or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › Education › Learning at Home and Beyond › Does your child go to preschool though you'll homeschool later?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Does your child go to preschool though you'll homeschool later? - Page 2

post #21 of 32
With DD, I thought we would not do preschool. Most of them here are ridiculous admissions processes, parents ask totally ridiculous questions like "what colleges do your graduates go on to attend eventually?" (yes, really. I'm in NYC.)

But we happened into a program at a community Y where she was taking a mom-n-me type class and the teacher was the same for the "preschool-prep" group. 1 1/2 to 2 hours twice a week IIRC. So she did that for half a year.

Then we did preschool, 3 hours a day, 3 days a week the next year. Parent co-op, so we worked in the school, play-based, not academic based, they read to the kids, they play with sand, they make pictures around thematic topics like "pumpkins" or "cities" or "families" or "butterflies." She loved it and it was great for her.

We did pre-K at the public school the next year, as a compromise between DH and I. Pre-K was 1/2 day, but we got a taste of public school life. This year for K we homeschool. Next year we will continue homeschool. If we switch back to schooling, I know it won't be to public again!

We decided to do the same preschool DD went to for DS though. He'll be able to go for 2 years age-wise, 2 days a week, then 3 days a week the next year. It's just fun and social time, and not trying to be "school." I like that. They would say they loosely follow a Bank Street curriculum, or play-based curriculum.

I think of that particular preschool as more like the homeschool playgroup DD does a couple days a week now. Set group of kids, a "teacher" or "guide" to supervise as needed and set up activities you choose to do or not do, but time with friends takes precedence over academic in that setting.
post #22 of 32
Nope, we don't send ours out for preschool. I know some do, but our perspective is this: We won't be sending them to school, therefore they don't need to be prepped for it.

(Nothing against those who choose otherwise...this has been our reasoning)
post #23 of 32
My kids are 8,7,2, and a baby. My older kids have not attended preschool and my younger ones most likely won't either.

For us, we just didn't see a reason to send them off at that age.
post #24 of 32
If you'd asked me this 2 years ago I'd have said hands down no. Then I had surprise number 5 baby pop up while transitioning to teenage girls into highschool homeschooling requiring alot more demands on my schedule. I looked at my daughter who I knew should be starting a pre-k program of some sort and knew at that time I wouldn't be able to give it to her. I had co-op with the two big girls, dance, cheer, gym, softball, guitar lessons, and two babies in diapers. I knew that in the end I would put her pre-k on the back burner. And that would have been OK. But she wanted to start schooling so badly. So I consented and its been a WONDERFUL thing for her. Now my husband and I have planned from day one that she'll be out of private school after the second grade no matter what but until then if she's thriving and happy she's fine. I'm learning to educate each of my kids in what way best suits them. FYI I don't think my ds will ever make it in a conventional school system two days without the recommendation of riddelin so he probably wont walk in for day 1.
post #25 of 32
I posted this exact same question a few months ago. We really wanted DS to have some social time with the same kids in a controlled environment (by that I mean the same teachers, same kids, same space, same times, same schedule, etc). I also wanted him to have some time with an authority figure that wasn't me or DH. Ideally that would be a grandparent, aunt, uncle or even older child (I seriously romanticize multi-generational farm or even tribal style community, BTW)--but that's not feasible for us. DS (almost 3) is also highly social and precocious. At the playground today he ran up to at least 5 different kids, looked them square in the eye and loudly askes "Do you want to play?" 3 of them were 8 year old girls who wanted little to do with a 3 year old boy, and the 2-3 year old boys didn't know what to do--they were just playing independently or with their parent.

Anyway, I don't know what your reasons for homeschooling are, but ours are what stopped us from looking at preschools:

1) delayed (though I think its normal and everything else is accelerated!) academics. I want him playing, socializing, and discovering the world through self-directed experiences (esp. of nature) right now. We're Waldorf and Charlotte Mason inspired. The preschools were all too schooly and memorizy for me! Even the "play-based" ones had the walls full of computer generated flashcard style "learning" materials. It's called "print-rich environment" Blech. Everything in the school had a nametage (like each and every chair had "CHAIR" on it. Double blech! Just my opinion. No judgment, really!

