who has or has not sent their child to pre-school?

Kelly - posted on 06/28/2010 ( 140 moms have responded )

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I have a four year old that I may or may not put into pre-school this fall. I'm looking for feedback and opinions/advice on children starting school as a kindergardner. I didn't attend pre-school and I feel I turned out fine education-wise. Did your child fall behind by not going? Or did your child lack much needed social skills because of not going? HELP!

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[deleted account]

I have done both sides of the coin when it comes to sending children to preschool versus not sending them. Personally, I guess it depends on the child and parent, and also the preschool available. I'm a stay-at-home mom and have a lot of time to give to my children, so I was able to choose. I have sent three of my children to preschool. I sent my oldest because I was concerned he needed more socialization with other children his age. My second child was sent for the same reason. I discovered some things about the preschool later I was not pleased with and since it was the only one I could afford at the time, I chose not to send my third and fourth children. I taught them at home and was very pleased with their readiness for school. My fifth child needed to go to developmental preschool due to lack of talking. My advice is to find out how much the preschool expects children to learn by the time they finish and see if it measures up with what your public school expects them to know for Kindergarten readiness. Also, see if your child is ready for such a structured environment- are they able to zip their coat, toilet training finished, etc. . .(some preschools are not very tolerant of children who need lots of help with personal skills). Hope this is helpful.

Jessica - posted on 07/08/2010

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hi I have a son going to 1st and a son going to preschool.. Now my soon to be 1st grader did not go.. He did not go beause of my work schedule. I was very nervous about him starting kindergarten last year because he did not go. He did absolutely fine...He was not behind any of the other kids. I am putting my 4 year old in because I now am a stay at home mom who works perdiem.. So he has the oppertunity to go.. I think he will benifit greatly from going.. The choice is yours.. In kindergarten the goal is to get all the children to know their letters and start reading "site words" at least, He also learned certain math skills.. As I said my kindergartener did NOT go and he was absolutely fine.. YOU know your child.. pre-k will help but it is NOT necessary.

Jennifer - posted on 07/08/2010

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My children went to pre-school--Chasity it helped educationally by the time she was 4 she could count to 10 in spanish, to 100 in english knew her colors, shapes and was a social butterfly! Nathan it helped socially and some educationally, He's always been a momma's baby and it helped to get him around children his own age. If not willing to part just yet try to find a play group, sunday school class, or something of that nature to develop social and artistic behaviors...good luck

Heidi - posted on 07/07/2010

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All 3 of my children have attended preschool. My oldest attended a self contained special needs preschool and recieved many services that I couldn't provide myself or could afford. He has autism so he recieved speech therapy and occupational therapy, he is 8 now and is still a little behind but it would be worse if I didn't send him. My middle son came out of Pre-K writing and reading already which made Kindergarten a little easier for him. And my youngest is 4 years old and has attended preschool since he was 2 because I work at his preschool as a teacher. I find it is a very valuable experience for the children if you find a good one that doesn't only focus on play but also on academics as well. Kindergarten has changed alot since we were kids. I had one teacher tell me that it is what 1st grade used to be. I think that it is a personal choice though. As long as they are learning and are happy that is what is important.

Rebeca - posted on 07/07/2010

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My daughter was an only child so I feel that sending her to pre-school really helped to be socailly prepared. She was already shy and I feel that had she not had a class room setting prior to starting school it would have been scary for her but because her pre-school class was ran like a kindergarten style class she was well prepared. On the other hand my nephew has not attended pre-school and he has a hard time socially and with new things so I see pre-school as a good thing.

