If a family is active in their church, and models a Christian lifestyle at home and in their day to day life, the child will have those values instilled in them. There is nothing wrong with public school.

      For those who disagree, perhaps review Matthew 7:1-5

      Reply
    • Jess

      I don’t think they need to worry too much about this! Things are taught at an age-appropriate and developmentally appropriate level. They’re not teaching sex ed to 5 year olds.

      The great thing about kindergarten, imo, is that it’s a really great opportunity for children to begin to develop their social and interactive skills. It’s exciting to go on trips and have new experiences and make lots of new friends!

      Reply
    • Jack Robertson

      This is an odd statement, as the elite you refer to send their children to private schools, not public schools. I am not sure where you are getting your information on what is being taught in pre-k and kindergarten, but it is far from accurate.

      Derrick and Jill is was heartwarming to see how excited your son was.

      Reply
    • Diana

      This is so inappropriate. I can’t believe that you posted this on so,done else’s blog. You sound crazy. Jill, Israel will love school and make life long friends. Please don’t listen to this rant.

      Reply
  6. Melanie

    I loved kindergarten!! I learned so much and had so muxh fun with the other kids. I still remember learning the Pledge of Allegiance, “America the Beautiful”, left from right, how to line up and wait my turn, show and tell, and so much more. Kindergarten was the BRST!

    Reply
  7. Andrea

    You don’t need any tips for kindergarten! He looks like an excited, well adjusted little boy. He’s ready! Enjoy the next stage of life!

    Reply
  8. Kay

    I’m so excited for Israel! He’s going to make so many friends and hopefully have such an enriching experience.
    I just want to give you some encouragement, as I know some people have been less than supportive on your ig post comments. I was public schooled most of my life, as were many of my friends from my church. We weren’t ever swayed in our faith by the things we learned in school. I graduated high school, and then university, with a very strong foundation of faith in Jesus Christ (just like Derick! Haha), and I think being able to learn those critical thinking and studying skills, along with interacting with people from all sorts of different backgrounds actually helped me delve deeper into my bible study and derive so much meaning each year!
    Love and prayers for your family. 🙂

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Aww. Thanks. <3 -Jill

      Reply
  9. Tracey Mote

    Kindergarten 2033? was that a mistake Jill
    and good for you I,m sure Izzy will love making new friends

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      The year 2033 will be the high school graduation year for everyone who begins kindergarten this year. 🙂 Thanks. He is looking forward to it!

      Reply
  10. Regina Shea

    I cried when my oldest went to kindergarten. I was pregnant with my youngest and that just added to my emotions. I thought I wouldn’t cry since she was going to Christian school. I was so glad to pick her up from school.
    When it was time for my next two to start kindergarten we had already made the decision to homeschool since Christian school was getting expensive.

    Reply
    • Heather

      The first day is a little sad – but so glad we did! They learn so much beyond the ABC’s and especially when they need to learn how to get through challenges whether socially or just their own – learning how to trust the Lord can start very young! You’ve made a good decision! I homeschooled as well but each one went to kindergarten and then back in at 4th grade. It was a Christian school.

      Reply
      • Derick & Jill

        Cool. Thanks! -Jill

        Reply
  11. Angela

    I did fine when my oldest went to kindergarten but in August I won’t be she will be in Fayetteville for college. My youngest I bawled like a baby all the way home after I left his classroom. I can’t wait to see his first day of school pictures.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Aww! Yeah, I think both of those would be the hardest! <3 -Jill

      Reply
  12. melissa

    First day of kindergarten while all the other kids were crying my daughter turns to me and says ” Go home, this is my place” I was so shocked. But I left and everything was fine. She loved kindergarten.

    We home schooled on and off. School had challenges but so does home schooling. No way is better than the other because there are huge pitfalls to both.

    Your job as a parent doesn’t change because you send them to school You will always parent them. I hope he has a great experience and you Jill can be free to live your best life while he is there doing his best life.

