Deborah - posted on 04/13/2009 ( 3 moms have responded )
My daughter is 2 1/2 and will turn 3 at the end of the summer. She is set to start a preschool attached to a church 3 times a week starting in the fall. The program is more socialization then academics but they do have curriculum and my daughter is leap years ahead of their curriculum but they do it in such a way that I am hoping she finds pleasure in it and isn't bored. BUT I will be on the look out for signs of it not being a proper fit and have been looking into alternative schools.
One thing that is important to us is foreign language and teaching her Spanish right now. (We chose Spanish due to our location and how it will be more readily available in after school programs.) Due to the importance of it I started looking into Immersion Programs in our area and came across a Spanish Immersion Program which we went to an open house this weekend. I was impressed with a lot of it. They are academically more advanced then the public schools in this area. Their curriculum is about 2 years ahead of the PS. All their teachers are certified in Mexico and the textbooks come from Mexico which are big check marks in my book. BUT as advanced as they are it really opened my eyes to how advanced my daughter really is. She would be in their 3 yr old program by age but she already knows all of the curriculum taught to 4 year olds and about half of the kindergarten curriculum. The challenge of this program for her would be learning the language but she quickly picks up Spanish words in her English world so in an immersion environment I fear that she will absorb it a lot faster and then in a matter of a few months she will really understand them and the curriculum will be too slow for her. I did talk to the Director and she said they could evaluate her at the beginning of the year and see if they need to move her to the next level but I really don't know if that is evaluating her Spanish ability or her understanding of the curriculum in the English context. And if they decide she needs to be in the 3 yr old class due to her Spanish and she masters comprehension before the year she would clearly be stuck in that class b/c they only have 1 class per age and their classes are full with waiting lists.
So my question is ... has anyone gone done this path with their gifted child and if so was it a good decision?
My plan is to send her to the social program but have back ups ready in case it isn't a fit. So I am also going to look into a French Immersion Montessori school b/c if it is a true Montessori it might allow her the foreign language component that we desire and be able to keep up with her pace.
Also, we did sign her up for the summer program for Spanish Immersion and hopefully that will give me some sign of how quick she is to absorb it.