Kathy - posted on 07/07/2010

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Our son was in day care for 2 years and it did wonders. He was a little delayed socially and developmentally when he started, and they worked with us to help us get him started on the help he needed. By the time he was ready to start sr.kindegarten, he had adjusted very well. He went to kindegarten in the mornings and day-care in the afternoon until he went into grade 1 full time and too old to stay in day-care. And the ECE staff at the day-care were just wonderful

[deleted account]

Neither of my kids have went to preschool, they don't offer that here in our state unless you pay 125 a week, or you are considered low class and then of course it is free. I am a stay at home mom, and we couldn't afford to send them to regular daycare, but we was over the limit for free preschool. My oldest we did hold back, b/c he was having a few problems, but my daughter is already prepared and she is ready to go. She will start this upcoming year. Here they look at it as if they went to preschool then they go ahead and send them on to 1st if they haven't ever been to preschool then they want to hold them back. Which I think is wrong. The teachers don't take the time up with the kids, like they did when we was in school, they expect them to already know everything before they enter into k5 here. But I would just say go on what you think is better for you, and if you can afford it. Good Luck on your decision(:

Gail - posted on 07/07/2010

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Is this your only child? If it is, it might help to get a little extra socialization. i.e. sharing toys, taking turns those kind of things. Not to say you haven't taught those things. My kid's pre-school teacher was also my Aunt, so it was easier for me to feel comfortable sending them. And even though my 4 kid's are very close in age and we share everything, it was nice for them to make some new friends before the 1 st day of "real school". It helped them to know that they already had some friends.

Tina - posted on 07/07/2010

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I sent both mykids! For my son, for the meare reason to meet new friends and have some independance from me. He loved it!!! And did great as a kindergartener. My daughter i HAD to for she never let me "teach" her!! She only learned form her preschool teachers!! She will be in Kindergarten and wiol only practice with me only because her new K teacher told her to practice during the summer.
Now, on the other hand, i have know other little ones who ahve not have preschool, and they have adjusted just fine. One had a little trouble at the beginning but she obsorbed the info just fine. I think each child is different. You know your child and if she is learning w/ you, she shold be fine. Preschool s god for both socially and educationally ;)

Marsha - posted on 07/07/2010

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both of my kids have been through day care and preschool since both were 9weeks old. i think being in preschool gave both of them the knowledge they needed to succeed in kindergarden more so than if they had not been taught. what is expected is kindergarden is much more than when i was there. they are now doing first grade work and even though i worked with my two (i have a 10 and 5. year old girls) with reading, letters, numbers, both of mine enjoyed going to school and learning from different teachers and having lots of friends to play with. my 5 y/o just finished kindergarden and will be going into first grade this coming school year. i would place ur 4y/o into preschool just for the social atmosphere and learning environment. he will enjoy it and be ready for the structured day of kindergarden the next year and it won't be a shock of work, centers, rules and things like that.

Pat - posted on 07/07/2010

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As most people stated, it depends on your child. My daughter just turned 6 and did not go to preschool or kindergarten. She is an avid reader (probably at a a 2nd grade level) and is very social. We would have put her in school if we didn't feel that the daycare we sent her to was meeting those needs. My only concern was sending her to first grade without knowing anyone but since she is going to a Montessori school that is not in our town, she would have had to deal with that anyway (we didn't want her to have to do it twice). Best of luck!!

Beth - posted on 07/07/2010

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I think it depends on how you work with your child, and how many experiences you expose them to outside of home. None of my kids went to preschool, and none of their K teachers, when asked, noticed a difference, othen than a daughter's short-term curve of learning to stay in her seat. I read to them constantly, greatly limited TV, had workbooks available but didn't really push them to do them. We belonged to MOMS Club, attend church, and have active relationships with extended family, so they had plenty of interaction with others.

Robin - posted on 07/05/2010

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EVERY child is different and you as a parent need to look into what your best option is. We sent our son to pre-school and pre-K and have never regretted our decision. For gr.1 we were told he is getting bored so we went from englsh to full french immersion and he is still top of his calss. My number 1 reason was can it hurt...NO. Your child will just have oppourtunities that they may not have gotten anywhere else. Your child will make more friends, have more social oppoutunites and they will thrive in almost any positive environment you put them in. Good luck in your decision and let us know what you decide and how it goes.

Karen - posted on 07/05/2010

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It actually helps them socially and gives them a leg up on there learning skills..other than that not much more going on> it really all depends on how much time is spent at home reading and writing and doing activities with structure

Kelly - posted on 07/04/2010

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My son is very intelligent and he didn't attend preschool. However, I feel it's a personal choice, its something you should determine for your child as well as yourself. If you feel it's the best option and he or she will benefit from preschool, you should . In a way I regret not sending my son, but he is very socially awkward and at the time it was easier to keep him at home.

