Thursday, May 24, 2012

Good Friends Are There For You

I am so thankful for good friends. My good friend, Monica, knew I hadn't been able to get the school district (a long story) to put Acroboy into their free preschool program. She also how concerned I was that he have a chance to adjust going to school, and that budget constraints precluded many private schools.

Monica's own daughters attend an early education training program at our high school. Students have to apply and be accepted into the program which works with young children 3-5 years in age.  The preschool class size is limited and the whole program is under the supervision of a wonderful teacher. The students spend weeks learning before they are ever put in charge of children.  Then, each Friday (when there is no preschool), they evaluate the week.  The cost is nominal. 

Monica talked to the teacher in charge about getting Acroboy into the program just once a week so he could have exposure to sitting in a classroom, learning and using routines, and getting along with other kids.

The teacher called me and she had some concerns too, but in the end we decided to try it out for a few weeks.

Overall it went well.  Things went well enough that Acroboy went Mondays and Wednesdays, then at the end, he went every day.

We hit a few snags with him learning the rules, learning about people's personal space (that one is still an issue), and learning about what not to say in class (it involves quoting dialog from a video game out-of-context).  We had a few days when there were tears because he didn't want to go to school.  I would sit in my car in the parking lot and wait for them to come get me if it became too much.  In the end he would come out smiling and happy and having totally forgotten he had not wanted to be at school. 

It was a good experience and I think a much needed one to prepare him for the transition to kindergarten.  I can't thank Monica enough for her help.  I can only imagine what kindergarten would be like if we were fighting all of these battles then, and not now. 

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