Well, I wasn’t gonna 7QT today in favor of spending some QT with the hubs. But, seeing as he is asleep on Ellen’s floor, and I am alone down here with a bowl of frozen grapes, let’s do this.
I might be the only person who finds myself hilarious. Also, why did I spend so much time making this?
I don’t know why I didn’t think to ask you guys this:
So, the super awesome preschool in our neighborhood is having open enrollment soon for next year. Ellen will be three, so she will be eligible to enroll. I don’t know how school works. Is preschool at three something I am supposed to do? Is it just a luxury and not a necessity?
There is also a 1 day/week Catholic program at our church. Should I do that instead of preschool, or do I really need to get her into a preschool program as well?
We *hope* to homeschool our kids if my sanity allows it. BUT, as for preschool – if this is something we are supposed to/should do – we are thinking about outsourcing that year.
Can you see how I have this all together?? HALP.
I’ve got a sweet little Valentines post over at CatholicMom.com today – I can’t remember what time it will go live… Anyway, go over and get some of the lovin’. If it’s not up now, it will be later. I’m talking to all you moms who don’t have anything planned for your kids today. I was right there with you, and now I’ve got your back. Last minute parents, unite!
When I picture myself arriving at Edel and meeting all my gals, I am pretty sure that it will look like this:
I’m giving away a copy of Sarah Reinhard’s Catholic Family Fun. If you’re like me, and you love resources (doesn’t that word bring you great joy??), then you’ll love thissun. Resources – seriously so romantic. You think I’m kidding.
Linking Up with Jen “In-Print” Fulwiler
Yes, pretty sure it’ll be lots of squeals and hugs come July. And I’m investing in the best waterproof mascara money can buy.
Mandi @ Messy Wife, Blessed Life says
Ok, so Lucia is only just newly 2, but we don’t plan to do anything for preschool. To me it just seems like $$$ out the window. I do like the idea of more socialization because I probably bore her to tears by now (not really, all she wants in “mommy, mommy, mommy…”) and she doesn’t have any siblings to interact with, but I’d prefer to do that in the form of cheap rec classes – dance and gymnastics and art and the like. We do plan to home school, but even if we end up not, I think I would wait until she were at least in kindergarten to put her in “formal schooling”. I think too much “school” too early is not good for the little ones (there are studies out there that show that kids in countries where formal schooling starts late – like age 6 – are actually better off academically, mentally and emotionally in the long run).
We did the three year old year of preschool for my first born, but have decided not to do it for our next three. It really was just play time, that cost us a lot of money. If you have a different way for them to get together and play with kids, I think you are fine. Three is really early. The one day per week at church program sounds great to me.
Meg F says
My oldest 4 went to PreK at 4. That seemed soon enough for me. (It also could be because as they each turned three I had another new baby and it made more sense for what was left of my sanity to wait.) My now first-grader did not do well with it (autism + sensory issues + lots of people + even more noise = what were we thinking???) and is now homeschooled for that and other reasons. We were going to send our youngest (who is now 3) next year for PK4 but have decided against it. The school where he’d go is becoming a victim of its own success – classes are maxed out at 20+ kids and I just don’t see the point in paying 6K for that kind of classroom when I can homeschool him at home for next to nothing. I might feel differently if I didn’t already have two homeschoolers (my high schooler came home this year because his school closed) and was going to have a third coming home next year (same reason). I’m already insane, so what’s one more? LOL
So glad you’re asking this question about preschool. I have no idea either, but want to see what others have to say.
My son didn’t go to PreSchool until 4. It is totally optional to send your kids to Preschool at all, much less at a certain age. Mine didn’t spend a ton of time around other kids (only child, only one other kid with him all day at daycare, and not many “play dates”) so we felt strongly that he needed to be in preschool. Going at 3 would have been better, but we couldnt afford it until 4.Since I couldnt stay home with him I felt a good preschool was necessary for him to learn social skills and to learn the basics (he was with a family member all day that didn’t have the ability to work with him on things like letters and reading/writing, numbers what have you, so it all got done in the 2 or so hours I got with him at home after work- AKA the worst time to ever try to teach something to a kid.
