I finally found a preschool option that works for us logistically, is affordable (though I am still adjusting to the very concept of having to pay for preschool education) and works for the smallest Pict. We went for a tour last week and he was automatically at ease there, joining in with a Whale Watch lesson (including clambering inside a life-size blow up humpback whale!) and participating alongside all the other kids, which made me feel confident it was a good fit for him. So we signed up, filled out the forms, paid the fees and he started yesterday. He is excited to find that he has homework just like his big brothers and he has loved all of the activities there so far – though I am writing this on Day 2 so my optimism about his levels of enthusiasm could be a bit previous.
It feels like a really positive step to getting back to normality to have all of the kids in some form of education now. They thrive on structure and routine and stimulus and school and preschool automatically provide that for them. They also need socialization in an educational context, learning alongside and from their peers, bouncing ideas around. Homeschooling the 4 year old on his own was never going to fill that gap. I think he and I already appreciate having a bit of separation between us, some independent time, after spending the last few months together 24/7 without a break.
Here’s a photo of him on his second day of school (because I forgot I could use my phone to take a photo of him yesterday on his first day).
He is now napping on the sofa in the middle of the afternoon. He hasn’t napped – unless ill – since babyhood. This does not bode well for tonight. However, it does suggest he is mentally and physically drained from two days of preschool and that is a good thing.