As a parent of a kindergartener, you know how important it is for your child to thrive in school. One way to ensure that your child is ready to thrive is by asking their primary care physician to answer a few questions about your child.
Here are the questions you should ask your family medicine physician and how to use the information to help your kindergartener succeed in school.
Question # 1: How does your child's height and weight compare to their peers?
A kindergarten classroom can be a chaotic learning environment. To assimilate into this learning environment, your child's teacher needs to be aware of your child's unique physical strengths and weaknesses. At your child's physical, your doctor will measure their height and weight. If asked, they can then compare your child's physical measurements with those of their peers.
This comparison can be very important. For instance, if your your child is significantly shorter than their peers, you may want to email or discuss with their teacher(s) sitting near the front of the room so that their view is not obstructed by their taller peers. Additionally, if your child is significantly heavier than their peers, you can discuss with the staff members responsible for monitoring them during lunch to help remind them to practice healthy eating habits at school.
Question # 2: How strong is your child's posture and bone growth?
Children of traditional kindergarten age are growing faster, proportionally, than at almost any other time of their life. During these nascent stages of growth, their doctor can glean unique insights about them. Two important measures of your child's growth is their posture and bone growth. By asking your family doctor to assess your child posture and bone growth, you can help their teachers help them thrive physically and academically.
For instance, if your child's doctor notices that your child has particularly weak posture you can convey this information to their teacher(s). The teacher(s) can then allow your child to do more standing activities and help them sit correctly when seated. Additionally, if your child's bone growth is showing abnormalities, your doctor may prescribe dietary supplements or suggest dietary restrictions. You can communicate this information to your child's teacher and/or the school nurse to make sure that the doctor's suggestions are followed at school.
Kindergarten is a trying and exciting time for parents and children. Synergizing the efforts of your child's family doctor and their school's staff can help establish a learning foundation that can benefit them for life.