Tonight I went to the "mandatory parent education" night at the kids' school. The topic was Kindergarten readiness and featured a panel of public school teachers, K, 2, retired, pre-K and pre-school. I have to say I feel a lot, A LOT, less stressed about kindergarten than I did before I went this evening. As my family and people I've ranted at about schooling can attest, I'm pretty uptight and worried about what the public school educational experience for my kids will be like. I've always been on the alternative end of the spectrum when it came to teaching, and I just want an authentic, fun experience for school for Ikey and Bea.
I think what I took away from this evenings' forum is that there is no "right" school for the kids but that there are many different forms of "right." If I don't choose the perfect school for them, they're going to be okay. Also that the play-based pre-school they're doing is good for them. They're going to be getting a lot of structure in Kindergarten and if they haven't had time to get dirty and make choices and experiment and be loose about it, they'll still be wanting that when they get to real school. And in K curriculum these days (which is now 1st grade stuff) there's not a whole hell of a lot of playing going on.