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I have two DD's 3 and almost 2. I have no plans to send them to preschool and may or may not start them in school for kindergarden.<br>
It seems even in my API group that I am the odd one out. I feel like I am the only parent that is not sending their toddlers to preschool. It just seems to me that it is so unnecessary. I am not anti-preschool I just think I can do just a good of job for free <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br>
So, someone I know was wondering if there had been any studies done about the benefits of preschool or whether it showed that going to preschool was beneficial in the long run or if kids that entered school at kindergarden did just as well or better.<br>
Any thoughts? Links?<br><br>
TIA,<br>
Keri
 

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Well, I always thought the benefits were pretty clear. Two or three hours of uninterrupted time alone - chance to run some errands, catch up on housework, or just fart around! Great substitute for naptime!<br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
oh, you meant for the kid?<br><br><br>
No seriously, my aunt teaches at a church-based preschool and those kids thrive on it. The variety, the interactions, the little plays they put on, glue sticks, scissors - today they were doing the letter "P", so they had a pajama party!<br><br>
You betcher bippee I'm signing mine up!
 

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I personally never went to preschool (and neither did my older brother). We both started our schooling in Kindergarten with no ill effects....we actually excelled.<br><br>
As for my kiddos....Dd LOVES <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"> preschool. She's 4.5. She actually went for half of the year last year also (started when she was 3.5) and loved it then too. Ds age 2.5 gets a bit jealous when "sissy" goes to school. He really wants to go too. We'll probably start him next fall, when he's 3.5. Dd only goes 3 days a week, for 2.5 hrs each day. She loves everything about it...the social aspect, the learning aspect. I think it's very healthy to expose kids to other kids around the same age (outside of immediate family) and other trustworthy adults, in this case the teachers.
 

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" We find that prekindergarten increases reading and mathematics skills at school entry, but also increases behavioral problems and reduces self-control. Furthermore, the effects of prekindergarten on skills largely dissipate by the spring of first grade, although the behavioral effects do not. Finally, effects differ depending on children's family background and subsequent schooling, with the largest and most lasting academic gains for disadvantaged children and those attending schools with low levels of academic instruction."<br><br>
from Katherine A. Magnuson, Christopher J. Ruhm, Jane Waldfogel<br>
NBER Working Paper No. 10452<br>
Issued in April 2004<br><br>
Read Miseducation: Preschoolers at Risk by David Elkind<br>
Talks all about how learning academic skills too early in life is developmentally inappropriate and can actual harm children developmentally.<br><br>
In my state pre-K programs for 4 year olds started being funded by the state in 1993. Over $1.15 billion has been spent over the last 10 years. Test scores have not changed.<br><br>
Finally, I don't want my kid learning how to say "you're a stupid-head" just yet...<br><br>
take care<br>
elaine
 

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No pre-school here, dd is almost 3, many of the moms I knew signed their dc up as soon as they turned 2. I really don't see the point in it.
 

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I feel that it all depends on the kids as to how he or she will benifit from preschool. I was totally anti-preschool when ds1 was little, he would have not handled it weel at all, therefore I thought the whole idea was horible. He started publi kindergarden with no problems and has donme fine since.<br><br>
But now the ds2 has just turned 4, i wish I could find a preschool that I could afford(and that was worthy). He could really use it! dd is going to be 2 this month and for me it is way to soon to tell how I feel about it for her.<br>
I cant help with any studies, or info, but I can say just go with how you feel. That is what being a good mom is about, not what others are doing and how you keep up.<br><br>
We didnt even have a kindergarden around when I was starting school, I jus tstarted 1st grade right after I turned 6 and it was great.<br><br>
I am working on finding some homeschool materials good for prek and kindergarden for ds2 right now. that doesnt mean i will always homeschool(i am sure i wont) but it is the next best thing for us, and story time at the local library <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I teach K and I strongly agree:<br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Furthermore, the effects of prekindergarten on skills largely dissipate by the spring of first grade, although the behavioral effects do not. Finally, effects differ depending on children's family background</td>
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I think it's important for almost kinders to have some kind of social experience w/o Mom but preschool sure isn't necessary, IMO. My 4.5 year old goes to gymnastics instead.
 

