I would love some input on preschools for next year! My son is 4. Last year I looked at bilingual preschools for him, but all that I found wanted the kids to go 5 days a week. I thought that would be too much for him (he would have started at age 3 after only having a once-a-week parent-participation school before that). So right now he is in a local play-based school. He seems very comfortable there and I am really excited because he usually has a tough time with transitions and doesn't always participate in play classes, etc.
This year I found a bilingual montessori that has the option of 3, 4 or 5 days a week. I was thinking of moving him over for next fall, but I'm hesitating. I know he likes his current school and feels comfortable there. I'm afraid that if he doesn't like the new school he might just shut down. I became more worried when I signed him up for soccer and he wouldn't participate at all. So I feel like it might not work to move him, but on the other hand it would be a great opportunity for him to learn another language. The school is bilingual Mandarin/English and since I don't speak Mandarin very well at all, the school can offer him something that I can't. I visited and the teachers seemed very nice, so they may be able to help him adjust.
The other issue is that the school is much more academic than his current school. (Personally I don't think preschools should put any emphasis on academics). He would be joining the preK class, so he might be behind if they are expecting him to write letters, etc. I don't want him to feel like he is behind or not as capable. Since he is starting now, he would only get one year of bilingual school until he moves on to public kinder.
I am also considering sending my daughter to the school. Her personality is much more outgoing and she really wants to go to preschool! But I'm not sure if 3 days a week is too much for a 2 year old (She would turn 3 a few months after class started). I know it wouldn't have been right for my son, but her personality is so different it is hard to tell!
Anyway, I hope some of this makes sense! I have the flu and it is hard to think straight.
I should add that we also have a tutor come and play with the kids while speaking Mandarin. Right now she is coming once a week, but we could do it more often if they kids aren't going to a bilingual school. So they will be getting Mandarin exposure in any case. I'm just trying to figure out how to help them become bilingual while still attending to their emotional needs/first educational experiences.