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What is your opinion on Pre-School vs. Pre-K?

The reason I ask is because where we live, my daughter has the option to stay in her Pre-School class until she is old enough to enter Kindergarten, OR she can be moved to Pre-K instead. She absolutely LOVES her pre-school teacher and the kids in her class and I am just nervous about moving her. On the other hand, I know it may be good to move her to get used to a longer schedule (Pre school is only 3 hours a day and pre-k is 5 hours), plus I am sure they do more actual learning in Pre-k. But she is such a smart girl as it is. What are your opinions? Move her or keep her?


Asked by Ctink8189 at 8:39 AM on Jul. 23, 2010 in Preschoolers (3-4)

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Answers (8)
  • If your child is not very behind in development and she seems to be on target, enjoys her classmates and teacher, I would leave her in pre-school. She will have enough experience with longer school days once she starts kindergarten. Unless there is a social, developmental, or educational reason to move her I would just leave her where she is.

    Answer by crazycoolmom3 at 9:54 AM on Jul. 23, 2010

  • Hmmm... not sure. My son starts Kindergarten next month and he did neither preschool or prek. I taught him to at home. Where I live Kindergarten is only half day so in reality he will only be there 2 1/2 hours. We used to do "school" here at home longer than that. Let her move on... if she is already in a structured setting she should be just fine. Children need challenges to stay interested!

    Answer by WoodWitch at 8:44 AM on Jul. 23, 2010

  • from what I just googled, it appears that pre-k is more structured like normal school than pre-school.

    Do you feel she would benefit from learning a more structured schedule?


    Answer by DarkFaery131 at 8:45 AM on Jul. 23, 2010

  • If you would like to switch her is it possible for you and her to visit the pre-k class and see what she thinks? Or at least talk to the teacher? And ask her present teacher her thoughts too. You say she is a smart girl so I doubt it would be a problem if she stayed in the pre-school. I think the only reason to switch might be that she goes the extra 2 hours. Her happiness where she is means a lot. This probably isn't much help....just throwing out ideas. Only you (and DH) can make this decision. I think she will flourish either way. Good luck

    Answer by elizabr at 8:48 AM on Jul. 23, 2010

  • I consider both pre-k and preschool to be ways to prepare your child for starting kindergarten. I don't think either would be a 'better' option...just go with the one you are most comfortable with. If you love the preschool teacher and she is learning and growing in her class, then I see NO reason to send her to pre-k...just keep her in preschool for another year and then send her on to kinder. GL!

    Answer by thea11ens at 9:17 AM on Jul. 23, 2010

  • There is no distinction between the two around here. It's all called preschool. At the school my kids went to the preschool was all day (7:50am-2:20pm) 5 days a week just like all the other kids in the school. My youngest went to a different preschool and it was just 2 days a week for 2 hours each day. She learned so much last year. She's way ahead of where my other kid were at her age (she was 3 1/2 when she started and 4 now).
    Personally, I would just keep her in the class she was in if she's enjoying. She won't be any farther behind or at a disadvantage when she starts kindergarten. My son never even went to preschool and my 4yo won't be going this year (we're moving and can't afford it). My son did fine in kindy (he's going into 3rd now) and I know my 4yo will be fine, too.

    Answer by justanotherjen at 8:48 AM on Jul. 23, 2010

  • Well they try to be as structured as possible at her pre school, but doesn't always work out as the planned written schedule goes. She has learned ALOT since we have had her in this school though so I am very impressed with it. I am just more concerned on moving her to a different class with a different teacher and different children. I know that regular school is going to be the same way, switching every year as well, so maybe it would help her prepare for that if I moved her.

    Comment by Ctink8189 (original poster) at 8:49 AM on Jul. 23, 2010

  • My son preschool (it is private) has a full accredited pre-k program. We are staying at his preschool b/c it is where he is comfortable. Also the public pre-k is based on income. We do not qualify.

    Answer by Mom2Just1 at 5:22 PM on Jul. 23, 2010