There's been a lot of thinking, praying, and discussing over here. Lydia, a precious 3 years old, is signed up for preschool at the local community nursery school. Several of her friends are signed up as well and we've been looking forward to it all summer long.
The perks of preschool - more time with my boys and social interaction for my daughter - have looked so good for so long.
But now the perks of keeping her home are starting to weigh heavier. And before anyone begins to think I'm being very sentimental let me say flat out that the $70 a month fee is a huge reason we're considering homeschooled preschool. It also greatly helps that I can teach her many of the things she'd learn at nursery school: weather, calendars, standing in a line. I'll just need to be more intentional about those things. We already do counting, writing, reading, singing, cooking, and we have some good playdate groups in the area.
Many friends on Facebook brought up some good points about preschool - there's someone else teaching your child, oldest children (like Lydia) have to learn to share and can't be bossy, there's structured time, and it allows for mom to have some more focused time with the younger kids. All of those points are really valid, I think.
Many other friends discussed how keeping their kids at home for one or two more years was such a beautiful experience for the entire family. They spoke from experience of children who didn't go to preschool and still flourish in kindergarten. This was really reassuring to hear and helped our family come to the conclusion that Lydia will stay home for at least one more year.
Since making this decision I've started a list of things to spend her tuition money on, though most of it will go to bills. Yet there is now some room in the budget for trips to the the zoo and a local children's museum. We now have gas money to visit her great grandparents. I will also be purchasing Catholic Icing's Catholic ABC's Preschool Curriculum Book and An Alphabet of Catholic Saints book. I'd also like to get some more craft supplies, and a few teaching tools.
I also have hopes of using part of the the money to hire a babysitter so Travis and I can go to Adoration together twice a month.
I'm excited about this next year, but I keep telling myself to not get too worked up about it all. I think the key is to be very, very low key about it. Right? I mean, we don't really even need a curriculum but I'm getting one just in case Lydia and I want a little more structure. And because I'm pathetic with crafts and Catholic Icing is not. Lydia loves crafts, the girl deserves some good crafts. I'm really not even gonna think of this as homeschool because, well-known secret, I have never wanted to homeschool. So this is just some more time for Lydia to be a little girl, having fun, hanging out, and maybe learning a few things along the way.
I am shamelessly looking for validation on this.