As a parent, I know that I will make a lot of tough decisions regarding my children. Which daycare is best, which school is best, which friends should we steer away from. The one that I was totally caught off guard for was whether or not to send Hudson to Young Fives.
A few weeks ago we brought Hudson to kindergarten round up. Last week we received the assessment in the mail. "Based on the assessment, your child has been selected to participate in the Young Fives program." I was reading it out loud to Hudson and Mike and I had to stop mid sentence. It wasn't what I expected. We didn't even know to considered Young Fives. All of Hudson's conferences were positive and he seemed ready. I called the school the next day and talked to the school's counselor. She said that she had a question mark between Kindergarten and Young Fives. Academically he was ready for Kindergarten. But he giggled a lot (he's 4!) and looked at other kids before speaking. He made a 'b' instead of a 'd' in his name (which, coincidentally, Carson had done on a homework assignment the day before (we saw it erased out)). And that is why they recommended Young Fives. I talked about it that evening with Mike and we decided we were still going to send him to Kindergarten. Kindergarten was an all day program, that meant no extra fee for after school childcare (Young Fives is half day). I decided to talk to our neighbor (she had sent her son Young Fives the year before), the school principal and some people at work. During the week, I talked with 19 people. Perhaps it was overkill, but they all gave me different insight. I had thought Young Fives was for children with September - December birthdays. Turns out, for boys, that birthday starts in June. To be the youngest one in the class, and sent to kindergarten unprepared or a little bit 'not ready' leads to kids trying to constantly catch up in school. In middle school, teachers and parents can tell the difference between the older kids in the class, and the younger ones (immaturity, lower grades, etc). Now, I know this doesn't apply across the board, so I had to figure out where Hudson fit into all of this.
We have constantly struggled with his potty training (#2, TMI sorry!). His personality is much different than Carson's, so it requires different parenting, and we haven't quite figured it out yet. This leads to constant reminders over and over to do something, and it only get done with 100% supervision.
The beginning of the week was Kindergarten all the way, by Friday, it had turned into Young Fives. Wish I could know now if this was the right decision. As the principal told me, nobody regrets sending their children to Young Fives, they only regret not sending them.
Now I just have to convince Hudson...