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Sending my 3 year old to preschool

(13 Posts)
GTLH Wed 03-Sep-14 15:19:30

i am giving birth next week, my 3 year old DS was due to start school next week but due to all the changes we have chosen to postpone until october. a lot of my friends children started this week and all i am hearing is that there children are not happy, crying when left etc etc ....

Does this mean they are not emotionally ready?
This must surely create emotional disturbances?
if this happens, is it really fair to keep pushing them to be somewhere where they dont want to be?

any advice will be gratefully received thank you.

loudarts Wed 03-Sep-14 15:27:24

A lot of children cry when left at preschool if they are not used to being left by their parents. Ds1 screamed his head off every day when I left for the first 2 weeks, but he soon calmed down and loved it when they started playing. Dd1 screamed when I picked her up as she didn't want to leave lol.

snickers251 Wed 03-Sep-14 16:04:15

Ds had to be carried out he loved it so much, I was more upset that he didn't seem bothered when I was leaving grin

We only did 3 sessions a week for the first term thinking it would ease him in but I really didn't need too looking back

Nancyclancy Wed 03-Sep-14 22:05:30

My daughter started in January aged 2years and 8 months. I was dreading it as she has always been extremely clingy.
She was nervous at first, but apart from looking worried she has never once cried.

At home she is a pickle but at pre school she is a completely different child. She's never been fazed by other children crying either.

They are all so different but they settle eventually.

StripyBanana Wed 03-Sep-14 22:07:58

Dpends a bit on thre pre school, the pre school staff and how they handle it too..

AveryJessup Wed 03-Sep-14 23:18:02

Depends entirely on the preschool and on the child. My son had no issues adjusting to preschool at the age of 2 and went for 2 mornings a week. He is now used to the idea that he is out of the house with others for that time and so now he is turning 3, he will be going for 3 mornings a week.

I'm due DC2 in November so this will be great as I'll have some one-on-one time with the baby when she arrives.

I don't think you can judge based on the anecdotal experience of your friend's children. You just have to assess your child's needs individually. In my DS's preschool there are one or two children who are very fussy at drop-off and cry for their parents. There are one or two who bound in the door and say 'hi!!!' to everyone and then there are the ones in the middle, like my DS, who bound in the door sometimes and other times are feeling a bit shy, as he says, and not in the mood to deal with others. It just depends!

Jakeyblueblue Wed 03-Sep-14 23:44:35

I'm in a very similar position to you and decided not to go down the pre school route at all.
I'm due ds2 next week and felt it was way too much for my clingy ds1 3.1 to have going on all at once. He's been with my mum three days, whilst I've been at work, but has never experienced being left anywhere else. I was also very conscious he would link the new sibling with starting preschool and feel pushed out. None of my local preschools were understanding about this and wouldn't consider a more gradual or delayed start as there are others waiting for places. They also wanted him to attend full days which I personally think would have been way too much for him and also unnecessary, as I am now at home full time on mat leave.
Having said that though, I was totally torn. He will go to school next year as summer born so I did feel it was important for him to get some experience in a more formal setting, however, part of me also really believes we send our kids into the school environment way too early and I wasn't sure he was totally ready. I felt like he would be disadvantaged if I didn't send him as all the other kids these days go, despite the fact, deep down I don't really see it as necessary.
In the end, I settled for a lovely small private nursery. They were totally understanding about the new sibling and his clingy ness and have been brilliant. There's only 8 other children in his group and they allowed me to start him some weeks ago for very short sessions only. He has cried in being left but had really enjoyed it once there. I've opted for three afternoons, 1.30 -3.30, which he has gradually built up to. I think it's given us the best of both worlds and I can see he is benefiting from going and enjoying it. He's still getting practice at all the skills he needs for school and getting used to being away from me but also still able to spend lots of time at home too.
Preschools aren't the only option. Good luck op smile

Jakeyblueblue Wed 03-Sep-14 23:46:36

Sorry typo - sessions Are 1.30 - 4.30.

odyssey2001 Thu 04-Sep-14 09:13:20

I have know children who still cried in Year 3 when they were left but were done within minutes. Those few minutes are all that parents see. I would take that child psychoanalysis with a pinch of salt. It is better to deal with these issues of separation anxiety now instead of at school. However, it is easy for me to say this because my LO can't wait to get into nursery.

Goldmandra Thu 04-Sep-14 09:51:18

There is a widespread expectation that 3YO will start pre-school because there is funding available. The fact that the place is available doesn't mean that children need it.

Some children are happy to go off and be cared for in a group for a few hours a day and others find it very hard. It doesn't mean they do better at school or even settle in more quickly. As a PP said, they can still be stressing about separating in Y3 and they can be children who started pre-school at 2YO.

If you want your DS to go because you think he'll have a ball or you want some time alone with the baby it's fine to send him. If he doesn't like it or you'd like to spend more time with him at home every day, there is absolutely no reason to send him.

If he starts in October and doesn't settle easily, take him out and try again in a few months. He will then be more emotionally mature and may cope much better.

Don't assume that other parents are damaging their children by forcing them to go because you don't know what the alternative may be but, at the same time, don't feel under pressure to follow the crowd. Do what feels right for you and your family.

Sootgremlin Thu 04-Sep-14 20:32:43

My 3.4 year old has just started, I stayed with him for the first session so haven't tried leaving him yet, but he seemed confident and happy whilst there and think he enjoyed it.

I had a baby in December and I'm glad there's been a bit of time in between for him to get used to the new set up and being at home with a sibling, I feel like he has matured a lot in the last few months, it feels ok to send him now as he is settled in himself and is ready to be busy I think.

I don't really want to send him if I'm totally honest, but think it might be nice for him as he is sociable and it's a way for him to make some friends locally. He is only down for two mornings, but if he was distressed at all being left or expressed a wish not to be there I won't push him, it is only for his benefit. If he is upset, then there's no point as far as I'm concerned.

Importantly though his preschool are very committed to have a settling in period that is right for the child and don't believe it is good for a child to be left crying, so we are of the same opinion.

NormHonal Thu 04-Sep-14 20:38:59

I was a crying-at-playschool child. Screaming as my poor mum left the room and attended to my newborn DSis.

FWIW I can remember crying (I have a stupidly good memory) but don't remember feeling distressed.

I think I'm a reasonably well-adjusted grown-up. <twitch> grin

I've been through a bit of this with my own DC1 now (yes, around the time I had my very own newborn Dc2) and I would say it's harder for the mum than for the child.

I've also seen friends' DCs scream for their mums and then be happy and laughing 30 seconds after the door closes. Really!

NormHonal Thu 04-Sep-14 20:40:57

Oh yes, and my DC1 started nursery before 1yo. Still cried at preschool. And Reception. And a Year 1. And when I left the house. And when I left the room sometimes. hmm

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