Thursday, December 13, 2012

Preschool for Anna

While I am glad that Anna has spent her baby and toddler years at home, now that she’s almost a preschooler, it’s time to send her out to the real world. My biggest hope for preschool is that it can help her come out of her shell. I know I can’t force it, but I think it will be good for her to experience an environment beyond the comforts of home. Besides, I really think she will enjoy it!

There are many preschools to choose from in our area, but once we nixed the idea of church-affiliated preschools, we really only had a handful. And once I decided that Montessori is out of our price range, we had even less to choose from. Factor in that we didn’t want to drive more than 10 minutes to drop off/pick up, we were left with two.

Preschool Option #1
(Mon, Wed, Fri : 9:15 – 12:15 : $227/mo)

This was a play-based cooperative preschool which is run entirely by the participating families. Each family has lots of responsibilities...from assisting in the classroom to maintaining school building and grounds...too much to list here!

But, I loved the idea that parents were so involved and was excited to be part of a close-knit community. Everyone I talked to was nice and friendly and responsive to my emails. I knew that once I got a handle on all the responsibilities, it wouldn’t too overwhelming Especially my mom said she could help, too.

The school runs on a school calendar (Sept to May with the summer months off) and Anna would be placed in the 3’s class. She would be the youngest in class since she will be just turning 3 in March. And she would be joining the class after winter break, while the rest of the kids would already had half a year together. I liked this school because they go on field trips, has weekly music class with an outside teacher, and Cooking Mondays.

Preschool Option #2
(Tues, Wed, Thurs : 9:00 – 12:00 : $235/mo)

This is the preschool we are going with. It’s a activities-centered preschool run by an old lady who has been doing it for more than 50 years. The “campus” is actually 3 houses she had bought in an old, quiet community. It has a 5:1 student/teacher ratio and a huge, sprawling playground surrounded by trees. All the teachers have been there for many years and seem to really know what they are doing.

Hubs and I toured the school together with the director and instantly got a great vibe from her. She may be like over 100, but she’s energetic and lively. She showed us the classroom that Anna would be in, where she would go potty, and answered all the questions we had. The facility may be old, but it has an homey atmosphere, which is what Anna is used to.

Perhaps what sold me about this school is that Anna will be starting with a brand new group of children. The age range among the kids is smaller than Preschool Option #1….they will mostly all just be turning 3 in the early part of 2013. For the first year, Anna will be there from January until June. Then she will have the summer off and start back up again in September. I also like the schedule of going to school 3 days in a row…it promotes consistency and makes long weekends possible.

The only thing I don’t like about the preschool is that it doesn’t have a web presence. Can you believe that? I couldn't either. There are no computers in the office…everything is done by hand and communicated by phone. But hubs assured me that once Anna is enrolled, we will be communicating with her main teacher, who does send out occasional emails herself from home, anyway. So far, it really hasn’t been an issue since the school is very responsive by phone (they pick up every time I call).

Yesterday was the Open House and I took Anna there to meet the assistant teacher and see the classroom. She was shy, but played with the toys on her own while I talked to the teacher. As we drove home, she said she likes the school and is excited about going. Haha, I guess we will see how it goes in a few more weeks! I am just crossing fingers that she doesn’t get sick right away.

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After all those Will video recently, here is one of Anna. Warning: if you are not her Grandma, you may fall asleep. But we still think it’s cute.

3 comments:

  1. What a day, looks like we'll need to start packing kevlar when we send her off. Good grief...

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  2. Preschool already.. gosh time flies!

    ReplyDelete