    I never thought you would do this. But am glad you did. We home schooled and I wish we had just sent them to school straight through instead of chopping up their education.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Haha Sounds like she handled her first day ok. lol Thanks for the advice! -Jill

      Reply
  13. Liz

    I am very excited for you guys, especially you and Izzy. I would recommend to always be open about school and things that happen at school. I volunteer weekly in my daughters class and I love it. We were blessed with an amazing teacher that respects our values. Of course little one brought home some bad habits but we are able to overcome them and talk about things and I love hearing what she is learning and being able to see progress and now she’s reading and writing sentences before the school year is over. Save all the work and art and go on field trips with him. Be the room parent. The best thing is to be involved!

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Thanks! Looking forward to it! 🙂 Great advice! -Jill

      Reply
  14. Gigi

    Try to volunteer at the school.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Thanks! Yes, hoping too! 🙂

      Reply
  15. Theresa

    I LOVED kindergarten! Actually I loved my entire school experience. As a mom I have a love/hate relationship with the middle/high school because of how the culture is seeping in, but elementary schools are usually really nice at fostering good attributes. Hopefully your school will allow you to volunteer. Most will let you bring Sam along when you do. That’s a great way to really see everything going on and have a great relationship with the teacher. He’ll do wonderful!!

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Love this! Yes, it’s a great school. Thanks! -Jill

      Reply
    • Jess

      Regarding your middle/high school point – I get what you mean, and there are advantages and disadvantages. The biggest pro in my view is that they can begin to learn how to be with people who are different from them, which is something that most of us are likely to face in some capacity as adults. It’s becomes another social learning opportunity.

      Reply
  16. W Green

    Kinder was an absolute lovely year for my children! Wonderful teachers and wonderful memories. Soak up every minute and enjoy meeting the new moms and making life-long friends. After more than 50 years I still call these “kids” my friends.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Aww. Yes! Looking forward to getting more connected with other moms in the area too! 🙂

      Reply
  17. Alexandra

    Not to be mean but Israel is too tall for the high back booster he should be in a regular booster. As a first responder I have seen children hurt from the high back when they are too tall for it.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Thanks!

      Reply
  18. Michelle Gallina

    Isreal looks so much like his dad! So sweet!

    Reply
    • Jamie

      My oldest started kindergarten at a public school and is THRIVING. Had many worries and emotions like any parent but it’s been overall a great fit for all of us. She’s at a Title 1 school and is in the race minority, which is awesome. I say that because she’s picking up Spanish and learning about another culture from her friends, getting to experience things that she otherwise wouldn’t if we went to a school with mostly people in our same race, income bracket, faith, etc. It’s a great place and time to be immersed as a family in the world in a way that we can all learn how to love on people who aren’t the same as us. AND we have fabulous teachers and programs in the school. You guys are going to be fine and I’m sure you will all thrive once you get past the initial adjustment! ❤️

      Reply
  19. Sarah young

    Just remember it is harder on you than them! My oldest waved and strolled on so excited to be with his friends! My youngest cried but only until I was out of site and then I sat outside and cried. Lol. But they both had a blast! Enjoy all the fun moments!

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Oh yes! I’m thinking it will be the same here. lol

      Reply
  20. Anne

    Hi Jill and Derrick. That must be a hard decision you’ve had to make to send Israel to kindergarten as I’m guessing Jill’s family may not be too supportive. You are doing a lovely job with the boys and should be really proud of yourselves. Please don’t let anyone take away from that by criticising your choice for your boys. Israel will have an absolute blast when he starts but I guess Samuel will miss him! Much love and prayers from the UK.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Aw. Thanks. <3

      Reply
  21. Andrea

    It was rough when my first one first went to school. I cried a lot for the first couple of weeks. But then it was a part of our life and I cried a little less with each of the girls when they went. I will be crying alot this year too as he will be a senior.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Aww! Wow! Yeah, that stage will be lots harder I’m sure! I’m sure you’re super busy with everything surrounding the senior year this year!

      Reply
  22. meryl waters

    So exciting! Best of luck!

    Reply
  23. Heather

    I didn’t cry. I was excited for my twins. They were ready. I didn’t even cry when their younger brother started Kindergarten.
    What surprised me was how hard of a time I had when my youngest started middle school. I cried over that. To not have one in elementary school anymore was a hard thing for me.

