One month of preschool for my toddler! All the tears and laughter!
Towards the end of February I wrote a post about Oden starting school and how terrified I was about it. I thought I’d give you a little update on how that went.
Everyone at the school warned me that it would take him three weeks to fully settle into being at school but I underestimated just how accurate they were about it.
The first week was HELL
We started off by taking him in for a couple of hours a day for the first few days. Increasing pick up time by half an hour a day!
The first morning I dropped him off and he ran off to play. He didn’t even look back as he left. I felt relief because my child was happy and he didn’t feel abandoned. I was so proud of my son even though my heart was a little hurt that he didn’t care if I left. First day went amazingly.
Day two I even got a kiss before he ran off to play. Great! This is going to be a lot easier than I thought.
Day three he had figured out what was going on and that I wouldn’t just be waiting in the class for him when he needed me. He cried. He cried big crocodile tears while I fought back tears as I walked away listening to the sound of my child screaming for me. I sat in the reception area and had some tea while I waited to hear if he would settle. He did. Within minutes he was off playing.
Day four he cried when we arrived at the school. He refused to let go of me and the cries were even louder than before but I left knowing he would be okay. A few hours later I got a call from the school telling me he had been bitten by a little girl who wanted the toy he had. My heart broke for my child. I picked him up from school later that day and he didn’t seem to care that anything had happened.
Day five was a little easier but he didn’t want to let go. It was tough.
Week two – Starting to settle in
Week two was a lot of him refusing to let go of me. There was a lot of crying. A lot of screaming and a lot of mom guilt going on. I waited at home for hours for the call that I had to fetch him. The only call I got was that he had fallen and hurt his lip but that he was okay! Every day seemed to be getting a little easier but I wasn’t sure and I didn’t want to jinx anything by saying he seemed to be settling in well.
Week three – Whew, we made it!
Week three, Monday morning, I drove to school singing the usual “yay school, yay we’re going to school, school school, we love school” song – which I’d made up to amp him up for school every morning. We arrived at school and he was a completely different child. LIKE CLOCKWORK and exactly as they had said, he was happy, he waved me off, he ran off to see his friends. He didn’t care that I was leaving and was perfectly happy to be at school. He even started napping at school.
This lasted for most of the week but on Thursday morning on his way to school he was violently ill and threw up all over everything. Just when we were starting to settle into school, he had to stay at home for a few days while he went on antibiotics.
Week four – The last week of term
As soon as he was better, we took him back to school. He was thrilled about going back and when I said it’s time to get dressed for school, he couldn’t get his clothing on fast enough. he was outside and waiting at the garage door before I was even ready to leave.
He asked to be put down before we even got to his class and like a big boy he walked to class holding my hand. I don’t know how he’s getting so big so fast. My tiny little boy has friends and plays and loves school. He brought home his first art piece and now there are two beautiful art works proudly displayed on the fridge.
Holiday period means mum’s turn to get creative
School has closed for a three-week period which meant I had to actually sit down and create an outline of activities we can do while he’s home to stop him from getting bored. I’ve pinned my heart away on Pinterest and invested in some crafty material.
I’ve put all my own work on hold which I struggled with because my business is going so well. So for the next three weeks I will work only with my already existing clients instead of actively pursuing new clients and new work. I will also have to adjust to the hours that I’m able to work during the day. That’s okay though.
I love being with my baby and even though I’m terrified he’s going to be bored at home, I’m looking forward to the time we will spend together.
How I feel about school after this first period
I don’t think we could have made a better decision than sending him to school.
A few people have criticised us for sending him in so early but they will just have to live with that. I have goals and things that I need to get done and Oden has been wandering around the house bored out of his mind trying to find things to do. I’d much rather he gets the stimulation at school than ends up just watching TV all day. At the end of the day, as his parents, we decide what is best for our child and this was absolutely the right call.
He is more independent than ever.
He is more confident in himself and his abilities.
He has grown mentally so much in the last month.
He has started using words every now and then.
He has routine and is stimulated.
I’m looking forward to the end of the holidays and getting to see what the next term brings. Absolutely no regrets and we love our school and all the staff so much. Although his school is much more expensive than regular nursery schools, the investment is worth it. He gets personal attention in a small class of only 6 – 8 children whereas the average at other schools was between 20 and 25 kids per class. I think it makes all the difference knowing that his teacher can give him personal attention and he’s not just a number in a class.
Yup, we love school and the first two weeks of tears from both of us was totally worth it.