My sister came home last night and a discussion was started about Kindergarten and what kids will need to know by the end of the school year. She happens to be a preschool Montessori teacher and was commenting on one of her kids going on to a mainstream, public Kindergarten. The parents expressed concern over what is expected of their child next year and how it compares or does not compare to the type of schooling he has received so far.
I am a bit appalled at the long list of things these kids are required to know before even entering kindergarten. All of the rules and stipulations. What happened to simple socialization and learning the basics from a teacher? All for parents to complain about all of the volunteering and money dumped into it? What happened to kids playing, learning to share, and learning from one another? When did it become a thing that a kid has to exit kindergarten knowing how to write a novel and have basic algebra down? Okay, maybe I’m being drastic but hear me out.
My sister and I have had several conversations before about public schools versus Montessori teaching and other methods. I can tell you from mother to teacher there are a lot of things we don’t agree on. Slowly I have come to realize that my husband and I are really going to have to start sorting out our feelings on an education direction with our little one. Quite frankly I find it to be a bit overwhelming on what to do for those first few years.
It’s not that I’m even worried about her keeping up in school. Our pediatrician has had conversations with us about Cora being a few steps ahead of the curve for her age. Our doctor has just suggested we keep up not with her age but with where she is developmentally. So if she needs to do things a 24 month old does instead of her 18 month age, then do that. So we do that. But does that mean we put her in the early preschools that start as soon as 2 years of age? And what does she gain out of it that I can’t just do for her at home? OR why the heck do I even need to do preschool? Again, why can’t we continue our learning and socialization at home and with her part-time daycare till its time for kindergarten? Why are parents so hell bent on preschool?
Don’t even get me started on the discussions I have had with my public school teacher friends. I get why people start homeschooling.
I guess it comes down to this for me. I’m not ready for the world of schooling yet. Your kid is only little so long and only at home for so long before they go out into the big world. Hell, my own mother kept my brother back one extra year because she wasn’t ready to send her baby to preschool. I’m not so sure what the hurry is and what preschool offers my kid that I can’t provide in the real, everyday world. It seems childhood gets shortened a little more with each generation and I want her to enjoy it as much as possible. Once she starts school, that is it. It is the same as becoming an adult and getting your first job, exciting day one but then you realize that is it, there is no going back.
I honestly didn’t think I would have so many all over the board feelings about this. I honestly thought I would send my kid to preschool when the time was appropriate and get on with it.
So what are your thoughts and experiences?