Seeking Advice Regarding Pulling My Son Out of Preschool

Updated on October 28, 2009
H.C. asks from Truckee, CA
8 answers

I have a 4 year old who goes to preschool 2 days a week, just started September 1st. I love the preschool and my son has a good time there (drop offs are hard, but when I pick him up he doesn't want to leave). He also has a few friends that go there. My delema is that we can not afford preschool. My husband will be out of work and I can't support all of us. We just can't do it. I think he will be just fine not going, but hope he will be okay going to Kindergarden next school year without preschool expierence. Any thoughts?

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answers from San Francisco on

It's too bad you can't afford it if you all like it, but pulling him out won't harm him at all. He'll do fine in kinder without preschool experience.

Living with parents who are financially stressed-out, on the other hand, WILL harm him. Pull him out. The year will go by quickly, and now that he has a taste of it he'll really look forward to kindergarten. Join a playgroup or something.

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answers from Chicago on

You might look into free preschools, depending on where you live, or financial assistance for preschool. I just read that Scott County, IA offers nearly free preschool tuition to people with certain incomes, and it was not all that low, either. Just some suggestions...
We use the park district preschool and it tends to be reasonable, compared to some others.
Also, some public schools offer it for free. Usually you need to qualify due to a special need, but our neighbor qualified simply because they claimed she could benefit from the school, so I don't know that the child needs a specific diagnosed need, or anything.

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answers from San Francisco on

Holly, see if you can find a group of women in your area that have kids his age to socialize with, he will do just fine!
What is important to be prepared for kindergarten? That he play well with others, be started on some basics like knowing his colors, shapes and simple letters.
It's interesting to me as a mom that has a full generation of kids (27 to 6) how much pressure is put on moms and kids today! Kindergarten was "new" in the early 60's, pre-school unheard of. Then it went from Kindergarten (for 5 year olds) being a norm to pre-school(4 year olds) being "new" and important, now there is pre-PRE-school (3 year olds)! IMO I think it has gotten a bit ridiculous and not necessarily beneficial.
I have had two children that never went to kindergarten at all(it is not required believe it or not!), not because I don't believe in it but because of extenuating circumstances. We were living in Germany during the start up of Desert Storm. There were rumors that one of the places that the terrorists might blow up were our schools! I thought it was a worthwhile risk NOT to put my daughter in Kindergarten. I kept her home, taught her how to read, do simple math, etc. She started 1st grade without a hitch!
My third child went to pre-school (for fun and developing friendships not because I thought she HAD to learn anything), she was older than all the other children because she was born in November and she was to young for Kindergarten (this was in Illinois). We moved to California and the age requirements were different here. She was already reading, doing well at math and socially ready for 1st grade so we skipped Kindergarten and put her in 1st grade. She was a bit rocky at first (any child would be in a new school!) but she is doing just fine this year!

We as parents need to understand that it isn't just the schools responsibility to educate our children, it is ours. And most of us are capable of sitting down and teaching a 4 year old about colors, shapes, etc! Read to him every night, color with him, take him for walks and spell out the things you see, count the number of dogs and cats. LIFE is learning, it doesn't have to be done in a classroom....and it is far cheaper and definitely far more rewarding.
Find out what the requirements are for the Kindergarten that he will be going to (most public schools have general guidelines they can give you) and make sure he knows them by next year.
Most of all, relax, love on him, enjoy this time in his goes by SO fast!

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answers from Fresno on

Hi H.,
I know it's hard to have to stop doing something your child loves because you can't afford it, but in these times, we all have to do it sometimes. Don't worry, he will be fine without preschool.

My daughter is also 4, and actually went to preschool for the past 2 years. This year my mom has been home schooling her, and it has been working out GREAT! They go to preschool story time at the library on Tuesdays (today was custume day; my daughter was soooo excited!). There are home school groups that you can join, both religious and non-religious depending upon your preference - where your child can get lots of play time with other kids, and you can share ideas with other moms as to what's working for them in terms of academic lessons. You can go to the teacher supply store to buy workbooks and books with activities in them that are appropriate for this age.

Honestly, I've found that in the two months that my daughter has been home schooled, she has learned more than she did in the previous two years of preschool combined. We recently had her tested to go into Kindergarten next year, and they told us that academically she's ready for first grade right now. I think this is because my mom has been able to teach to her strengths these past few months with no distracting discipline issues from other kids. In my opinion, even though preschool can be a really great experience, there's no reason you or your husband couldn't do even better for him at home.

Best of luck to you!



answers from Sacramento on

The big thing is that your child learns to write in capital and lowercase letters before starting kindergarten. Our son's public school tested kids for that before he started. Writing is a big focus in kindergarten, so I would concentrate your home schooling there.



answers from Sacramento on

Don't sweat the small stuff! Preschool is fun, can be educational, and is a good opportunity for socializing your child, BUT, plenty of kids do just fine without it. The key is how connected you are. First, don't just stop socializing him. Get the numbers of a few of his friends and get them together on weekends and bday parties.

Also, I don't what area you live in, but some of the libraries have some awesome story times! We live in Lincoln, and there are two that my 3 y/o daughter loves. One is specifically geared towards pre schoolers and the other is a nationwide program called Mother Goose on the Loose. They are both very interactive and tons of people go to them (we have to get there 30 mins early for the Mother Goose one or we don't get a seat!).

Make sure that you are providing him opportunities to make friends by going to the park or joining a playgroup. Those are both free options, and the way we were socialized when we were little.

Be sure that you are still providing the instruction to him at home in regards to academics. You can google your states Kindergarten requirements and base your instruction off of them. My daughter knows her entire alphabet by sight and sound, and is learning how to write, and she doesn't go to preschool, I am just diligent with her at home.

Lastly, if you still feel that preschool is important for your son there are a lot of low cost options. Some preschools are less than $200 a month! And, if that is still too much to swing most counties have a head start program that is geared for kids with low incomes who still want the preschool. A lot of people look down on these programs, but Head Start programs are awesome, too say the least. All of their teachers have more qualifications then any chain (Child Time, KinderCare, Phoenix...).

Oh, and one more option may be a preschool co-op. Use google to find all of these options, and trust me, if you choose not to put him in preschool he isn't the first child and definitely won't be the last.

Good Luck!



answers from San Francisco on

She will be okay. There are a lot of resources online to help provide fun "academic" activities. Make sure she gets lots of interaction with other children. I think if you focus on what the goals are for preschool and provide those experiences for her as best you can she will be fine. Maybe see if there are other families in similar situations and you might be able to set up a coop of sorts providing activities for the children. All the best to you and your familiy!



answers from San Francisco on

Hi H.

Preschool has its merit but don't discount good ole fashion LOVE... If a child has a solid, steady upbringing where love is felt and shared, all the rest will fall into place. At such a young age, a child does like to play but mostly they need nurturing from loved ones, this is to me what helps children grow into healthy individuals. Just do play dates when you can with other kids and read to him each day (this is especially important) and he will do just fine in school...

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