[deleted account]

From a 53 year old mom, teacher, homeschooler in the past, public school for my last child who is only 8: Preschool is only necessary if you are working and just using a babysitter, OR you are staying at home but are not the type of parent who talks and reads and teaches mini-lessons all day to your child. Research shows that children whose parents provide a language-rich environment are way ahead of the game when entering Kindergarten. LANGUAGE RICH means that you use many many GROWN UP words that you may feel your child does not understand. It is very natural for some of us to use baby talk and simple words to help our children understand and not be confused, BUT research shows that we should MIX IT UP. Give instructions in simple language, but intersperse words that are more difficult so that your child will have an opportunity to make CONNECTIONS from what he knows to what he does not know. This is the primary brain work of vocabulary building. Research is also showing that many of the children's TV programs are NOT a good replacement for language-rich activities. Children's TV programs can be used for short times for entertainment--as long as you choose SLOW animation and content that you approve of (FAST animation is another research subject that shows bad results in brain development). But the language of children's TV is not a high level of vocabulary. SO, to summarize: if you are working all day and use a babysitter, then find a sitter or a low cost (or high cost if you have the money) situation where they do part babysitting and part preschool. If you are a parent at home who finds reading and cooking and painting and talking and explaining and exploring annoying and frustrating, then find a preschool that your child can attend every morning. It will give you a break, help your child, and make the time you DO spend together more enjoyable and positive. NOTES ON TYPES OF PRESCHOOLS: 1. choose one that has caretakers who love children and talk all the time and don't believe in harsh structure and discipline which STIFLES all your child's questions and exploring (I had a really bad experience with my 3 year old for one month at a highly acclaimed "learning" preschool in my town). 2. VISIT AND WATCH for at least 2 hours to see the TONE, and ATTITUDE of the caretakers, and watch how they handle the frustrations of getting children to take naps. I have seen some BEAUTIFUL examples at a low-income church preschool and a non-profit center for teen moms: caretakers put on music, gave each child their favorite stuffed animal and blanky, and sat IN THE ROOM with the children as they fell asleep, the teen mom center even had caretakers that worked their way around the room to read a short book to each child and pat them on the back, so every child knew that his turn was next and laid quietly until the caretaker got to him. It was amazing to watch. You can learn a great deal about Child Development from a good center that is run by a director who loves children, is invested in the BRAIN DEVELOPMENT of the child, AND believes in positive reinforcement and behavior control that is not based on punishments and lectures. ONE FINAL NOTE: as parents our biggest fear is how do we know if they are treating our child badly when we are not there? We know that generally, our children cry when we leave, but when is that crying not normal? VISIT OFTEN THE FIRST FEW WEEKS. You will be amazed--you can actually FEEL the atmosphere from just watching all the children as you visit regularly, and combine that with the way your child is behaving and what you know about your child. For example, my 4th child was a very outgoing child, and I had left her with friends, or grandma, or teen sitters that we knew well, and she was really happy usually. Sometimes she cried when I left, but the next time I said--"Maria is coming today to play with you while mommy goes to work" her response was excitement. We decided to put her into a real Preschool because I wasn't home enough to read and teach her like I did my other children, and I could already see that she was not ahead of the game in academic skills like my other children were. My nightmare experience with the first place we chose went like this: I visited before I registered and was impressed by the facilities and the learning goals. I sat in the room that would be assigned to my child and was slightly concerned that the teacher had strict rules that the children followed quite wonderfully. But at the same time, my husband and I knew that our child was a bit spoiled and not well-behaved because I was not at home, she was very agressive, and her babysitters always gave in to her. Here was a very structured environment and it was only 2.5 hours per day. Since it was a strange atmosphere, I expected her to cry when I left her for the first week. By the second week she was still crying A LITTLE (she was not a screamer in front of people). By the third week she was SCREAMING IN THE CAR BEFORE WE GOT THERE. I took time off of work and sat in the class and i began to see that all the children were extremely stressed out in trying to obey all the rules. After several visits, the teacher relaxed enough thinking I approved of her (I was always very nice to her), and I got to see first hand how she handled a child who disobeyed. I took my child out IMMEDIATELY. Anyway, I hope this helps some of you--I have so many years of experience that I want to share it sometimes with younger moms.

