Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Home v pre-school

Tom and I have a busy time with Betty. We make butterfly cakes, we pick blackberries, we make blackberry jam, we pick tomatoes, we make tomato chutney, we go for walks, we collect leaves, we read stories, we play the piano, we dance, we sing, we count in French and Spanish, we paint, we get messy with glue and glitter, we play with stickle bricks, we build sandcastles in the sandpit, we have pretend tea parties, we play shops, we spot birds and rabbits, we watch TV, we fly kites, we paddle in streams, we make pizzas, we visit lots of little people, and lots of little people visit us, we laugh, we wave at aeroplanes, we make play dough, we pop popcorn, we sew seeds, we dig up potatoes, we water carrots, we make up stories, we do puzzles, we dress up, we take silly photos, we go to the playground, we swim, we pick flowers, we bounce on the bed, we eat yummy food, we throw stones in the river, we do chalk drawings on the garden path, we talk about the circus, we look for the moon and the stars….

So if my darling girl gets upset about going to pre-school, and is seemingly bored while she is there, should I take her out and keep her at home?


Mrs P said...

Aww! I'd certainly be tempted to keep her at home. You must miss her and all that fun. But all the other little people are probably at preschool too... It's a tough call. Give it more time, maybe.

Iota said...

How about a compromise? 2 or 3 mornings a week only (or is that what she's doing at the moment?).

I would say yes. It's not worth having an upset child, and it's a shame if the preschool is boring. Having said that, if it's separation anxiety that is causing the upset (ie if she's fine after a few minutes when you've gone), then it is probably worth persevering, and reassessing in a couple of weeks.

I wouldn't worry about social skills. There's plenty of time for those, and anyway, you have playdates.

Snowfairy said...

Every pre-school day is a battle with my little girl too. Getting dressed, getting out the house, into the car... Lots of 'I don't want to go'.
She only goes 3 mornings a week and even though the struggle is exhausting for me, I'm going to keep going in the hope that one day it will be easier.
Also, I love the 2 hours peace at home and she is really, really happy at home time.

Maternal Tales said...

Oh my goodness - no wonder she finds pre-school boring!! Where do you find the energy to do all those things? I am very impressed! Thing about pre-school is...sometimes you need a break too and as much as we want to do the right thing for our children, we also need to look after ourselves - especially when we still have other children to care for. If you still have the energy to do all that stuff with Betty and enjoy it and don't feel like you need a break, then keep her at home...but maybe a bit of time away is good for you. Having said that, it might be beneficial for her to mix with other children (and learn about getting bored) - because life isn't always go go go...

Unknown said...

Hi all, thanks for your comments. Betty goes two mornings a week and has been since she was 18 months old. Only recently has she started rejecting the whole thing. It may be because she is now older and more aware, or because Dolly is now around, but i do think a part of it is her being bored. She has lots of friends that she sees outside pre-school so not too worried about the social thing. And although she kicks up a fuss before we get there, they always say that she has been fine, just very quiet (which slightly breaks my heart because at home she is so theatrical and loud!). But Maternal Tales, i think you are totally totally right - i do love having that break a few times a week, specially as i have dolly now and we get quality time together without betty charging around the place. And yes, learning about getting bored too, it may make her appreciate being at home all the more! Will persevere and see what happens. I do hate the thought of her being somewhere she doesn't want to be though. Thanks again x

Perfectly Happy Mum said...

Wow! How about you setup a preschool? you would be extremelly successful! I feel like such a loser mum, we don't do half of that! OK I have just admitted I am a loser mum!
Honestly you need a break and there is much more than the activities at playschool. She learns a skill that she will carry for the rest of her life: sociability. She learns life with others and that's a wonderful gift. Now if you feel she is too young and not ready why not postponing it a little longer?
Honestly how do you get the energy?
BTW If you have too much tomato chutney, I will send you my address :)

Iota said...

Can you - tactfully - tell them that you think Betty is bored? Or even if you don't do that, try and get them to focus on her a bit more (devious mother trick). Say 'Betty used to LOVE preschool, but recently she hasn't seemed to enjoy it so much. Could you keep a special eye on her?' That might make them try a bit harder.

She might be quieter at preschool because she is watching and listening and taking it all in. It might not be a sign of unhappiness. My mother was always amazed when early school reports said I was very quiet, since I wouldn't stop talking at home (early indications of future wittering ability).

Louise said...

Tough one! You do so many wonderful activities (putting me to shame) with her, not many pre-schools would be able to compete. I suppose pre-school is getting her used to large group situations which she may lack at home and also to mix with little ppl who she may not choose as friends but who make up the world in which we live. However, if she is not enjoying it and feeling unable to be her wonderful energetic and enthusiastic self, it would break my heart if I was her Mummy so I can sympathise and would be asking the same questions that you are (Useless post as I can't provide any answers but I do see where you are coming from!)
P.S: If you ever do consider opening a pre-school (which you would be wonderful at!!), give me a shout! I would relocate to run it with you!

sew hot said...

give the preschool a list of suggested activities and tell them to liven things up a little, or in your case a lot.

truly scrumptious said...

Glad I wasn't the only one to feel a total inadequate when I read your list of home activities...and guilt.
Blimey Elsie, you have raised the bar high for the nursery to compete with!
Lots of good advice already but I would question why you are sending Betty, because that sounds like it's at the heart of things. If you don't need to work then why not dedicate yourself to being a mum 100% and maybe put the nursery money towards a cleaner, which is probably what you do when she is away.
Could you survive without the quiet time with Dolly?
I think it would be hard for a nursery to match your amazing list of adventures and also think you should think about setting up as a childminder.

Pig in the Kitchen said...

Nope. You keep sending her. One day you'll be heartily sick of doing all that hard graft and you'll want to sit on your own at home, listening to the silence.

So grit your teeth when she cries, and run home.

It;ll be worth it in the end!


Unknown said...

Well we certainly don't do all you do at home! Betty and Dolly are very lucky to have you :)
I think having a chat with the pre-school is a good idea. Do you think maybe Betty is ready to be more challenged? Some of my friends, especially the ones with girls said theirs were bored with preschool and that once they got to nursery/school they started enjoying it again.

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