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Thread: Preschool HELP

  1. #1
    burbuja0512's Avatar
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    Default Preschool HELP

    Hi all,

    I am not having a great time with my 4 year old DS in public pre-school and could use some advice or ideas.

    Background: DS has been adding, subtracting and reading some basics for quite a while now. I put him in pre-school because I thought that would supplement what he had learned and help him advance. Unfortunately, I have found that his class is just barely learning letters and numbers. His teacher doesn't care that he already knows the material; in fact, she likes that he "learns so quickly" so she can use him as the example student. (He could practically teach the class it's so far behind his abilities grrr...)

    Even though I live in supposedly one of the better school districts in the state, from what I can tell, this seems to be the norm. I have pulled my older children out of public school and they're now homeschooling. However, I HAVE A FULL TIME JOB. Yes, I work from home, but I work the whole day, my kids are home working with me, but I can't do any schooling during the day. My older kids and I work on the weekend to plan the week and get help with what they don't know. I am keeping careful track of their progress, but much of it is self-directed learning or programs such as ALEKS. It's working out really well and they're advancing beyond their peers, but I can't homeschool a pre-schooler.

    So I am willing to put up with a slow-learning pre-school class, but I don't want to move DS into kindergarten. It's more of the same - slow learning and DS who is so far advanced right now will continue to be an example child until the other kids catch up with where he's at. He has to wait for them to add and subtract before he'll learn anything new... and that could be a couple of YEARS.


    My options are limited: I can't homeschool because I don't have the time. I have a small daycare budget for DS so I could apply that to a private school, but I don't think I could afford much. We do have free, online K-12 schooling available in my district, but it requires a Learning Coach, which is an adult to facilitate the instruction.

    Does anyone have any ideas and/or suggestions? Are there cheap private school options "out there?" Are private schools even any good? Is there some other choice that I'm missing?


    Thank you for reading all of this!!
    Last edited by burbuja0512; 01-24-2012 at 08:35 PM.
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  2. #2
    Lindagerr's Avatar
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    Montessori!! Just what you need. I have a friend that teaches at a Montessori Pre-school to 1st grade school it really is great for advanced students because they pretty much learn at their own pace. I don't know about your area, but around here they are not that much more expensive then a regular preschool. good Luck with this, from my own experience I know it is important to not let them get to bored when they are young or it could backfire later.
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    Quote Originally Posted by burbuja0512 View Post
    Hi all,

    I am not having a great time with my 4 year old DS in public pre-school and could use some advice or ideas.

    Background: DS has been adding, subtracting and reading some basics for quite a while now. I put him in pre-school because I thought that would supplement what he had learned and help him advance. Unfortunately, I have found that his class is just barely learning letters and numbers. His teacher doesn't care that he already knows the material; in fact, she likes that he "learns so quickly" so she can use him as the example student. (He could practically teach the class it's so far behind his abilities grrr...)

    Even though I live in supposedly one of the better school districts in the state, from what I can tell, this seems to be the norm. I have pulled my older children out of public school and they're now homeschooling. However, I HAVE A FULL TIME JOB. Yes, I work from home, but I work the whole day, my kids are home working with me, but I can't do any schooling during the day. My older kids and I work on the weekend to plan the week and get help with what they don't know. I am keeping careful track of their progress, but much of it is self-directed learning or programs such as ALEKS. It's working out really well and they're advancing beyond their peers, but I can't homeschool a pre-schooler.

    So I am willing to put up with a slow-learning pre-school class, but I don't want to move DS into kindergarten. It's more of the same - slow learning and DS who is so far advanced right now will continue to be an example child until the other kids catch up with where he's at. He has to wait for them to add and subtract before he'll learn anything new... and that could be a couple of YEARS.


    My options are limited: I can't homeschool because I don't have the time. I have a small daycare budget for DS so I could apply that to a private school, but I don't think I could afford much. We do have free, online K-12 schooling available in my district, but it requires a Learning Coach, which is an adult to facilitate the instruction.

    Does anyone have any ideas and/or suggestions? Are there cheap private school options "out there?" Are private schools even any good? Is there some other choice that I'm missing?


    Thank you for reading all of this!!
    yes!
    1. Bring him home.

    2. Get the word out to your kid's home schooled teens, you need 1-2 teens who want to come and "do school" with your son 2 days per week each. You should pay them. Teen 1 can do A, B, and C, on Monday and Wednesday; while teen 2 does X, Y, and Z on Tuesday and Thursday.

    3. Buy a family membership to somewhere your son would like: YMCA, Children's Museum, Indoor play place, etc. 1 day per week YOUR teen gets to take the toddler for a few hours. That's rewarding for both of them on so many levels!! If this sounds tricky, an alternative is to sign your child up for something- eg. swimming lessons, t-ball, kindermusic, and simply have the teen drive him, wait/watch. Afterwards, they can grab some french fries, swing by the library, then return.

    I've hired homeschooled teens for all kinds of things through the years. Mainly, I network through other parents and ask if they or anyone they know has a teen who would like a little job (I even had a hs teen housekeeper for one semester) and I've ALWAYS found someone. I had 1 do art for a full semester to two of my kids, one did music for 6 weeks, one did only reading this past summer every Wednesday!

