Sammi and I spent the last year going round and round about preschool. She wanted to go so desperately but the only programs I could find in our very rural area were run through the school district which meant five days a week 5-6 hours a day. I didn’t want her gone so long. The final straw was when she started telling people I wouldn’t let her go to preschool because I didn’t like school. That took several days and a LOT of conversations with Sammi to straighten out! We finally compromised by calling everything we did at home (crafts, cooking, music and movement, dress up) preschool activities.
The other part of the compromise is that I would let her go to an all day/five days a week program when she was four. I picked a school a little farther from our house because it has a smaller class size and the teachers came highly recommended. We went in May to register Sammi for her class and meet her teacher. She was in love! She was so upset she had to wait all summer to go back to school. I didn’t know when school started exactly (they said they’d send me a letter sometime in July or the beginning of August!) so all I could tell her was “in the fall.”
Once we knew the official date, we made a countdown chain. She was so excited and got to stay up late one night to make it with me. The next morning she helped me make one for Elli for her birthday which was just a few weeks after school started (in fact, it’s tomorrow!) The girls loved their chains. And yes, Elli is wearing one of Sammi’s skirts like a strapless gown.
We had a lot of fun doing some back-to-school shopping. I wanted to make sure we had enough of everything that she would need so before we went shopping, I wanted to go through all her clothes to see what fit and what she had outgrown. I knew she wouldn’t have the attention span for all of it so we turned it into a fashion show. I put all the shirts in one pile and all the pants/shorts/skirts in another pile and let her pick the combinations. I made her bend over, sit down and stand back up in all the pants to make sure they weren’t too tight on her tummy or too low in the back. Amazingly, we went through all the clothes in just over an hour! I had an empty box ready and tossed in all the “rejects” as we went along. Then we folded up the rest and put them back in her drawers. We were done in time to make dinner!
Sammi wanted so much to take her backpack to school even though she didn’t need to take anything. So we put her extra change of clothes in the backpack and she was off for her first day. We went into her room and she was off to explore. And so was Elli. Elli was most unhappy when it was time for us to go and she didn’t get to stay and play. It’s gotten better but it still takes me at least 10 minutes to leave when we pick Sammi up. They both just want to play as much as they can. It’s a fun room so I just go with the flow.
So far she loves school and is excited to get up every morning and go. She’s starting to talk about her classmates by name and tell me all the fun things they do every day. So far, she has come home with paint on her shirt every day, so I’m guessing she loves that station! She also loves playing outside for recess and being the line leader.