2) Lifestyle stuff, like food and air quality and such. The state-accredited ones (or whatever it is) are required to clean with bleach around here--you could smell it! The very best place we found was in a building with non-opening windows. Yes, its only 6-9 hours a week, but it matters to me! The snacks, even so called "healthy" ones, are junk food to us--this was not a deal breaker, but just lumped in to the decision.

3) I just realized that I want him at home at this age. We do go out and he'll even do a music class and a gymnastics with me waiting in the lobbies come Fall, but that's just over an hour a week.

We are, however, considering looking at another one for next year, when he'll be a almost 4.5.

Good luck, I really do think there are benefits for all involved, IF it doesn't trample on your beliefs or goals too much (like it would ours, at least at 3)

(For anyone thinking it, we would do Waldorf except its an hour away in traffic, really pricey, and 4 days a week at 4--more than we want--and Montessori is 5 days mandatory!!!!)
post #26 of 32
We are toying with the idea of homeschooling (DH isn't sold, I'm really interested), and I just recently signed our DD (recently 4) up for preschool in the fall. I'm wavering on it, but for now it's only a $25 registration fee I'd be out if we changed our minds.

I chose to sign her up because the school was:

Very small (8 kids in her group)
Montessori inspired (well, I don't know if they use the word "inspired", but they didn't seem as strict as I have heard/read about)
Friendly - the teacher seemed nice, genuine, and like a good match with DD
Healthy snacks
Multi-age class
Offers crafts on a regular basis that I don't do as often
2 day a week option for her age

Other things that come into my thought process are that our area is phasing in full day kindy, so if DD does end up going to public school it will be 5 days a week full days, so I wanted her (and me) to have some sort of similar experience first (although this is only 2 days, 2 1/2 hours). My DD is really reserved, and it is good for her to expand her expereinces and circles of trustworthy people.

Things that give me pause: DD has experience with other people/caretakers through some stuff at the YMCA (a class and then swimming), a dance class, involved grandparents and aunties, and Sunday School/ kids time at church - so it isn't like she doesn't already get that type of practice. The school isn't super close to where we live. I am interested in homeschooling and I don't feel a need to normalize her to a classroom experience. It seems the kids signed up for next year are mostly younger than her, and I'd rather she be with older kids (she gets enough time with her younger brother anyway). DS is getting older (2 now), so I do have more energy/time to do more crafts and projects than I had for a while there.

I had wanted to sign DS up for the same class (he would love it and I could use a break from his energy level/some time to just let my brain be alone), but DH isn't on board and DD only is our compromise for now.

So anyway, those are some of my mental ramblings on what we are planning on doing.

post #27 of 32
My 4.5yo ds is in his second year of preschool and has one more to go before he is K age and we will homeschool. He begged me to go when he turned 3 and he really loves it. He is a very social creature! I agree with alot of what has already been mentioned. I just wanted to add about your concern with her already reading and having to do letter of the day type stuff...my ds is in the same boat. He has never complained about any of it. I think LOTD probably takes all of 10 minutes. I don't think boredom will be a problem as they present it in a fun way. Also, this year, ds is in a 3-5 classroom and I really like it. The teachers HAVE TO provide differentiation among the students because of the vast difference in abilities between 3 and 5yos. It is not Montessori, but I would recommend that set-up if you can find it. The only drawback for us is the undesirable behaviors he's picked up from other kids. I hope we can let those go once he's home full time.
post #28 of 32
I too, am toying with homeschooling my almost 6 year old for next year (he's in public kindy now, dh still not sold on hs idea). However, if we do move forward with that, I will still send dd, then 4 yrs. old, to preschool. She's there now and my older son went there. It's in the teacher's home, she is awesome, they do tons of art projects, which my dd lives for. She loves playing there with her friends, they play dress up and have a play kitchen and even though we have these things at home, dd just loves going to school and playing there as well. They go outside and do bubbles and sidewalk chalk. They learn letters and numbers and start writing their names this year and next year will begin learning a list of site words. Whatever. She is already reading a bit, just from exposure to the home learning stuff I do with ds1.

Plus the other thing is, next year preschool will be in the afternoon and that is when the baby naps so that could be my one on one time with ds1 to do homeschool stuff.

