Tuesday, October 23, 2007

to nursery school or not to nursery school....

William has never been to a daycare or nursery school, we aren't big into playdates either, but he has always played with a few kids regularly and that was always enough for him. Well those kids are older than him, they are now 4 and 5(he's 2 1/2) and attending preschools full day a few days a week. Lately I have been finding him pretending to play with those kids. He will come in and tell me he was riding in his truck with Ella or Jeremy (sometimes they are pocket sized and he hands them to me).

We are members of the YMCA and the local branch is a large busy one. the daycare room is small, sort of clean, and packed with kids from baby-10 or 12. i observed there once and just could not leave him there. too many kids, the staff were a bunch of very nice but very young girls. it would be far too easy to lose a 2 yr old in all that chaos. so we go to the Y but to do things for will, swim classes, kids gym, family swim... that was it.

my sister in law just joined this weekend and i promised her i would do some classes with her, i just had a second c-section and i don't really want mommy pooch for the rest of my life! i won't go if it's for me, but if i commit to someone else...i'll drag my sorry butt in. today i went to a different branch about 15 minutes away with my mom. she is a regular there and has brought will to their daycare room. she told me how great it was but i had never seen it. she wasn't kidding! it was bright, cheerful, clean, the kids were divided up by age, there was a ton of staff on, and they were adults! happy ,experienced, educated woman.

i had been thinking lately that maybe i needed to put will in a formal nursery school for socialization, and today at the Y i noticed he didn't play with the other kids, he just sort of did his own thing. at home i have seen him not so great at sharing and he can be bossy sometimes, other times he can play very nicely. i called a nursery school and i have an appt to check it out tomorrow, but the cost is pretty significant for us,even just for 2 half days a week. i think i would need to pick up an extra shift a week once back to work to pay for it. right now i'm on maternity leave so it would be an even bigger stretch...

but besides the money issue and my anxiety about leaving him with people i don't know (which i have never done for personal reasons) it would be a huge pain in the butt for me to drive back and forth to get him with a baby in tow, and i keep thinking that i never went anywhere for "socialization" i didn't have playdates, i played at home, with my siblings, cousins, by myself..and i'm fine. so is any of this even necesary or just what people seem to do with their kids now?

i'll go check out the school, but i wonder if i'm getting ahead of myself. maybe i should just arrange a few playdates with the kids we know that are his age, take a few classes at the nice Y and let him play with kids there...its not structured and educational...but it is social.....

i don't know what is best....what do you think?


Kristen said...

Hey Ali! Thanks for dropping by my blog:)
You have to do what you think is right for your family. My eldest did not go to preschool, he didn't really have many playdates or anything-he actually spent a lot of time with grownups. The only issue he had when he went to kindergarten was that he didn't know how to use sissors(cuz I wouldn't let him at home!) He was extremely well spoken and outgoing, he had no problem relating to teachers, other kids or even the junior high kids on the other side of the school. He even got up to mc a school assembly. He had been given a scentence to say and then he just started ad-libbing and cracking jokes. He also taught himself to read by kindy.
My second did go to preschool and loved it. He loved playing with his friends there a couple times a week, had a blast.
He was definitely no farther ahead than his older brother when he started school. In fact he did have a few social issues at 3/4, ie scratching kids in the gym daycare when they wouldn't share with him.
I think if preschool works for you, you have the time and money to take him, then by all means take him. It can be awesome! I wanted to send my 3 year old this year cuz I thought it would be nice for him to get out and I felt I didn't have a lot of time to do preschooly things with 3 others at home. I didn't get around to it. and he is doing just fine playing with his sibs, occasionally having a playdate(maybe once every 2 weeks) reading stories with Daddy and playing board and computer games.
It will not hurt your child either way. It sounds like you are making a wonderful environment for him to learn and grow at home. He will do fine whatever you choose. Preschool can be terrific, but so is home:)
sorry for this novel I have put in your comments, lol!

Kristen said...

Oh! I forgot to say, that the side by side playing, rather than playing with the other kids is completely appropriate for 2. It is not really til they are nearing 4 that they start to play WITH other kids.

Badness Jones said...

Only you know what is right for your family - and playing with imaginary things isn't a bad thing. I think it's really important for them to be able to play independantly as well as with other kids. My daughter went to Montessori for a year and a half before starting JK this year, but only because I had to work and I needed it as daycare. As long as your son is with people who love him and interact with him - as it's obvious you do - he'll be fine. Whether he attends nursery school or not.