Why I love my son's preschool teachers

Some people wrestle with the idea of sending their kid to daycare/preschool/whathaveyou. Whether it's because I grew up in a home daycare and was thus comfortable with the idea of preschool, or knew that my threshold for shenanigans in unusually low,  I understood that little EK would be bonding with childcare providers  from ages 3 mos to 5.

After procrastinating "the search" for months, I met with one provider who, after I requested references, informed me, "if you don't trust me with your child, you shouldn't come here." Alrighty then, you're insane, lady.

Then, as luck would have it, a post appeared on Chicago's Neighborhood Parent Network for For Your Child Preschool (FYC). This isn't an ad for FYC, this is me giving credit where credit is due.

On EK's first day in the inf ant room, I cried. Well, not really. I forced a sniffle because I thought I was supposed to. And he came home smelling like other women Mondays through Wednesdays.

When he moved to the toddler room, I struggled a bit. This transition signaled the end of babyhood and beginning of hell little personhood. Plus, the room reminded me of Lord of the Flies. Seriously, two-year-olds are CRAZY PEOPLE. And he still came home smelling like other women.

Next up, the preschool room where EK learned the days of the week, how diggers work and made us more art than our burn pile could ever accommodate  I could ever imagine.

EK loves his friends and teachers;  they are his extended family. He constantly invites them over and asks every stranger he meets if he or she knows "his best friend, Quinny," or if he/she wants to "visit his red school so [he] can introduce you to my classmates ". EVERY.SINGLE.STRANGER.

Of course we engage, play with, and taunt our kid, but many of his successes are due to the hard work and love shown by his teachers.  And yes, he still comes home smelling like other ladies; these teachers spend enough of their day hugging him that their perfume rubs off on his grubby shirts. Cue mom's daily  sappy-heart EXPLOSION.

Today marks his last day in the preschool room: Next stop,  pre-K. I am not sure how I feel about the separation of ages by room; I am confident that his teachers could manage a group of mixed ages with ease. But this is how it's organized and it works for us. I found myself sad this morning, thinking about another seemingly small, but symbolic change that is about to take place in EK's life. Tomorrow he will be sprouting armpit hair and smelling up the place.

But then I re-watched the below video Miss Sarah sent me yesterday, and  reminded myself that our parenting philosophy centers on providing our kid with the confidence and courage to get himself out the door.

And with so much appreciation for his teachers, I think we are doing OK.

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    Annie Swingen

    Chicago-based hyperbole enthusiast. Mom to a kid and sometimes my mom. Overboard (1987) obsessed weirdo. I like the funnies in life.

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