Sending babies/toddlers to preschool: a new trend? - Page 5 - Mothering Forums

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#121 of 124 Old 09-29-2010, 12:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Karamom View Post
I'm sorry I don't think my post was clear. I didn't mean that you should not ever be away from your children for more than an hour a week. What I meant was that I would not feel comfortable leaving my children in an institutionalized setting for more than an hour.
What is your definition of an institutionalized setting? Not setting any fires here, just interested.
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#122 of 124 Old 09-29-2010, 03:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Bluegoat View Post

I am not crazy about the use of the term school, because there is a trend toward lowering formal academics, and I think that is very negative, especially when we are already sending them to big school at quite a young age. I think it is better if everyone has clear expectations that early childhood learning is not "school' type academic learning.

I do have concerns about the way our day-cares are run. To really stand in for a family or village situation, I think small classes, mixed ages, caregivers that are consistent over several years, and lots of outside play in nature if at all possible are really important. But we tend to see kids grouped in same age groups; in bigger classes, even though the student teacher ratio may be good they group the kids and teachers together; a high turn-over among daycare workers; and outdoor play often seems to be centered on play structures.
I have read this thread with interest. Just up front, my DH and I both work full time. Both our kids started preschool/daycare/whatever you want to call it at around 9 months.

I wanted to talk about the question of what to call it. I think many parents call it school for a couple of reasons. First, sending your kids to "preschool" is regarded as good and helpful. Sending your kids to "daycare" is often regarded as neglecting them. Who wants to have it hinted that they are neglecting their kids?

We always say "school" and always have. We may have said it with a bit of a chuckle when the kids were quite young. On the other hand, we all leave the house in the morning for "school". My DH and I both work at a university so we are also going to school. And, I definitely regard what children do - i.e., play - as their "work". It's their "job" to explore the world doing the kid stuff: running around, painting, reading and chewing on books, learning how to get along with each other.

I quoted the above post both because of the school/daycare question and because that description of a family/village situation (mixed ages, lots of outside time, stable caregivers over time) pretty much sums up the "institutionalized" setting of our daycare/preschool.

Obviously each family should do what works best for them. But I do think we can help each other as women and as mothers by trying to reserve judgment about what other families are up to. Happy to see that that is pretty much the tone of this thread.
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#123 of 124 Old 09-30-2010, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by EVC View Post
Well, I do agree to some extent; however, I think the label "daycare" vs. "pre-school" is also sometimes based on the qualifications of the care providers. For example, dd went to "pre-school" starting at around 18 months. It was totally play-based and could legimitately be referred to as daycare. BUT the care providers were all trained in early childhood education, some with masters degrees and teaching credentials. They ALL held at least a BA and had completed a certain number of required education courses. For that--out of respect for the caretakers' training and qualifications as teachers--I believe it was referred to as a pre-school, rather than a daycare.

Just my two cents....
coming back to this because i toured a local "school" today that serves infants at 6 weeks through ready 4K programming. my daughter actually attended this school last year for a time when i was in school and now i'm thinking about putting her back in a few mornings a week.

i thought about your post as i toured. i get why they call themselves a school even though they too are play based. they aim for low 1:4 adult child ratios and usually meet them. this is almost half the ratio required. also, the teachers really are educators and not just child care providers. as a licensed teacher, this means something to me. it doesn't mean you have to be a licensed educator to be able to provide EXCELLENT child care, but i appreciate the additional credentials.
i've really appreciated this thread. it helped me think through my options very carefully.

hoping for a !
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#124 of 124 Old 10-01-2010, 02:14 PM
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In our state, pre-school starts at 3 years old. Anything younger than that is day care. I don't feel it helps me to judge what other people do with their kids, unless it is dangerous to the child. If a person needs a few hours a week to themselves and the child is thriving, so be it.

Mom to two lovely girls, 4 and 3. SAHW/M in need of sleep.
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