We have a semi-momentous event beginning next week in Miss Gs world: her momma and I are going to start some informal preschool activities with her for a short time each day.
This adventure is not about the system of education that encourages making a toddler into an adult sounding, forward thinking academic by age five. I personally think that Miss G is rather bright, but grandma, nor her parents, are at all about turning her into a PhD candidate at ten years old. I foresee feeling woefully inadequate soon enough on the education front with her anyway, pushing and prodding isn’t necessary.
She has though, for some time, and quite vocally, been extremely curious about school, where the neighborhood kids go with their ‘pack-packs’ each day, and when she can join them.
Mom even looked into local pre-schools in her area. There are those associated with professional daycare programs, but Miss G is not in professional daycare so that seemed rather silly. There are a few independent, private programs, but for varied reasons (ideology, cost, days offered, cost) it was decided to hold on an outside program for now. I too have a few programs in my area of slightly less cost, and more general ideals, but the days offered just don’t coincide well either when two different people are the drivers on two or three different days.
Mom has been putting together a very simple and short program of activities that focus on a specific letter, or shape or number and we will work on the chosen special character for one week at a time. While this plan isn’t going to satisfy Miss Gs desire to ‘go to school’ she is coming to grandmas one day per week now and that mixes up her usual routine a bit, hopefully giving her newer and changing views of her up-to-now limited worldview. I have quite a few places for activities around my locale as well that will allow us to get out and explore, so the timing with spring around the corner couldn’t be better.
Miss G has had a big year already what with first advancing into true toddler mode, then accomplishing (almost) the whole potty training endeavor. She is articulate, able to grasp concepts about emotion and consequences, and feelings, and so very inquisitive. I find great joy in just, very literally, watching her think. She will be chattering about something, pause-often significantly-to puzzle out the correct word or idea that she wants, then toss it into the conversation and carry on. She does much the same with physical tasks as well, practicing over and over until she accomplishes her goal. We can definitely apply the label determined to Miss G.
Age three is just around the corner, as are other changes to come for her and her world this year. While I know part of the appeal of ‘going to school’ for Miss G is simply the interaction with other kids, I think we can all find ways for her to learn to socialize as well. There’s actually a drop in activity program nearby that I can utilize on her day’s with me here, as well as library programs close by. Miss G has a smart momma who has decided to ease learning into the everyday routine. It’s only Miss G, at this point anyway, that doesn’t realize that her school isn’t going to be much different from what we’ve been doing with her everyday for 2 1/2 years. It’s amazing how, with just a bit of structure, play time can turn easily into school time.
The official Caillou backpack doesn’t hurt either.