Karie - posted on 07/03/2010

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I think this depends on you, your child, and the area that you live in. Some schools still do half day kindergarden while others do full days. We live in an area where kindergarden is all day long. I think it would have been a disadvantage to my children if I didn't start preparing them by sending them to preschool. I am a stay-at-home mom. My kids are almost always with me. Sending them to preschool got them used to being away from mom and dad even though it was only for a few hours a couple to days a week. But I think it made the transition to kindergarden much easier on them. It also got them used to a stucture outside of mine. And of course they all learned the alphabet, counting, shapes, colors, etc. Plus the extra socialization without mom nearby.
It can be expensive though. We were lucky enough to find a wonderful co-op preschool nearby. So the tuition is less expensive that others in our area. We are required to work in the classroom at least once a month as an assistant to the teacher. For those who work that isn't always feasible, however, I have seen grandparents, aunts, uncles, dads, and siblings take this responsibility on in some cases.
Ultimately, you just have to figure out what will work best for your child. If you are sure that your child will not be behind the other children who have gone to preschool, and he/she is able to socialize well with other kids than there probably isn't going to be an issue with not going to preschool. One other thing you could consider is going ahead and enrolling them in a local preschool. Try it out for a few weeks and see if your child is really benefiting from the experience. You would know within a few weeks if he is really not ready. If it's just not for you and your little one, then you can pull him out. Hope everything works out well for you!

Carmel - posted on 07/02/2010

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Hi, my son will be going to Kinder this year and he has not been to school. He has been home with grandmother and he has learned numbers, adding , writing his name and reading a little. So, I don't think it is bad if they go straight to Kinder. Our first social skills are learned at home and from family membes. So, I think things will be ok. You made the a good choice.

[deleted account]

i enrolled my son is day care and preschool. Best decision i ever made. I enrolled him because, i work full time and did not have anyone to watch my son for 8hrs a day and couldn't afford to pay someone to do it. That and because my son is very shy and i wanted to him to be around kids his age and interact with them on a daily basis. He was able to learn most of the things they start teaching in Kindergarten, so when he got there, he already knew to write his name and read at a first grade level. It improved his social skills, he's no longer as shy and feels comfortable making friends wherever he goes on his own. I did take the time to show him some of these things at home, but i feel that if it wasn't for both day care and preschool, he currently would not be as ahead as he is now since after work, our time was limited to just a three or four hours before it was bedtime for him. Currently he is reading at second grade level and can write very well. He communicates well with other kids as well as adults. Personally, i think it was the best decision i made and would definately do it again should i have a another child. Good luck with your decision.

Amy - posted on 07/02/2010

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I sent both of my boys to Pre-K, but i also worked at the Preschool. I believe it all depends on the program at the preschool, because like someone posted sometimes those children don't know as much as the children that don't go. All I can say is research the preschools in your area and then decide whats best for you and your child.

Nicole - posted on 07/01/2010

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My daughter went to Pre-K 3 & 4. Unfortunately, I became a working mom when she was about 3 therefore someone was going to have to watch her other than me. I didn't not want to throw away my money on daycare so I found a PreSchool, Elementary and Junior and the best part it was down the street and was a Catholic private school. This past year (Kinder) four kids in her class were ahead of her class and she was one of them.

Eileen - posted on 07/01/2010

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I didn't even go to kindergarten, but by 2nd grade, I was at the top of the class. My first went to Head Start, but it didn't really do anything for academics. She loved it for social reasons. We eventually had to take her out of public school. A lot of what they teach, you teach already.

Jennifer - posted on 06/30/2010

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My son went to a daycare/preschool when he was 3, and we pulled him out after 5 months. He cried everyday when we dropped him off and was waiting by the door everyday when we picked him up. He just wasn't ready. A year and a half later when he went to kindergarten he didn't even say goodbye. He just got out of the car and ran for the playground!