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My mom has been a preschool teacher for 15 years. She doesn't think it's necessary at all, but does think that it is good for certain kids and living situations. Some of the situations where she's found it to be beneficial for the child are if the parent doesn't interact with the child much at home (think tv as babysitter), or if there is a new baby (so the mom/baby can have one on one bonding time and the preschooler can have something that is his/her "own"), or if the parent just needs those few hours to regroup so that they can be a better parent the rest of the time, etc etc etc. She feels very strongly that preschool should be about the social interaction and play, not about the academics. Bottom line - I think you need to look at your family/life situation and figure out what would be the benefits and disadvantages to you. And then if you do it, find someplace that matches your values.<br><br>
I have no idea if we'll send dd or not. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I am a Preschool teacher and I love it!!!<br><br>
The secret is, finding the right school-- the pp's are absolutely right, preschool should not be about academics at all. It's about social interaction and learning how to behave outside of the home when Mom's not around.<br><br>
You probably could teach her the "skills" as well, if not better, than the teacher can, but unless she is around other kids her age a decent amount of UNRESTRICTED time (this is key), I would send her. Group activities like sports, dance, etc, are good, but the kids don't really interact. Half of our 2 1/2 hour day is spent with the kids in "structured play"-- they choose an area to play in (eg art, house, blocks, sand, etc) and have to stay there, but that's the only restriction. We encourage them to make choices, but the primary objective is for them to interact with each other.<br><br>
There have definitely been studies done about the benefits, it's just too late for me to go looking <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> Every kid in my class LOVES coming to school, and that's really what it's all about. (plus like the pp said it's great for Mom too <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> )
 

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Not all preschools are busy cramming factoids into the little kids' noggins. It depends on what the parents are demanding.<br><br>
I went to preschool. "Bunny Hop" was its name. We colored, watched Popeye cartoons, and I helped the teachers clean the tables, that was my favorite part.<br><br><br>
One thing on reading skills --- I went to a parochial school for most of first grade, then switched to a regular public school when we moved. And I had to visit the Principal's office to get reading tutoring for the last 6 weeks of the school year, I was significantly behind.<br><br>
By the end of third grade I was reading at the 6th grade level. By sixth grade, I'd maxed out the tests, so apparently I was near college level (but I know I didn't really understand or appreciate everything I read).<br><br>
I find the kindergarten reading expectations silly.<br><br>
But a pajama party to celebrate the letter "P"? Now that's cool!
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Group activities like sports, dance, etc, are good, but the kids don't really interact.</td>
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Gosh, I really have to disagree w/this as a blanket statement. I think that some sports are incredible at building team playing and good sportsmanship.
 

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Personally I think alot of parents send them because it gives them a chance to have some free time and brag about where they go to preschool. (I am not referring to people who have to work). I have taught preschool for years and I see good and bad especially depending on the age. I would never be convinced that putting a child younger than 3 1/2 benefits from preschool except in a case where the home environment is negative. Most have anywhere between 9-18 kids in a class and even if there are two teachers there is no way in my opinion that the children have the individual attention they deserve. Even in very good programs there is too much time having to be spent on getting them fed, pottied, put cots/mats out, put cots/mats away, have snack, clean the room, redirect children who are hitting or running around the room etc. The children rarely have the freedom to go and have some peace and quiet. Being home with a good mom who holds, cuddles, etc is sooo much better. I do think children should have ample opportunity to be around other children in order to learn social skills. But preschool is not required for that...there are play groups, library, ymca etc. I do think older preschoolers 3 1/2-5 often enjoy preschool and benefit from the activities, art etc. BTW kindergarten is not like it was 20 years ago the things learned K then are expected to alread be know beforehand now.
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>BusyMommy</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Gosh, I really have to disagree w/this as a blanket statement. I think that some sports are incredible at building team playing and good sportsmanship.</div>
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Oh yes, absolutely... but at such a young age like preschool the kids ALSO need an opportunity to interact in their own way, not just by doing class activities together. Simply saying "Oh, she gets peer interaction at Dance class" is not enough, IMO.
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>GeezerMom</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;"><br>
But a pajama party to celebrate the letter "P"? Now that's cool!</div>
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<br>
I taught K last year and we did this <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"> It rocked.
 