If I were planning to homeschool I would say preschool is probably unnecessary. Like Mandi says, get the kiddos into other groups for interaction etc.. Or, that church group sounds perfect, IMO
Cat W. says
I plan on sending my kid to public school and am pretty sure we’ll do the 2x/week preschool when she’s 3. (I’m hoping our church will have their 3yo program up by then–they start at K right now.) But in reality, I think it’s optional. Free play is the most important during those younger years. That 1day/week thing sounds pretty cool, though!
As for the last thing we did as a family, um, does eating dinner count? We had homemade cookies after, so I think it counts.
Sarah @ Two Os Plus More says
Totally think preschool is optional. And your #2 tying with Kelly’s gems over on her blog.
Practicing my #5 dance now (pretty sure it’ll be easier with the lil guy on the other side of my womb).
Molly (@MollyMakesDo) says
My 3 year old is in “preschool” as a part of his occasional daycare, if he wasn’t in that I wouldn’t bother right now. 15 years of elementary- 12 school is enough in my book. We do lots of story time, and other work when were at home, he follows basic instructions and is as polite as a 3 year old can be expected to be, so beyond that I don’t see a reason for a formal preschool so early. Just let them be a child (in my humble opinion).
Andi at Bringing the Sunshine says
Both of my kids have done preschool, though not the “elite” one in the area. For Sarah Kate, it was a way to get her moving and provide a respite for me. For Nathan, it provides structure and socialization early on so that he will (I hope) be better prepared for school when the time comes. And of course it’s a break for me that I desperately need. So I’m in the yes camp, but my situation is a bit different than most. :)
Preschool is optional. However, I’ll say that if you find a sweet little preschool in your budget, your kids will love it and enjoy the social-ness of it all and learn a few life skills such as sharing, caring and all that. (a good chance to practice it outside the home) Our boys are 14 and 16 and they STILL remember their preschool and how much fun it was. Blessings!!
Jen P says
Well Jenna, we’ve done it all! Older three did Montessori (small, Catholic, old school Montessori vs. make your child into a genius by reading at the age of four Montessori). I can’t recommend it enough for young ones. But along came the other three, and the cost of Montessori and Catholic elementary together became quite unmanageable. So now, we send them to a small Catholic preschool at 3 or 4 yrs, depending on the needs of the particular kid (and MOM’s needs). And it has helped to make homeschooling the older ones less chaotic.
For example, our 4th child, a boy, went for 3 yrs, spending a couple of hours 2-3 days each week with the lovely, soft-spoken British teachers who were able to help me see that my son was NORMAL and wonderful. But our 4 yr old daughter is going just this year because her temperament is easier and she basically did 3yr old preschool for herself (with a few tools from Mom). Next year, I will sadly leave the little Catholic preschool because we are bringing a hybrid Catholic school program to a church you know that will be preK- 12th grade. So all of our children will participate. Nutshell: every child is different, every season is different, Mom’s needs change frequently. Btw, I hope also you have a community of like-minded Catholic moms you can get with regularly! You need that! God bless!
I think preschool is totally optional – Ellen’s no dummy and I think she’d probably pick up on all the academic things she’d learn in preschool just at home, but if it’s in the budget and it’s not too much work to take care of drop off/pick up (and be on an enforced schedule that’s not necessarily on your own timeline), I say go for it! It never hurts to visit at least, right?
If preschool weren’t:
1. So ridiculously expensive
2. So academically unnecessary (John Paul’s been reading since he was 26 months old sooooo I’m pretty sure he’s good…)
3. Such a pain to have to *get* kids to
We might have considered it. But having to have everyone up and dressed in time to drop off in the morning AND having to plan naptime and errands around pick up time? Not okay in my book.
Let me give you my daughter’s experience. She is pregnant with her fourth. Five years ago when her first was 3 years old he was an only child and shy so she thought putting him in the Mother’s Day Out program at her church would be a plus as far as socialization. It is 2 days a week, 9 am to 2 pm. He learned the alphabet, numbers, how to write his name, they had outdoor play time and indoor craft time. PLUS, he came out of that first year potty-trained. But she only put her next child in the program at the advice of the speech therapist due to a speech delay. She is now 4 and still attending and was also potty-trained as they are all taken to the restrooms together. I know that it’s important for children to be children and that they probably don’t need formal schooling so early but these two absolutely LOVE going and it’s only 2 half days a week. They have so much fun and so my third grandchild, who is a year behind her sister, will probably also be attending the next session.