My daughter, however, has been going to preschool for the last two years and knows her alphabet by sight, numbers to 100, can write most of the letters uppercase and lowercase, knows the sound each letter makes, can write her name, knows all her shapes and colors, and can sound out small words, such as cat while looking at books. And while her class didn't really touch on this, she has somehow picked up on addition and subtraction with small numbers. I loved her preschool!

However, all of these things can be taught easily at home if you work on it. Every child is different. One of mine needed more time at home, and the other was eager to be at school.

Jenn - posted on 06/30/2010

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My step-son didn't go until really late he has had problems in school, was even held back in kindergarten. My daughter is going to pre-k this fall. I see it as a way for her to get use to leaving me part of the time (ive been at home with her since birth), she plays with other kids, learns things, goes on trips. I think she can only gain from going, and its an experience I think is necessary for a smoother transition for some kids.

Tammy - posted on 06/30/2010

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Well, I have 4 children, 2 went to pre-school, and 2 didn't. They are all at or above grade level now, know how to socialize, and doing very well.

DEBBIE - posted on 06/30/2010

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i think as long as they have kids to play with in the neighborhood and you work with them on letters and stuff they will do ok and its more important to have them be home with you as long as possible

Wendy - posted on 06/30/2010

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We home pre-schooled both our girls. I work, my husband stays home and we just make a learning experience out of most things we do. We're active with practice books and online learning games. One has just finished first grade at top of the class and the other starts K in the fall. We make sure they had play time with other kids in the neighborhood, maybe a community class here and there offered by the city and they both are good to go for school academic and social wise. We made it a big point for the 2nd child to take her to every school event we could for her big sister, and as ridiculus as it might sound, took her to I think 4 kindergarten school tours, just to go and let; her look around. You can do it without preschool if you want, just have to put in some time :)

Laveda - posted on 06/29/2010

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well me personally i see a great out come from my children when i put them in pre school my daughter who is now 13 has been offerd tohe opertunity to skip grades more then once but she chooses to stay with her peers but yeah pre school is good for them im lookin for my 3 and soon to be 2year old a school now

Miranda - posted on 06/29/2010

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I did sent my daughter to preschool only because she spent the day with her dad while I worked daytime. I just needed her to be in a social environment becasue she's so shy. I'm glad I did it. She very outgoing now and no afraid to to talk to other adults. She is avery smart little girl and is ready for kindergarten.

Melissa - posted on 06/29/2010

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My daughter attended a HeadStart program when she was 3 and 4. She was already ahead of kids in her class, but the social aspect was great for her. Our programs are full time, so the 4 year old class was great because it really prepared her for kindergarten. She was ready to be at school full day! Education wise, all preschools aren't great or all that educational. I believe the socialization alone is great.

Teri - posted on 06/29/2010

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My daughter started pre-school when she was 2 1/2. She was well prepared for Kindergarden including social skills. I think it depends on the kid. If they are well rounded and you have worked with them and they know what they need to know when they start school. It is fine. Some kids may need preschool to help with social skils.

Sherri - posted on 06/29/2010

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All of my children have been or are going to preschool. It is very important to learn not necessarily the academics but what will be expected of them for kindergarten. Sitting, listening, how to interact with other children in a school setting.

[deleted account]

schools have changed a lot since i was in kindergarten (1985 ) no longer do kids learn socialization skills, and have creative play time- now they are fast tracked and are learning math, reading, writing, spanish, music, art, and gym. all in kindergarten and depending on your school district- all in a half day.
if you wouldve asked me before my son was in kindergarten if preschool was necessary i wouldve told you no. now, after i saw what he had to learn that first year i will tell you yes. my son went to a preschool like daycare, and im so glad he did- he got the social skills, the letter recognition skills etc that really gave him a platform to start kindergarten with... i saw a lot of kids really really struggle in his class and some repeated the year - which isnt a bad thing, but, having a crying frustrated child who never wants to go to school is. my daughter has been in preschool since she was 3 and 1/2 and she will stay in it until she begins kindergarten =)

