K is about to start kindergarten. In preparation for this day we started him last year in preschool in the out of district school we’d been hoping the kids could attend since purchasing a house in 2011. Initially, we searched for homes in the school’s area but our budget and needs pushed us out of district. We knew there was a high demand and found out that by enrolling K in preschool he’d be guaranteed a spot in kindergarten and from there would be able to remain at said school. What can I say? I’m a planner.
So, although I am a stay at home mom, K went into half day preschool. I wrestled with this internally. How strange it seemed; to send my kid to school when state didn’t require it, it cost us money and he could just be home with me. The pros out weighed the cons and in hind sight I can’t even believe I had any questions about sending him to preschool.
- Social Interaction. We know that kids’ being around other kids is important to help our kids become social but I truly could not have imaged how amazing preschool was for K and learning how to appropriately interact with kids and adults (that aren’t mom and dad). He forged some amazing friendships even at this young age.
- Academic Growth. One of the most obvious reasons to proceed with preschool is academics. Starting formal education early can help set your kiddos up for success later on in school and life in general. (Plus, it’s really cool to see your 4 or 5 year old sound out words!)
- Respect for Education. Starting schooling young can instill a love and respect for learning and education. School becomes important to your child and this can stay with them through their whole life.
- Daily Structure. Try as I might, I could never give my kids the daily schedule and structure preschool does. Sure, we kinda, sorta stuck to a routine but in preschool kids learn to know what to expect and thrive on that structure.
- Independence. With 20 kids in their class kids learn a bit of independence which is crucial for a well adjusted child. Side note: prep your kids by letting them open their own snacks; I never thought about this and it was a shock to K when he was expected to be able to, or least attempt to, open his own.
BONUS: K’s time in preschool gave me some one on one time with my youngest child. Before K started school it was an extremely rare occasion to be alone with Baby G. While K was thriving and growing in school I was able to focus a bit on Baby G and really see his personality form.
We loved what we saw in this school and how K has blossomed so much that when we realized there was a 3 year old program at the same school we looked knew Baby G would benefit, too. When he finally potty trained (that’s a whole other story!) we called to enroll him. Remember how I mentioned this school is well rated and in high demand? Well, unfortunately, Baby G is waitlisted for the one classroom of 3 year olds. Luckily, we aren’t in a huge rush, so we are just waiting for a spot to open up. When I spot opens up I know I’ll have the natural reaction to be torn- but I know it’s the right choice for us and good for the kids.