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Are we in the wrong preschool? (sort of long but please weigh in)

Posted by on Oct. 15, 2014 at 1:46 PM
  • 62 Replies

My son is 4-1/2 yrs old and in a Pre-K program.

In many areas that don't factor into a kindergarten readiness program, he is very bright. For example, his class is going over letter sounds and were only on the letter "B" last week when he asked me, knowingly, "Mom, what does 'Batman' start with?" I said, "What letter did you learn this week?" He said, "'B'. Hey! What spells 'Vatman? 'Vatman' starts with 'V'." He thought the exchange of letters was hysterical and started laughing. He did the same thing with Dugs Dunny being Bugs Bunny, and knows Transformers start with "T", when they aren't even up to "T" yet.

However, he has no interest in writing his name and writes letters in class rather begrudgingly. The other kids in class are writing their names already. He can write the first letter of his name if he has to, but tries not to, and it's a little "shakey" looking. BTW, he's left-handed.

He's also very shy and when the teacher asks him a question, he either answers sometimes in a very soft voice or takes a few minutes to answer.

He doesn't always do what the teacher says. For example, if she lays down some paperwork on a table and prepares to give the children instructions, he will grab his marker or crayon and scribble on the drawings that are part of the exercise. The teacher says he doesn't listen to directions.

So the teacher wanted to move him to another class, a preschool class designed for 3's and 4's yet which only has one 4-yr old in reality, and that 4 yr old just turned 4. She said they move at a slower pace.

I was going to try it out, but while debating it in my mind, my son told me that class was for younger kids and he didn't want to go. I knew he'd think that. I also think the slower pace would be horrible for him, for all other activities.

I've read experts say that some children aren't ready to write up until 6 yrs old, and they're normal. I looked up children who don't write at age 4-1/2 yrs and I saw a lot of blogs, etc where moms ran into the same problem. Some were past that problem, and their children just had an aversion to it because of being pushed. I'm worried my son already has such an aversion and I'm wondering if the teacher is making it worse.

When his teacher was telling me she wanted to move him to a smaller, slower paced class, she also called him "highly intelligent". So I asked if having to give him a little extra help in listening to instructions was hard for her and she said "Yeah, I've got 10 kids in here" and the other class has half that.

I emailed her and told her I didn't want to move him, it would negate why we put him in prek. He's learned where his cubby is, where to hang his coat, the whole routine. I just want him to get the routine down, he's never been in preschool before (some of the other childrne have not either). So she said I could keep him in her class; but every day, she seems to want to show me how he doesn't belong there.

Today she showed me a paper with a writing exercise for the letter "c". He didn't trace one C, instead mimicking the work they did yesterday where he was supposed to draw a line through a dotted line; this line just happened to be what the "C" was on, to be traced today. I think he rushed to do the work, and didn't listen, but I don't think he drew the line INSTEAD of the "C" after being told.

When he traced a few other "C"s they were "shakey" looking, but "C"s. She said "just practice with him at home, I don't want to see him get behind"....but my question is, behind WHAT?

When I look up the kindergarten readiness in my state, he fits nearly every item of the lengthy categories except he isn't writing his name, and he's got almost a year before starting kindergarten.

I feel like this preschool expects children to come to class already equipped with the basic skills that they are going to teach him. As far as age development, he fits all categories for this too. It's like they're saying something's wrong with my son because he's shy, too eager to do his work, and isn't writing his name yet.

I'm just worried because the teachers keep trying to act like these things are red flags, yet he's normal to advanced in all other areas. I am trying to weed out my own mothers' bias and expectations to see the truth about this, and it really does appear he's a normal-to-smart boy who just isn't ready to write his name and not used to school.

That's why I sent him to school. And these teachers want the kids to come in ready. Isn't this what they're supposed to teach him or prepare him for?

Are we in the wrong preschool?