Chrystal - posted on 06/29/2010

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Objectives for children at the end of the pre-school year (from my children's school)
Shows ability to adjust to new situations. 2. Demonstrates appropriate trust in adults. 3. Recognizes own feelings and manages them appropriately. 4. Stands up for rights. 5. Demonstrates self-direction and independence. 6. Takes responsibility for own well-boing. 7. Respects and cares for classroom environment and materials. 8. Follows classroom routines. 9. Follows classroom rules. 10. Plays well with other children. 11. Recognizes the feelings of other and responds appropriately. 12. Shares and respects the rights of others. 13. Uses thininking skills to resolve conflicts. 14. Demonstrated basic locomotor skills (running, jumping, hopping, galloping). 15. Shows balance while moving. 16. Climbs up and down. 17. Pedals and steers a tricycle (or other wheeled vehicle) 18. Demontrates throwing, kicking, and catching skills. 19. Controls small muscles in hands. 20. coordinates eye-hand movement. 21. Uses tools for writing and drawing. 22. Observes objects and events with curiosity. 23. Approaches problems flexibly. 24. Shows persistence in approaching tasks 25. Explores cause and effect 26. Applies knowledge or experience to a new context. 27. classifies object 28. Compares/measures 29. Arranges objects in a series. 30. Recognizes patters and can repeat them. 31. Shows awareness of time concepts and sequence. 32. Shows awareness of position in space 33. uses one-to-one correspondence. 34. Uses numbers and counting. 35. takes on pretend roles and situations. 36. makes believe with objects. 37. makes and interprets representations. 38. hears and discriminates the sounds of language. 39. expresses self using words and expanded sentences. 40. understands and follows oral directions 41. answers questions. 42. asks questions 43. actively participates in conversations. 44. enjoys and values reading 45. demonstrates understanding of print concept. 46. demonstrated knowledge of the alphabet. 47. uses emerging reading skills to make meaning from print. 48. comprehends and interprets meaning from books and other texts. 49 understands the purpose of writing. 50 writes letter and words.

There is much of this that you can do at home, at the park, at the library, and through play groups. Good luck in whatever choice you make. Do what is right for you and your family and don't feel guilty when you make that choice. I think too many people criticize others decisions but everyone has to do what is right for their own family. No two families are the same.

Chrystal - posted on 06/29/2010

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I sent both of my children to pre-school. My daughter went to a private pre-school that cost money and was only for three hours a day. I sent her because she was very shy and I wanted her to interact with other kids. By the time my son was pre-school age (just this last year) there was a pre-school at the elementary school. It was a longer program and he came out able to read short book and to write numerous words as well as learning social skills. As an 8th grade teacher, I can honestly say that I can tell the difference between children who went to pre-school and those that did not. Those that did not are behind their peers academically (not in every case but in the great majority of cases). However, I also think that parent education plays a role in this. If you are a stay-at-home mom and you have a pre-school program that you are doing with your child and/or teaching your child reading and writing skills and you don't want to send your child, they might be fine. I have a list of objectives that my children's school wants them to be able to do at the end of pre-school before they enter kindergarten. I will post the list incase you decide you'd rather your child not attend pre-school. As others have posted, some kids do fine without it.

Monica - posted on 06/28/2010

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My oldest did not attend preschool, but we had weekly playdates with friends and went to the library story time and playground a lot where she interacted with other kids. As long as you are doing some of that and reading to him/her every day, they will be fine.

Chrissie - posted on 06/28/2010

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I only put my son in preschool because he didn't listen well to other adults outside Mom & Dad. Honestly, if it weren't for that small problem, I would never have sent him. I can't stand the idea that a good preschool is so expensive & the co-op I belonged to required a parent to be a teacher's helper every week due to a small class size. My son was well ahead of all the curriculum... I kinda think preschool was a waste of time & money... just my humble opinion

Kelly - posted on 06/28/2010

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thanks Victoria. I found comfort in that for my decision. I am teaching my son to read small words and he knows all of his letters and numbers.

Victoria - posted on 06/28/2010

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My daughter didn't go to pre-k and ended up being one of the fastest learners in her class.She was reading and writing before all of the other kids! I was a little worried when school first started because other children had attended pre-k but lots of them didnt even know how to write there name when they started...I think it just depends on you and what you have worked on with them before they start school.Social wise she did just great:) A little shy at first but after a week or two they get into the swing of things and my daughter was already asking to have playdates everyday!

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