Thursday, September 29, 2011

Too Cool for School

Last night I went out for dinner with some of my girlfriends from Isis. All of our kids are around the same age, give or take a couple weeks, and we have known each other since they were 6 weeks old. Now they are 21 months, and some have actually started going to "school" this fall. I say "school" because it isn't really school that they are going to but a program of sorts that is much like a daycare. Yes it is called school, but come on, these kids aren't even potty trained yet, so it is really a glorified daycare. Not knocking the idea of this, but just the fact it is called school...but back to my point!

I overheard part of the table talking about their plans for the fall of 2012, and changing of schools, and putting in applications. And then one friend turned to me and asked "what are your plans for M for next fall? What schools are you applying to?"

And I responded "she is going to the school of Mama J."

In all seriousness, I haven't given it a seconds thought! She is only 21 months old now...still a baby in my eyes. While there are some days that I would love to have a little bit of free time, I don't think I am actually emotionally ready to drop her off three days a week and leave her with a group of strange people!

I am totally blessed with a very cool, easy-going kid (90% of the time) and I actually love spending my days with her. I can pretty much get done everything I want to do (save getting my haircut, which I do on nights or weekends) when she is awake, and when she is asleep I get stuff done around the house, catch up on TV shows, etc. I am not saying my girlfriends don't have easy kids, because they do, I just don't feel like I NEED to have her in school at this point in her life...but come next year, my tune might be changing.

All of my girlfriends that have their kids in school either just had their second child, or will be having their second in the next month or two. So for them it is a different situation. Having their kid in a program of sorts makes sense for their sanity, and gives their kids a little independent time away from brother or sister. Hopefully by next fall our family will have increased in numbers by 1, and I will be ready to send M out on her own for a few hours, a few days a week.

But, how do you even decide where you are going to send your kid to school in the first place? I did a Google search today and came across 100 pre-schools w/in 5 miles of my house! How do you know which ones are good? And at which ones someone will beat your child with a ruler? I don't even know how to begin this process, and would love some direction/advice from my readers and Mamas.

What is the normal amount of money to pay for pre-school?
Did you all start your kids in school at 2.9 years old? Or did you wait?
How many days a week do you send them at first?

Help me Mamas!

10 comments:

  1. Thank you! Great post! I am in exactly the same boat as you, having no idea where to start the search, which schools are good, if my child even "needs" school soon,... It is daunting.

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  2. Other than the Mama sanity saving aspect, I think the big reason I've heard to put toddlers in "school" is for socialization. From reading your posts, it seems like you do a great job of getting out and about with M, introducing her to different experiences and people. I guess that brings me back to the first reason above - Mama sanity saving. We could go on and on about that one! I know people who have started out with 2 mornings/week. In your pre-family addition phase, perhaps that would be plenty.

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  3. We moved H into a "preschool for 2s" class at daycare when we moved here - prior to that she had a nanny in NYC. I know it's slightly different since we both work and had to have her in childcare, but I will say that once she was in that "school environment" she just blossomed verbally and socially. Our nanny was great and they spent all day with other kids at the park and on playdates, but something about the classroom environment really had a positive effect on her. And she loves it. She never cries at dropoff and recently started getting upset at PICKUP!
    But, every kid is different and every school is different and if you're both happy I really don't see what could be wrong with keeping her home longer!

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  4. C goes to "school" two full days a week. We both work, so she needs daycare, school, whatever you may call it, on the days her nana cannot watch her. She loves school and I think the structured day with other kids her age (2.1) is wonderful for her. Negative side is she takes short naps at school, so she tends to be very overtired on school nights and sometimes the next day. I think she may go 3 days a week when she turns three next year.

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  5. Can anyone address the question of where you found your "schools?" I am feeling lost as to where to start in finding a preschool. Thanks!!

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