When Is Attachment Parent Child Ready for Pre-school?

Updated on December 12, 2008
E.P. asks from Glendale, CA
6 answers

My husband and I have found a Montessori pre-school that our daughter would blossom in, now I am not sure if we should put her in when she is 2 or 3 years of age. She loves learning, books, socializing. We do lots of activities together, but we will be having a baby in 6 months and I feel like it will be really hard to give her that stimulation that she is craving for all day long. I feel she is ready intellectually, but emotionally, maybe its me not ready to let go. I would love to hear other Moms experiences about how you know when your child was ready for pre-school and how did you integrate them. She would be at school for 6 hours a day 5 days a week. Please help, thank you.

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answers from Los Angeles on

Did you mean to say she'd be in school 6 hours 6 days a week?

That aside, we are AP. My daughter wasn't ready before 3.5 for preschool (her school is all day, 9-3ish (you can drop off earlier/pick up later - whatever works for you). I left her for half a day for the first few weeks and she went two days a week. Eventually she wanted to stay, she did great but I won't lie, it was hard for her to part with me - I spent a lot of time at that school. She is in kindergarten now (at the same school) goes 5 days a week from 8:30 - 3:30 (I pick her up later often because she doesn't want to leave). My 3.5 yo son goes to preschool there and he on the other hand was ready long before turning 3 - but for me, younger than 3 is just too young (just my opinion). Actually, I always thought younger than 4 was too young, until I found this place. He goes 3 days a week, same hours as his sister and he just loves it. On the days he doesn't go, he is disappointed. I know he could do 5 days a week, but he doesn't need it, besides, I'd miss him more than I already do!

That was a long about way of simply saying - it is up to the child - they are all so different. Some thrive from the get go (my son) for other's it is torture (my daughter) both raised the same way.

Congrats on your pregnancy!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I work in a preschool. I would wait until she's 3, even closer to 4. You are your child's first and best teacher and no one will take care of her as you would. With a new baby, there will be lots of new things she can learn from you, especailly if you include ehr in all of those activites you mentioned above. If it isn't a necessity, I'd wait a while. As much as she would flourish, she has a enough school ahead of her.

When you start her in school, especially if it as age 2, start her 2 days a week for 3 or 4 hours. This will give you a little break. Begin this before the baby comes so she doesn't feel like she is being pushed out. If she has a difficult time there and is obviously not enjoying it, take her out. Even if she is mentally ready for preschoo, emotional readiness can be different sometimes. We sometimes get parents who let there kids stay at our school, screaming all day when they don't need to be there. So just keep on eye on her to see how it works. There is a definite difference in behavior in children who attend 2 or 3 days half day vs. all day everyday. My daughter did attend preschool for 2 half days when her brother was born.

At 2 years old, children are actually not very social. This is the age of "it's all about me" and engage in what is called parrallel play. Honestly, a group of two year olds could care less who's in the room with them kidwise. They are focused on the toy they have, how they can get it back because someone took it and when is someone going to feed me no matter how great the activites and curriculum are. When children are older, that is when they start to develop relationships with other children and actually play with others, have conversations, and interact, etc.

It is a big decision that will have a great effect on your daughter. You and your hubby know what is best for her. Happy pushing with #2.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on


Technially Preschool starts at age 3 and 4. Becareful of facilities calling themselves "Preschools". Especially at age 2. Make sure the instructors in the classrooms have credentials and have taken all the schooling necessary to be a preschool teacher. a lot of times in facilities like tutor time, child time etc... the instructors are not "teachers". I would recommend you keeping your child with you and when she turns age 3 then put her in part time in a real preschool with real teachers. Something like 3 days a week half day. Then when she is 4 put her in 5 days.

Good luck

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

I'm AP too.

When my daughter was about 3 almost 4 years old, she started preschool. We already had had her enrolled, did the paperwork etc., and SHE was wanting to go, very much.
Prior to that, I home-schooled her and spent a lot of time with her, since she was my only child at the time. And, she had the skills, emotional maturity, and "yearning" to go to preschool, already.

