Tuesday, August 26, 2008

All In All, He's Just Another Brick In The Wall

I love reading Mommy blogs, because there's such a variety of parenting styles out there and I get tickled by the fact that we all deal with the same types of concerns, no matter how we choose to "skin the cat."

One blog I read this morning was about a lady's preschool son who declared "I don't want to go back to preschool this year!" His reasons were cute, and it sounded like the core of the issue was boredom in the school setting.

What bothered me most, though, was a comment that was left. I'm not citing the person's name or the original blog post because I don't want to cause any flames. But here's the comment:

"From this end of it, I’d recommend that you do get him into a more intensive PS if you can. It may be hard this late to enroll anywhere though. But I think it’s good for kids to get used to going regularly, sitting still, having routines, writing their names - all that school stuff - before kindergarten. K is pretty overwhelming in of itself w/out having to figure out all the other stuff as well! Although S only went to PS 3 days/week and all the other PS’s we toured felt it was important for kids to go 5 days that last day of PS, I feel like he was really ready to attack school this year. (I say, after he asked if he could have tomorrow off so he could play…)"

*Perhaps the environment of a preschool is not what this dear boy needs. A more intensive preschool? Come on! This child is four years old. Let him play in the mud, build with blocks, cook with Mom & Dad, read books together on the couch.

*My big beef is the sentence I put in red. Sit still? Have a routine? Write their name? Is THAT what "school stuff" is? Let's see...Reese eats at restaurants and can sit still. He attends library story time & sits still when it's appropriate. We have CoOp weekly where he has to sit & listen at times.

A routine? Our entire day is a routine! I bet if you asked Reese, he could tell you what our day is like...breakfast, TV time, leave on whatever adventure we have planned for the day, eat lunch, come home & take a nap, etc. I don't think shipping him off to a Big Box would foster any more of a sense of routine than our daily life does.

Write his name? Um...I know plenty of CoOp friends who write their name quite well, and they haven't learned that at school! Reese is working on writing his, and that's something we'll work on at home together. I don't need him gone 8 hours a day at Kindergarten to learn that.

*And the last comment...because her son went 5 days/week to preschool, he was "ready to attack school this year." Blah. Why must an education be something to attack? The adventure of learning should be fun, empowering, motivating, joyous. You don't have to attack something that is fun, empowering, motivating, or joyous.

Keep in mind, the child this commenter is talking about is four years old.

I want Reese's learning to be something he loves. I will not allow him to be a round peg squished into a square hole. We're making our own path!


Debbie said...

Hi. Just found your blog and have to say that I agree with you 100%. What is the rush? We resisted letting our kids stay for full day kindergarten even. I picked them up after a half day and told the teacher that the time with me was worth more than being at school. Ha! She still speaks to me even. You will never gets those precious days back but they will have the rest of their lives to "sit still".

Anonymous said...

WOW! This is one HOT MOMMA!! Ouch. Someone's on FIRE! Whew, let me get back up in my chair and I will put in my two cents worth... :)

Well, I absolutely one hundred percent agree with you. I cannot use my kids as examples because they are still little and no one will take my advice at this point (although my kids are loving, joyful, and more excited about life than any "traditionally schooled" kids I know)...however, take the statistics, do the research. A child needs his parents at this critical age more than he needs to learn to read and write. What the heck are your priorities anyway? (not yours, Reese's mom, but the audience in general). More than half of marriages end in divorce. More than half the population switches jobs every 5 years. Why do the same crap everyone else is doing? If you do, you'll get the same crappy results: a life going around in circles. Get your kids out of school and into a childhood of love and adventure. Allow him to learn what he loves and teach him that FAMILY and LOVE are the most important things in life...not education, or career, or getting good grades. Those are nice, but let's not make them the foundation of his childhood.

Remember, if we do what everyone else is doing, we're going to get what everyone else has got. I don't want what everyone else has, I WANT MORE!!!!

Stacey Kannenberg said...

You are your child's first and foremost teacher and only you know what is best for your child. Sounds to me as if you doing a great job and raising a happy kid!
Keep on keeping on!

Soultravelers3 said...

Oh yes, I have to agree wholeheartedly, but then I think most homeschoolers would.

Play and free time is so important to develop a sense of self and so few kids get that much these days.

Reese is one of the lucky ones!