    And I almost forgot, most libraries have preschool "stuff" during the day. If you can't take him, you can farm this out to another parent (barter?) or have your son take him.

    Seriously, you can homeschool and still delegate huge chunks of it ESPECIALLY at this age when play is s till important, because people generally like preschoolers. They are old enough to play with, they love older kids, and they're not really a baby. I don't think you'd have any trouble putting together a well oiled machine,

    AND I love Linda's idea! I've not used them, but also heard great things!!
    Last edited by cookderosa; 01-25-2012 at 02:11 AM.
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    One option that isn't thought of very often is to have your eldest children teach the younger ones. I've taught my youngest siblings reading, writing, and basic math. What I like about this is that it gives me an idea of what it'll be like to homeschool my own children someday. I won't be starting from ground zero when it comes to experience; and the old adage "the best way to learn is to teach" is something I've found to be very true! I've learned more from teaching them than I've learned through schooling myself! I know this isn't always practical, but I thought I'd at least throw it out there.
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  5. #5
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    @Linda - Thanks so much. I am going to try to Montessori suggestion and at least call to check tuition rates. I know we have a school that's not too far from our house.

    The only thing I don't like about Montessori (without knowing the price yet, lol) is that it ends at age 6. I think that I just really really don't want him to go to public school. I didn't used to have a hangup about it, but I've seen how poorly my older kids were taught. It's not any individual teacher's fault, but the classes are crowded and teaching kids how to pass the standardized tests, not to actually learn. I would definitely need a post-montessori plan.

    @Jennifer - I really like this idea and have in-house teenagers who could do this. I also have a very loving in-home daycare person who has known DS since he was just a tiny baby. I know that I could get her to help as part of the program. DH feels strongly about having DS in a social environment and I don't know if we can provide a ton of interaction with other kids his age. I would have to do some homework to find out what we can do and what sort of programs are available. My oldest DS will be driving by August, so perhaps there could be some options with him and/or my daycare person.

    I feel a little better... I do have some choices and I think I need to start putting together a plan. This will depend on Montessori tuition and also how my DH reacts to a home-based program using the teens to assist.
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    I'm not really much of a fan of the overall education system. This includes public and private schools. We tried them all through the 5th grade, never found satisfaction.

    Your resourceful, find a way to bring him home and open up the world of possibilities he deserves. It might be that "daycare" plays a part a few days a week to allow you to keep up with everything else (a safe place for him to be and play while you do something else)....but I would bring the education home.
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  7. #7
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    Update:

    I pulled DS out of pre-school. I told the school that I was disappointed that he wasn't being challenged. I also let them know that my 2 year old can already do the stuff that they're teaching the kids. The response was a very cold "we have the same curriculum for all pre-schools. We can't change it."

    I talked to my beloved babysitter, who does in-home day care for my 2 year old DD. She will work with DS on pre-school topics and I know that she can because she had already been teaching him phonetic reading and addition/subtraction before I pulled him out to go to pre-school.

    So... immediate problem solved, but still haven't made a decision about kindergarten other than DS will NOT be in public school. I really want to do the un-schooling thing and have the teens help, but convincing DH is going to be a very tough sell...
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  8. #8
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    Convince DH with examples of homeschooled folks who've done amazing things & graduated from college at 16 or some young age....just give a shout out on this forum and they'll proudly step forward. Look at your older son! I don't know if he's homeschooled, but he's doing great earning credits, and homeschooling can produce the same or even better with your younger son. You won't regret your decision. And yes, homeschoolers socialize. I may be a little biased, but I think homeschoolers are very well socialized, simply because they're *not* in a class of ppl all their age. In the real world, you'll find yourself with all kinds of ppl of various ages. It's quite a reality shock for some more conventionally-educated kids when they graduate from their college class of a hundred other 22-year-olds and find that they must now start working and interacting with ppl twice their age or older and act like adults.

    Then again...DS is only 4??!! Don't sweat it! This is the most precious time of life!!! Anyway, do you think you or a responsible caregiver is a better or worse role model than 20 other hyper misbehaving 4 year olds and 1 frazzled teacher??!! Congrats on pulling him from preschool!! Woo-hoo!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by burbuja0512 View Post
    Update:

    I pulled DS out of pre-school. I told the school that I was disappointed that he wasn't being challenged. I also let them know that my 2 year old can already do the stuff that they're teaching the kids. The response was a very cold "we have the same curriculum for all pre-schools. We can't change it."

    I talked to my beloved babysitter, who does in-home day care for my 2 year old DD. She will work with DS on pre-school topics and I know that she can because she had already been teaching him phonetic reading and addition/subtraction before I pulled him out to go to pre-school.

    So... immediate problem solved, but still haven't made a decision about kindergarten other than DS will NOT be in public school. I really want to do the un-schooling thing and have the teens help, but convincing DH is going to be a very tough sell...
    DH is a tough sell on unschooling or homeschooling for DS? Seriously, here's your argument: If I put DS alone in the basement for 2 years, he'd still come out ahead of what he's learning in "school" so short of ACTUALLY putting him in the basement, whatever we offer will be better than where he is. (checkmate)
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