Then, just so happened, that around the time she would start preschool, my 2nd child would be born that same month. So my daughter had about 2 weeks to get used to her school, before I had baby number 2.

My girl, transitioned to everything FINE. AND she was glad she was at her OWN school, had her OWN friends, her OWN routine.

We started her off with part-time for about 3 months... 3 days a week, half day until 12:00 noon. THEN, we switched her to everyday, until 12:00 noon. She did fine, and was happy, and needed the EXTRA stimulation, interaction with her peers and "same age" children. She benefited from this very much. (we didn't see the point in keeping her in school until 2:00, because they just nap in the afternoon anyway) BUT, if you have a baby as well... YOU would benefit by having her in school until the afternoon AFTER she has had her nap in school... thereby, "allowing" you more time with baby, and his/her nap time... and then when your girl comes home, she would have already rested/napped).

Then, after I picked her up from school, with baby in tow... then it was nap time, for BOTH of my kids. You see, I wanted to keep my daughter on HER nap schedule, which I did at home... and continued that SAME routine for her.... even after I had my 2nd baby. THIS kept the sanity and ease of a routine, INTACT, for all of us.

Kids, transition to school pretty well. Some don't. Each child is different.

You need to go according to YOUR child... and HER readiness. That is the bottom line. They learn SOOOO much in preschool.. .that you would not have the time for or resources for at home. It's not all of us that have a craft factory/school supplies room at home to engage them with. So, school is good. AND they learn social things, people skills, academics, songs, play, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY... it teaches them regularity AND prepares them for Kindergarten.

If you feel your daughter is "ready" at that age of 2-3 years old which you project for her time-line... then go for it. Let her be, be a pair of wings for your child to soar with....that is my best advice.

It will be fine. Don't worry.

All the best,

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on


Greetings. I too am an AP...and it's amazing. My little dude is 2.5 years old and has been displaying a desire to be around other kids. We go to the bookstore every weekend for storytime and breaking him out of that group takes at least an hour of hanging out and letting him get his 'kid fix'. I met another Mommy, who takes her little boy to morning music classes at a local preschool who suggested the same thing for my little guy. We totally agreed that this may be too young for a full on preschool experience, but something two days a week for a couple hours that allows our kiddos to interact and learn with other kids their age.

Most preschools offer half days, like Susan mentioned, and will accomodate your drop-off and pick-up times. If your preschool has that kind of environment too, then you might want to start there at whatever age she is ready. I am a full-time working out of the home single Mom, and I had to put my son in daycare TOO early and it was painful for both of us. Now, he visits with his father in the morning and my Mom (who quit her job as a teacher to help me) is his 'pre-preschool teacher' in the afternoon.

I think for me, I'd like to get my son out in the kiddo world and learning from his peers. But, I want to make sure it's in his timeframe and nobody elses. So, we'll start small now and work our way up!

Since you have time before the other baby comes, maybe look into that option. Otherwise, just keep enjoying and nurturing your amazing little lady!

Best wishes!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Diego on

Still not sure what Attachment Parenting is (but think I may have (or am) doing it)? DS never went to preschool (he was 2-years old when #2 was born), I home-schooled and we went everywhere together. And the bond he formed with his sister is just amazing, even at 2-years-old, he was a big help. He integrated into kindergarten just fine (better then some children who had been in preschool) and is loving it. DD probably wont go to preschool either, we are still homeschooling (just started at the beginning again) and I am due with #3 in 8 weeks. Days are hectic, and not everyday is as productive and educational as you want it to be, but as long as the children are getting out of the house, socializing and interacting with other children (park, play dates, Sunday school, etc.), adults (errands with mom and family) and their environment (museum, zoo, beach, etc.) I think they are exposed to a much more varied diet of stimulating education. Just my 2 pennies worth.

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