Post # 1
So, I find myself in the very odd position of possibly getting to choose between having August or September birthdays for the girls… NICE guidelines say that the best outcomes for uncomplicated twins happen in planned births at 37 weeks (after that, mortality rates tend to go up, before that, they aren’t developed enough). For me, this means that if I haven’t gone into labour by then, I’ll either be induced or have an ELCS (the latter is unlikely as both are head-down and looking good for an attempt at a natural delivery). Weirdly, that week between 37 and 38 weeks is split down the middle–starts August 28th and ends September 4th–so any of those dates are possible.
I realise that even planned births don’t go according to plan, so they might not be born on the date I pick, but since I’ve got to pick a date anyway, I figure might as well take these things into consideration.
My question is, is it better to have an August birthday and have a bit more challenge in school, or a September birthday and be naturally ahead of the curve because you’re the oldest in your year? English schools are very strict about the Sept. 1 cutoff for who goes into school when, so we can’t really hold them back or put them in ahead later on… no pressure there, right!? I know that older children statistically do better in school than the younger ones, but I also know that I hated being one of the oldest in my year and ended up skipping two grades anyway. I was often very bored in class and felt awkward because I was a very tall kid.
What would you do? I always thought I’d go for the September dates, but now that I think moe about it, I wonder if August might be just as well in terms of keeping them challenged and helping them to avoid the teasing that comes from being taller and more mentally developed than the other children. Also, we’d be able to send them to nursery school (which the govt pays for 15 hours/week from age 3 to when they start reception) a whole year earlier. Nothing to sneeze at financially.
Post # 3
@UK Bride: I’d go August. While the reserach shows that September babies are more sucessful in life because of that extra time I am an August baby and I love being the youngest of my peers!
You get a whole year head start on life, I was still 20 when I graduated. I was classed as special needs at Primary School (undiagnosed dyslexic) but also I think because I was younger than the others. However I caught up, got excellent grades, did a science degree, got a touch off a first and am a happy, sucesfull person. I relish a challenge and am very independent. I think some of that comes from the schooling.
Downside is that I am tiny, always have been, so I was babied a lot at school, being the youngest in the year AND about a foot shorter than those the same age as me….I struggled to be taken seriously…..just made me work harder!
Post # 4
@UK Bride: I would go with September Birthdays to be the oldest in the school year.
Post # 5
I’m September and loved it – l was actually moved up a year at primary school, but dropped back to my proper year when i went to a much better school later on. If you and your husband would really support them with their learning at home then they shouldn’t suffer from being August birthdays educationally. Two of my nephews are July/August birthdays and they are doing very well at school.
One of the reasons i liked being older for my year was even things like learning to drive/going to the pub earlier than some of my peers, which might be things a parent would prefer them to wait for!!
Post # 6
I would pick September. They will do really well in school that way, especially if either (or both) of them is a boy.
Post # 7
I would go August. I’m an August baby and loved it. I think the challenge is good for kids and saving a year’s worth of childcare on twins is huge!
Post # 8
I’m confused about this August/September school year thing. When I was growing up you started school the year you turned 4, whether it was January or December of that year. So everyone in my class always had the same birth year as me and the january babies typically were the most advanced since they were the oldest. Have things changed or is this regional?
In any case I would probably choose september so they have a head start. It might be easier for them when they get to an age where there are a lot of projects/homework to be more independent or ahead of the curve since it will be more challenging (time consuming) for you to help both of them together.
Post # 9
I think September. You can hope they are super smart so the full year wont make a difference to their schooling but what If they aren’t? You want to give them the best chance possible.
Post # 10
I would go September if I had the choice. My mom taught pre-school (mostly pre-kindergarden, also some 3 year old class) for 22+ plus years and has made multiple comments about how much of a difference there was (generally speaking, not always, of course) in the older vs. younger kids. She says the advantage the older kids tended to have, at that age, is pretty noticeable.
Post # 11
I was an October baby and was younger than pretty much everyone in school, and my brother was a September baby and older. He ended up having to be held back a year in preschool because he wasn’t ready for Kindergarden, while I was so ready to move on. You never really know based on their birthdays, but how they are when they come out. You may have one twin that can advance and one that “shouldn’t”. So basically, I have no suggestions, but thought I’d throw my 2 cents in! 🙂
@Pink Asawa: She’s in England, so while the US cut off is generally December, theirs is September.
Post # 12
Honestly, I would also pick September also because of the birthstone. First of all i LOVE sapphires and second I despise my birthstone color, so I am envious of all September babies. I know this is probably a dumb reason but still, that is my honest opinion. 🙂
Post # 13
I’m a September 4th baby and I’ve had this discussion with a lot of people.
I was a whole year older than some of the kids in my class, and when I went to University I HATED it.
My friend who was an August baby, had a whole year ‘one up’ on my in terms of ‘life achievements’ by a certain age.
As a girl, I also hated that I was older than all the boys in my class (4 months is a big difference when you’re 13 😉 haha)
Also I think @bunnymama has an excellent point about a year’s worth of childcare for twins!!
Post # 14
@pmerr: Actually, a lot of schools in the US use the September cutoff dates too. I’m on the east coast and our school cutoff date is September 30. I grew up in Texas and they used those dates too. However, a lot of extracurricular sports teams will go by your birth year so then January babies have the advantage as they are bigger/stronger than the others usually.
@UK Bride: I would normally suggest going with the September birthday as I tend to prefer kids being older in school than younger. I think it gives them more of an advantage. That being said, I think your point about them being eligible for nursing school a year earlier with the August birthday is a pretty good reason too. I may lean more towards that option in your scenario to save the money, especially since you will be having twins so it would save you double the money.
Post # 15
@UK Bride: As a twin momma I’d go with August for the cost. If they but struggle due to being young, repeating a year won’t be a big deal. They’d be the older kids then.
I’m in Florida (U.S.) and our age cut off is the same of Sept. 1. I’m also a teacher.
Post # 16
@UK Bride: Wow that’s an interesting dilemma!
Hmmmm a couple things to consider:
My birthday is Sep 9th, and it almost always coincided with the first day of school – my first day of highschool was my birthday. Everyone forgets and no one is ready to celebrate birthdays yet because everyone is getting back into the swing of school again.
With an August birthday, it might be tough to catch people in town for a birthday party, because Summertime everyone is away at cottages or whatever. At least in September people are home. But, I got married the end of August and everyone made it.
Thinking about future birthday parties, I’d vote August over the beginning of September speaking from experience.