Going to preschool at Mrs. Teacher's home has been a neat thing for us to introduce homeschool to ds1, too. He already knows that some people go to school in a house, and some go to a building.
post #29 of 32
DS will attend preK in the fall. He'll tell anyone that he wants to go to preK. He loves the other kids and the fun activities. I like that he has an intro on how to function in a safe environment without a parent. He's also equally excited to come home for "real" school starting in K. Our experience with our DD was that preK & K were a great time that she enjoyed. 1st grade with being all day w/ homework and less free time just stopped our joy of school. Here K is all day so that's why we decided to forego that for DS as well.
post #30 of 32
DS1 attended a co-op play based pre-school for 2 years and it was awesome. All sorts of things were available to do but nothing at all was forced upon him and he basically played. He wouldn't even pick up a writing tool until his first day of kindergarten. It really is about socialization and it is very important. I would imagine even if you are homeschooling you will be socializing your child in some way and there are plenty of available options out there. We thought DS1 may have had neurological issues so we took the public school route in case he need OT. Turns out it simply wasn't his time for small motor skills yet. They did offer a play based kindergarten at the school as well. After having tried both worlds I can't wait for DS2 to start co-op next year and we are hoping to get DS1 into a hybrid homeschool because we want to be so much more a part of his life and for him to experience so much more than what even our excellent schools have to offer. So if he gets in he'll be going to school twice a week and doing the rest at home. The parents involved still get together outside of school for field trips etc... so it really is the best of both worlds.

I would not recommend just any preschool though. Montessori or something else play based is really so much better all around. Something with parental involvement is perfect! We have a large co-op organization here in Indianapolis and it's great. My husband and I participate in class as do all the parents to the kids get to know a lot of adults - moms and dads - and kids. I know there are pre-k programs where letters and numbers and writing are stressed but that's really not the point. yes, my son is ahead in math and reading and way behind in fine motor skills but any school should also account for that. Kids have so much to learn from each other at that age.

I really don't want my son to be assimilated into this 40 hour school week, it's absurd! I'd really rather him have a fuller life then sitting around and waiting for the next thing to happen at school. I mean, let's face it, they go to school and then come home with the homework so what did they actually do all day??? But, it will involve so many other classes available in the community and learning from his peers and so many other people.

Heck try it! You can always take them out.
post #31 of 32

I had concerns over this

You could always home school until Christmas and then take a look at your child's progress and your comfort level. So much can change from now to then. Where I live there are always openings. You can always put them in a program. Go with your gut. You know your child and their abilities than anyone else. I hope you have a local home school group to do activities with. I bet some of them have shared your concerns.
post #32 of 32
Thread Starter 
Wow, you all have been talking! So glad to see the posts on this. I am making up a list of pros & cons, and a list of questions for the Montessori tour on Wednesday. Meantime, SparklingGemini, you are the very closest to my line of thinking -

Originally Posted by SparklingGemini View Post

I have no interest in sending her to an academic preschool or sending her because I think she needs to be learning things and be ready for kindergarten.

But because my degree is in Child Development and my background is teaching preschool(and nannying), I have a hard time completely ignoring the potential positivity that comes from a more formal preschool environment.
I am not one to delay school-y stuff due only to age, but I am definitely an unschooler-type too. I think I can put it best by saying I don't want to miss a teachable moment just because DD1 is "only" 2 or 3 or 4 years old.

Before DD2 was born, DD1 and I did so much stuff together, and she did advance quickly, because I was there experiencing things with her and I could pick up on her inklings, and oftentimes draw her up to the next level. Vygotsky would say we used "scaffolding" really well together.

Now I feel like we're just getting to the basics - food, sanitation, family connection and rest - and the day is over. We WAH too so that's another essential requirement of the day.

Anyway, the Montessori tour is in two days, and I am a little nervous/excited. I have learned a few things about them -

-24 kids in a room with 2 teachers
-DD1 will be told her assignments for the day in general terms (i.e. do one life skill, one counting skill, one sorting skill), this surprised me and I'll ask more
-there is a camp at the same school over the summer, maybe the best way to try it out with no strings come fall
-half day or full day, our choice
-ages 3 to 6 in her room
-school is member of the AMS

I have a list of questions but feel free to let me know your list! I will not bring DD1 to the tour, but am free to take her along on a second tour if I think this is a real option. Wish me luck!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Learning at Home and Beyond
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › Education › Learning at Home and Beyond › Does your child go to preschool though you'll homeschool later?