Tuesday, March 31, 2009


I have a fabulous group of mommy friends, most with children within a few months in age of mine. I love them dearly. We talk about all kinds of things; parenting, our spouses, choices we make for our families. We don't all do things the same and I think that is great, I learn a lot from these Godly women in my life.

As of late, the topic has been preschool. A few of us considered co-oping a preschool for our children and others felt lead to do things a little more traditionally. We ended up deciding not to do the co-op. Spread sheets were made, schools compared and now everyone is signed up for preschool for the beginning of next school year. Everyone but Eliana. We are not doing preschool next year, or maybe even ever.

I have given this a lot of thought, and this is what I have come up with. These are our reasons, I don't expect my friends to make the same choice for their family.

1- I like Elie. I know other people like there kids too. I just don't feel the need to get rid of her for a couple of mornings a week. She is a blessing in my life who is growing up quickly and I want to spend time with her.

2- I am cheap. I can think of a lot better things to do with $150 a month.

3- Time is of the essence. Elie is very impressionable at this age and I want to be the one doing the impressing. I have a very small window when I am the only influence in her life. I would like to think I am the main influence for a while, but right now, it is all Matt and I. I think this is such a great opportunity.

4- She doesn't need it. Elie is a sponge. She knows letters and letter sounds, she can count, she knows her shapes and colors. We read a ton. We go fun places. There is so much she can learn at home and I love being the one who gets to teach it to her.

5- The hassle factor. We are going to be having a baby in the fall. The thought of getting 3 little people out of the house by 8:30 several mornings a week sounds awful. I don't want to have to wake a sleeping baby to go pick up a big sister from school. If Elie is at school, Addilyn has no one to play with.

I have discovered that I see the world a little differently when it comes to child rearing and education. I think I should get used to not doing what everyone else is choosing to do. Every family is different and just because this is the right choice for my family doesn't mean I assume that everyone else will choose this for there family.

There is a great book called "Before 5 in a Row" that takes great children's literature and adds activities that go along with it. I think I might do something like this for Elie, she loves books and so does Addilyn. It would give us some structure and give me some ideas. Who knows, maybe I will end up wearing jumpers and home school my children!


Kari said...

Sounds like you've given this great thought. Good job and sound reasons!

I am a product of a non-preschooler. Between sunday school and cubbies I was more then ready for school at the age of 5. Elie is smart and perceptive - she'll be a rockstar!

NLWilliams said...

I'm not preschooling E either...not sure if I will ever school E actually.
Though I am sure we will work on "school" stuff plenty.
I will have to check out that book btw...sounds great...love getting new resource ideas.
I love your reasons.
I love that they aren't pretentious.
I love that you are flexing and deciding and thinking...you are a purposeful parent and will produce a purposed and purposeful child.
I hope I can do the same.
God bless.

Elizabeth said...

Interesting stuff Gretchen! I do love the preschool Gracie is in (and I have her in another one too for reasons of ME going back for career #2, Yikes. Hope I'm not toally screwing her up...not my perfect situation, but anyhoo)

I'm also the product of non-preschool. My mom (a 40+ year teacher) even considered keeping me out of kindergarten. I think our society has gone a little overboard with the whole pre-pre-pre-pre school everything. My point of view is that HOLY TOLEDO, trust me, after kindergarten, it's a fast track to college, maybe grad school then get your butt a job. (I know I'm a little dramatic here, but sheesh!) It's non-stop, fast paced, craziness and this is the ONLY time in their little lives just to BE. And chill. And learn when they want. And I totally understand why you wouldn't do it.

Good post...

McHam Family said...

Gretch - YOu are one of the most inspiring moms I know. If anyone is going to do what's right for their family and is tune to what their kids need, it's you. I know you're going to do the best thing for Elie, Addilyn, and Baby (Babies?!?!?! what up ticker??) and I will always call you for advice on what to do with my kids. Love you & miss you!

Denise said...

Praise God, praise Jesus, praise God, praise Jesus...oh, did I just mention praise the Lord? Obviously, we are behind you 100%.

Courtney Orrange said...

My kids aren't going to preschool either and I will say that many times I feel like we're the only ones. BUT with Brooklyn starting kindergarten this fall I also am very aware of how quickly the years have gone by. We didn't send them to preschool b/c we couldn't afford it, but just a couple of weeks ago I realized that I am thankful that God made it financially impossible for us. I think I would have chosen to send her to preschool and I think for us it would have been a mistake.

Honeycutt Family said...

Wouldn't it be so boring if God made us all the same? So glad that we have choices and options for each of our families!!!! :)

Great post, G.