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What is Your Preschooler Learning at School?

by Joe Lawrence | December 30th, 2014 | Preschool, School

little girl (400x400)As our children start their school journey in preschool, we have high hopes and expectations. We want them to come home reading, writing, and arithmetic-ing. However, we have the tendency to set the bar too high sometimes…at least I did.

I get very excited as the work day winds down and it is time to pick my little one up from preschool.

She is always excited to see me and show me her daily projects. We then get in the car and as I ask about her day…crickets. I usually get a “fine” when I ask how her day was. I am expecting her to recite Hamlet in three different languages and a detailed description of each subject they covered. If I really probe, I get a story about chasing one of her friends.

At first, this upset me as I wrote out the monthly check to the school. However, then one day at dinner she recited the days of the week in Spanish. I asked her where she learned that from, and she said school. She was learning lots of fun things there; however, she just did not know how to communicate it.

We started this thing now on the ride home where we talk about our days in a more reflective way. I ask her about something I see in the classroom. For example, I saw your friend making a bracelet with string; do you like to do that? Then continue down that path with more questions about that.

She asks me about my day, too. I realized the first couple of times she asked me that I wanted to just say ‘fine’ as well. Since I am a flight line maintenance manager for cargo aircraft, she thinks I actually fix the airplanes and wants to know how many I fixed today. We have really been able to open a dialogue about our days that are not just shallow rundowns of the events that took place.

My current goal is to be able to have her teach me the things she learned. She has been teaching me Spanish and the months of the year. It is really fun saying the months wrong and having her correct me.

The moral to the story is that my daughter is actually learning all that I expected and much more. Her teachers are fantastic and she is learning how to fill a role on a team. When we only ask about the quality of the day that is the answer we will receive. We need to be creative and help them reflect on what they learned.

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