Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Case for Kindergarten

Smartypants is not enjoying Kindergarten. We're 5 days in and already I'm getting, "I wish I were sick for 152 days so I wouldn't have to go back to school."

I'm sorely tempted to pull him out of his public half day Kindergarten and homeschool him. And I may do that in the end. For the moment I'm trying to pin down solid reasons for why I want Smartypants to go to school this year.

1. Leadership: If one does not have anyone to lead, how does one become a leader? At home, pickins are slim--he can try to get Sweetiepants to do his bidding; stuffed animals don't follow unless you tie them to a rope and pull.

2. Cultural Literacy: From silly songs to the flag salute, I want him to share a collective experience with his peers.

3. Someone else's rules: Smartypants has a strong personality so I have no qualms about allowing his teacher to "boss him around." There are many situations in life that require obedience and cooperation; I'd like him to learn to adapt to an adult perspective and directive different from his parents'.

4. Long-haul socialization: Smartypants coos over babies, plays well with his 2 year old sister, and can hold his own with his 12 year old best friend. But his experience hanging out with same-age kids has been contained to Sunday School (1 whopping hour) and sleepovers with cousins, who are more like siblings. I want him to develop relationships with his peers, learn how to be a friend--and how to defend the friendless.

5. The chance to be the best: Sure, he's the most intelligent, most talented, most beautiful--er, handsome--boy I know, but I want him to be a big fish in a big pond. I want him to bask in the glow of the teacher's praise over his precociousness, revel in being the best hanger-upside-downer (or whatever the best thing to be is that day) -- and learn how to graciously accept defeat (should that defeat miraculously occur) then plan and work to regain Golden Boy status.

If Kindergarten takes, I'm in--he's in. If he still hates school by Halloween...

1 comment:

  1. I hate commenting on homeschooling publicly. I don't want to sound like I'm trying to 'convert' anybody.

    You should hear our beginnings-of-homeschooling story. I was SOOO against it, but now, obviously, not so much.

    If you're up for my point of view, email me (queentomy3boys(at)yahoo(dot)com.) If not, have a great day!

    ...and thanks for the encouraging comment on my blog!


Have at it.