 

 

by on Oct. 15, 2014 at 1:46 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Mommaofthree13
by on Oct. 15, 2014 at 1:53 PM
What's wrong with trying to help at home as well. When my kids where going to start in pre-k, that summer before I started working with them. Going over abc and numbers. I would write their names and have them rewrite. I also bought the books with the lines. Work with him at home and he will get it down better.
fatcat0908
by Bronze Member on Oct. 15, 2014 at 2:03 PM
1 mom liked this
If he does not develop these skills he will not be ready for kindergarten. There is no shame is red shirting a child at this age.
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coala
by on Oct. 15, 2014 at 2:03 PM

Just encourage him with fun activites at home.  Use play-doh to make letters.  Draw letters on dry erase or chalk boards.  You can use sidewalk chalk outside.  You can use a cookie sheet covered in pudding or shaving cream.  There are a ton of activities you can do to help make it "fun".  I personally don't think he "isn't ready", but that he just doesn't want to.  I have a very advanced child that would have been bored going to pre-K because she had already met those milestones at 3...so she would have been bored at 4.  She is just now starting to write legibbly and she is 6.  She is also homeschooled and we are just letting her be with her writting because she is 2nd-3rd grade level with everything else.  Some kids develop more slowly than others and they have to be left alone to "get" it with out being pushed.

Mom2Just1
by Mom2boys on Oct. 15, 2014 at 2:20 PM
He should be writing his name by this point. Sounds like he is also immature.
Jadegirl1819
by Bronze Member on Oct. 15, 2014 at 2:25 PM

Well, at 4 1/2 they probably do expect them to have a decent grasp of letters, writing letters and writing their name.  That is stuff they should be learning at home.

I wouldn't put my child in the slower classroom.  I would work with him more at home.

waytomanykids10
by on Oct. 15, 2014 at 2:26 PM

 Ummm how about working with him at home too? It isn't just up to the preschool to make sure your child is ready for kindergarten.

gummibr
by Member on Oct. 15, 2014 at 2:36 PM

I'm assuming you do work with him at home since you are pretty articulate about his development.  I don't know if the classroom is right or wrong but I'm thinking the fit between your son and the teachers isn't the correct one. The teachers may be more used kids coming into the school knowing certain things and it sounds like his teacher isn't very flexible to find ways to motivate your son.  Does he generally like preschool?  I would be more conerned if he seemed miserable.  You might take a look at other schools though and see what creative ways the teachers use to teach

CorpCityGrl
by Bronze Member on Oct. 15, 2014 at 2:40 PM

I agree with this.

Try working with him at home to help him improve and praising him for following directions. The problem here is that he isn't following directions and his social skills may be lagging a little bit. There are much higher expectations entering kindergarten than there used to be, so many kids take it at a slower pace and that's okay. 

Quoting fatcat0908: If he does not develop these skills he will not be ready for kindergarten. There is no shame is red shirting a child at this age.


buttersworth
by on Oct. 15, 2014 at 5:42 PM

 

Quoting Mommaofthree13: What's wrong with trying to help at home as well. When my kids where going to start in pre-k, that summer before I started working with them. Going over abc and numbers. I would write their names and have them rewrite. I also bought the books with the lines. Work with him at home and he will get it down better.

 I did buy those books and he didn't want to do it and would scribble across the page.

I thought that he was just doing that to me and he'd be different with a teacher.

I'd been going over letter writing since he was 3, but when he seemed disinterested and not willing to do any of it, I'd put it away for a while and wait.

buttersworth
by on Oct. 15, 2014 at 5:47 PM

 Ummmm I never said I didn't work with him at home. Because he is having this problem, is it to be assumed I haven't done anything and expect pre-K to do it all? No, I've been working with him since he was 3. He shows absolutely no interest, and I've tried creative exercises. I thought seeing other kids do it in pre-k would encourage him. I'm not relying on the school to do my job.

Quoting waytomanykids10:

 Ummm how about working with him at home too? It isn't just up to the preschool to make sure your child is ready for kindergarten.

 

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