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Aww, yes! I can totally see the youngest being the hardest! -Jill

      Reply
  24. Didi Keppel

    I’m like crying I’m so happy and excited for y’all! I was homeschooledK-12 and assumed I’d do the same when I was a mom. But my daughters 7&3 are both in public school this year and LOVING it! It’s so cool how God leads us to different paths in different seasons!

    Yay for following His plan and not letting fear rule!

    *hugs*

    If y’all feel like it I’d love to hear how God led you to sending him to school!

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Cool. Yes…true about the fear…good to keep things in perspective and pray for wisdom. We are excited! -Jill

      Reply
  25. Eleonora

    It is 39 Years ago thai I brouht my daughter to kindergarten. Yes, I was nervous , but It all turned out well. I always picked her up and listened to her stories. The good and sometimes sad.

    Suggestion
    – I kept her first writings, drawings. Also a picture of her and her classmates every Year until she went to college. I even have a wooden puzzle and a game she made, and many other things. she loves It!
    – perhaps you can volunteer by projects , always good .

    Jill and Derick, It is not easy to let a child go, but I think it is a good decision. Israël is a very smart young boy.

    Reply
  26. Eleonora

    And bless you

    Reply
  27. Marsha

    Derrick and Jill I’m so proud of you two for this great opportunity you are giving your son. When my daughter started kindergarten 20 years ago it was honestly harder on me than her. She’s my only child and was excited to make new friends. I had read her the book, “The Kissing Hand” many times over to let her know mama is always there even if she doesn’t see me. So each morning I always left her with a kiss on the cheek and an extra kiss in the palm of her hand, then closed her hand tightly around that kiss. When you read the book you’ll love the story. She never once cried and always went to school with her kissing hand. In fact many years later when I had to leave her at ORU in Tulsa 6 hours from me I left her with a kissing hand. Also another tip she didn’t like the school lunches as it took so long to get through the lunch line it didn’t leave the kids much time to eat. Plus that wasn’t allowed to make choices. I got a menu each week and she would eat on the days she liked their lunch the other days I packed her lunch. I always allowed her to help pick out things for her lunchbox but she was required to have options from some good foods, veggies and fruits. She loved a tortilla rollup spread with a honey cream cheese, filled with sliced turkey, shredded carrots sprinkled down the middle and rolled up tightly. I made these the night before wrapped them tightly and let them chill in the fridge overnight for better slicing to add to her container the next morning. I also froze Gogurts because it kept her food chilled but un-thawed by lunch for a creamy dessert. Derrick and Jill just remember what a blessing you two are in making a decision that’s best for your family and children. God bless!

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Such great tips! Thanks! 🙂 -Jill

      Reply
  28. Shawna

    Very good decision! I sincerely hope that it is not just for kindergarten. It seems cruel to allow them to go for one year and then force them to stay home again.
    School provides children with so many experiences and opportunities. I homeschooled my oldest two until grade 1/2 and the decision to put them in school was so much better. My oldest is in 1st year university, my middle is starting university this September and my youngest is starting high school. No regrets at all!

    Reply
  29. Shirley Murray

    Some loving advice from a much older Christian: He’s your child and you have full rights to decide, but my heart is deeply saddened to hear this, as I’m guessing your parents’ are too. The school Derick went to is NOT the same today, and unless you plan to attend with him every day, you will never see all of the dangers to him at such a young and impressionable age. God be with Israel.

    Reply
  30. Shelia

    I loved Kindergarten and my last baby will start kindergarten in August. So proud of you guys. He will have fun and learn new and exciting things. He is going to love telling you how his day went!! I survived public school, can’t wait to see the first day pictures

    Reply
  31. Michelle

    Our sons are the same age! We have enrolled our oldest for kindergarten and I was wondering his graduation year the other day.. 2033 doesn’t even seem real!! I was reading all the tips posted and there were so many helpful ones! My son has been in the preschool program at his school three days a week for the past two years. The environment will be the same, but I know going full time will be a big adjustment for him (and me!). He loves preschool, and I’m confident kindergarten will be the most amazing experience, just like it will be for Israel!! I hope he has a wonderful year! Plus, bonus, you get to enjoy some one-on-one time with Samuel! I have three babies and it’s special when they are all home and playing together, but it’s also wonderful to have each of them one-on-one. I’m looking forward to that with my middle and youngest. Time with my daughter while my big boy is at school and my baby boy naps. Time with my baby boy during kindergarten and preschool… and in the middle of the night! And time with my big boy at night after my littles have gone to bed! Best wishes to Israel and you all as you start this new journey!

