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One or two years of preschool?

I have 3 kids and feel kind of guilty that my 2 older children have both attended 2 years of preschool, but my youngest will only have 1 year. My youngest daugther is 3, and my middle son is 4. My son will be starting his 2nd year of preschool this fall, but I'm keeping my daughter home with me... frankly, we just can't afford to have 2 kids in preschool at one time. I keep telling myself that since she's home alone with me that we can work together on the ABC's and things like that, but I worry that she will fall behind where other kids her age are without the extra year. Also, I feel guilty that she's missing out on so much of the fun stuff of preschool, making new friends, field trips, class parties, etc. Has anyone else faced a dilemma like this before?

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mom.of.3.

Asked by mom.of.3. at 12:42 PM on Jun. 24, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

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Answers (6)
  • I think 2 years is better. Do they offer a discount for more than one child? Maybe you could help out at the school for a discount.
    drowninginboys

    Answer by drowninginboys at 12:50 PM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • There is no reason for two years. They're learning the same stuff each year, academically.

    My oldest had one year (and was bored), my second will have two years due to challenges, my third may not go at all. I've not yet decided.

    They have play groups (free), library activities (free), the YMCA and YWCA activities, day camps, etc for socialization.

    Your youngest isn't going to miss anything by only having one year.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:08 PM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • She won't fall behind. Many kids enter kindergarten without knowing anything. As you point out - you can keep teaching her academic things at home.
    And that one year of preschool will be enough to teach her what preschool is supposed to teach - HOW to go to school. She will learn all the important things like following the classroom rules, raising her hand, obeying the teacher, working with other children, playing group games, etc. Any ABC's and 123's kids learn in preschool is just a bonus to the actual mechanics of going to school.
    kaycee14

    Answer by kaycee14 at 4:06 PM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • I think it's great that she will be home. It will be your special time with her. And there are always play groups and stuff like that if you feel she needs more 'socialization'. I did send my first two to preschool, but it was more to give my husband (stay at home Dad) a sanity break.
    I would think of something special to do with her about once a week, along with some special 'projects' at home.
    pat7879

    Answer by pat7879 at 4:40 PM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • My son will have 2 years of pre-school, but being an only child he needed to have the early interaction with other children his age because he is very passive. I saw a study somewhere that 1 or 2 years of pre-school doesn't really make any difference, but 1 or 0 did make a difference, so I don't think you should beat yourself up over it. It will give you some good 1 on 1 time with your daughter.
    jackbox

    Answer by jackbox at 12:09 AM on Jun. 25, 2009

  • Preschool only makes a difference in kids academics until second grade and then you can't tell who went to preschool and who didn't.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:47 PM on Jun. 25, 2009

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