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My 3 year old daughter is having problems getting involve in activities and accepting that she has to go to school eventually. How can I prepare her for pre-school without dramatizing her?

I am a stay home mom of a three year old daughter. I enrolled her for pre-school, and she has been going with me to fill out the papers, and I realized that every time I go for paper work, she gives me a tantrum, and starts crying historically telling me that she doesn't want to go to school. I can't even mention it to her at home because she starts crying and telling me that she is scared of going to school. To help me break that chain of fear, I decided to get her involve in ballet classes but it didn't work out for her. A month after I enrolled her in a basketball class for toddlers with some of her friends and that didn't work aswell. How can I deal with this and convince her that it is ok to participate without forcing her and dramatizing her. School starts in August and I feel it is important for her to attend and this is why I want to prepare her before. I need some advice in how can I introduce her in letting go.

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Asked by MariAzul at 2:01 PM on May. 2, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

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Answers (5)
  • Three years old is such a hard age. They are starting to realize life around them, outside of there immediate area. They know what to "be unsure and afraid is".

    I honestly would start her with simple things that dont require her total participation. Play groups, going to the park on days there are lots of kids there. Find a day care center with a summer program. Enroll her for a couple days a week, a couple hours per day. You dont really need a full or half day, just a couple hours. Start by going with her. When she gets comfortable step away then slowly build it up during the summer to eventaully leaving.

    A three years old, side by side playing isnt unusual. To take a kid that hasnt had alot of "playing experience with other kids" and then expect them to interact or be on there own is asking alot. Some kids have no problem with this. Most kids will be scared. Start slowly...........

    Answer by mistynights234 at 2:16 PM on May. 2, 2009

  • Maybe taking her to places like the park, where it's not such a structured event would give her the socialization with other kids, but not the pressure.

    My middle child was very shy at 3 and I decided to keep him home one more year. He went to preschool at 4 instead. He was quite shy at first, but warmed up once he'd been there for a while. By the time he started Kindergarten, he was good to go! My other two kids, went at 3 and did great, but all kids are different, and he just wasn't ready yet.

    Answer by jjamom at 2:21 PM on May. 2, 2009

  • Keep trying mommy & me classes. See if there is an art class - it's not physical and they usually get to do what they want instead of having to listen to the teacher and follow along.
    Also try storytime at the library or bookstore.

    Answer by kaycee14 at 3:05 PM on May. 2, 2009

  • She may not be ready for pre-school yet. not every 3 year old is. I would definitely keep getting her involved in as many things as you can where other kids are around, where you can step back a bit. I have almost 3 year old twin girls, and while they love to be involved in things and will go willingly, one of my girls will invariably come looking for me after a little while. I'm also a SAHM, and it's always the 3 of us. I know it's important to try and make the separation, for them AND me. That's another thing, try and make it sound as positive as you can, while also reassuring her that you are NOT going away and that you will always be there for her. Hope this helps

    Answer by tazzeetwins at 8:37 AM on May. 3, 2009

  • There are many books at the library and bookstores that are about going to preschool or kindergarten. Maybe if she reads and then discusses with you what she will be doing, that will help. Also, I think that it would help her if you make an appointment to visit the classroom to talk with the teacher and let them meet. Let her play on the playground before she starts too.

    Answer by LovetoTeach247 at 7:11 PM on May. 3, 2009

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