    Reply
  32. Katie

    We’ve been greatly encouraged by Tim Challies and his blog has some great articles about things to think about when choosing education. I think he and his wife chose public school. Our family is homeschooling, but I appreciate how he emphasized that we can choose different educations routes as Christian parents. It is not the gospel. Blessings to you and your sweet family, Jill!

    Reply
  33. Kelly

    My oldest starts kinder this year. I’m excited for her!

    Both my kids are currently in preschool (one developmental for speech and OT) and the oldest because I am not a homeschooling mom by any means. It would be awful for all of us lol

    What works for us is being organized and the morning of. I make lunch, pack them up and go.

    But we do have to be up an hour before we leave. The extra time in the morning is nice and if we’re running behind, then we have a cushion.

    Reply
  34. lulah

    Yessssssss!!! Jill, Derick, you are doing Izzy a great favor by getting him in public school, where he will gain knowledge, yes, but he will also meet so many other kids from different backgrounds. He will learn diversity and will be able to show the love of Jesus to all friends of all walks of life. Don’t let the negative idiots bring you down—people with control issues and a cult mentality will try to discourage you, but you have a high road ahead for this little boy and for your family.

    Reply
  35. cheri

    It was so hard for me when my kids went off to school. They had to start early because of having some special needs, My son was going at 2 years old because he has autism. They loved the early years, so much fun. I kept them in school until about 7 years old then we home schooled them until high school and they both went back into the public school system, I still did home school type events and lessons even when they had pockets of public school time. Being a mom is one of the hardest jobs out there, then you throw in people always wanting to judge different choices we make as mom can be very hurtful. As long as your babies are happy, healthy and know they are loved you and your husband are doing a fantastic job. Beautiful little guys you have there, keep up the good work. God bless you and your family.

    Reply
  36. Murlann Vaine

    Jill I have been watching you on television since your family show began. I always knew you were going to make a wonderful mother just like your mom. You have you have two beautiful little boys and you are Derrick are doing a wonderful job as parents. Do you now live in Oklahoma> I never did know where you and Derrick moved to after you moved out of the big house of your family. Are you going to go back into midwifery again. How is Derrick doing with his schooling? You both look very happy and seem to be enjoying your new home and life. I do miss seeing you on Counting on but can understand why you are not on full time anymore.Everyone needs some kind of normal life . Take care and god bless all of you .

    Reply
  37. Laura

    One of the hardest adjustments my oldest had in kindergarten was getting enough to eat at lunch!! I didn’t even think about how we ate lunch at home— talking, taking our time and on no definite time table! When he got to school he tried socializing with his friends while eating and realized how quickly he ran out of time, and would come home completely ready to eat/snack! So— I would completely recommend finding out how long their lunch time is (typically 20-30 min range) and practice that at home— practice packing a lunch and making sure he is able to open things (containers, or clementines, pudding or jello cups those types of things). Yes, there are teachers and helpers but when they are helping a lot of other kids it can eat up time that they are unable to eat! Also, have them help clean up if they don’t normally, or prepare their lunch box after they are done eating to ensure they are as prepared as possible! This way they are prepared for the amount of time they get to eat and can get as prepared as possible so they are able to fill their bellies and still maybe have a chance to talk with friends too!

    Reply
    • Derick & Jill

      Great tips! Thanks!

      Reply
  38. erica jensen

    As long as you are active in this process he should do just fine. Now if he develops learning issues, you might consider private, where the classes are considerably smaller and the children get a lot of one on one attention. For my daughter who was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease age 2 1/2, public was not an option since they wanted to stick her in delayed classes even though there was nothing wrong with her mentally. She was actually advanced academically. Remember this: the teachers are extensions of you and you are extensions of the teacher. If you can not work hand in hand with each other, the child will loose out. You want the best fit for your child. Good Luck. Erica Jensen

    Reply

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