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Hi All!<br><br>
Great thread. I am also thinking about preschools for my DD- she's 19 mos. now but next fall she will be close to 3. I am the only Mom that I know that isn't quite sold on the idea- it's great to hear others perspectives. I am a SAHM & she's my only child- we go alternate sessions to Gymboree, Storytime, music class but also enjoy plenty of "goof off days" which we both truly love. I keep thinking she has the rest of her life to be on a schedule.<br><br>
Thanks everyone for your posts.<br><br>
Miasmommy <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/heartbeat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="heartbeat">
 

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Former K teacher here. I think preschool is totally up to you. If you think your child would enjoy it and you found a nice program, I say go for it. If you think it is too much structure for your child and you spend time with them at home doing interesting stuff, don't sign up. Preschool does not make geniuses. Preschool does not cause children to be academically gifted. In my experience, children who went to preschool had an advantage only in that they new about school routine, not that they were willing to follow it or better at it than those who didn't attend, but they knew it. Many kids love preschool, it can be really fun, but it is not going to make a break a childs learning experience (well I guess a bad experience could break it, but I'm sure a parent could turn that around)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>miasmommy</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I keep thinking she has the rest of her life to be on a schedule.<br>
Miasmommy <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/heartbeat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="heartbeat"></div>
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This is my point. My older two children went to preschool, more of a Mother's Day Out really and I taught there as a sub once a week so I am not anti-preschool in any way. My younger son actually went to Montessori preschool when he was three and I had to retun back to work. I feel it provided him with tools but there was very little focus on academics. Learning is great, especially when done in a fun way but I think many parents expectations are set too high and that children are expected to sit still in a classroom and listen to the teacher, line up in a straight line etc at 2-3 years old is just asking too much <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> If they go K-College that is 17 years of school, plenty if you ask me.<br><br>
It's just that so many parents feel that it is necessary. Parents stress that they have to get their three year old potty learned so that they can get in two years of preschool before K.<br>
I am comfortable with my choice not to send my daughters. However, I can see if we had another child how it could be advantageous for them to have preschool to be with their peers when I am having to focus more on a baby.<br><br>
We do some things through our local YMCA, my three year old goes to religion class for 75 minutes a week and I plan on doing more activities including art classes so that the girls have more interaction with children their age. They are only 16 months apart and I feel that is a huge advantage for them socially.<br><br>
It's just nice to know that my toddlers aren't the only ones not being formally educated <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
Keri
 

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My oldest three did not go to preschool, mainly b/c we simply could not afford it. Last year, I discovered a free, 2-day/wk preschool program which is operated through our local Vo-Tec school. It's actually like a "learning lab" for the students who are studying early education ... they teach the preschool, under the guidance of their classroom instructor. It's beneficial for everyone.<br><br>
DD absolutely <b>loved</b> it ... it was structured, but not in the strict "classroom" sense; and mostly involved learning through play. And it was only 2 hrs per session, so there wasn't any separation aniety or overtiredness.<br><br>
Had I known this program existed, I would have sent all my kids (it's offered for 3 and 4 year olds but I'd only have sent them when they were 4). It's great for social skills and just getting out on a regular basis - I do tend to hole up at home for long periods of time.<br><br>
Having said all that, I think that preschool is a very personal choice based on a family's individual situation and needs. For instance, if I were working full time, I might choose preschool over day care for my 4-yr old. But because I've been a SAHM for so long, I have been able to teach my children many of the skills they would learn in a preschool setting.
 

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T goes to a co-op preschool... 2 very experienced teachers, 1 (often 2) parent(s) there every day. We rotate tasks. The focus is *NOT* academic, but it's also not "free-form". All of the activities have a point (work on gross motor skills, fine motor skills, communication, social interaction, etc.). They do a *lot* of art and music. When he was 3, it was 2 mornings a week; now that he's 4 (going on 5), it's 3 mornings a week. It seems to be just the right amount--not overwhelming, not overly "busy". It has been a very good (and affordable) experience for the entire family.<br><br>
Around here, kindergarten is much different than it was for kindergarten for most of us parents--for one thing, they're expected to know how to read by the end of K. I don't think K preparedness necessarily has to happen via preschool or "pre-K", but *something* has to happen.
 

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it seems like it really depends on your child and your future plans...<br>
my ds would not tolerate preschool at this time (we dropped out of gymnastics because he was supposed to do it without being able to see me), but we plan to homeschool, so getting him used to regular seperation isn't an issue. If we were going to send him to school, it would be a different thing. here kindergarten is all day - that could be way too much for an attached kiddo to tolerate without any regular seperation before k.<br>
we are starting "homeschool preschool" in january... nothing academic, just a time (20 minutes or so three times a week) where we sit down and read, rhyme, do finger games and songs (90% of the point is to get me to learn more songs and games, the other ten percent is to practice being on task - for both ds and I). DH pretty much demanded some schooling start now. And, just like everyone said, we get lots of interaction at LLL, the library, play groups, etc. (and no pressure to play without seeing me!)
 
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