preschool is fun or is it?!

my lion began preschool in september. he goes for three hours, twice a week. he started the year with great enthusiasm, excitement and joy, but that honeymoon period seems have come to an abrupt end.
i kinda thought it might.

lion is still eager to go, but it’s what i hear from his teachers that has me a tiny bit worried. apparently, he doesn’t talk very much and is very quiet, even with his peers. which, for a 3 year old isn’t unusual, but lion is a pretty chatty guy with the people he interacts with regularly. also, he is apparently sitting back a lot from activities, choosing to watch rather than participate. again, not really a big deal considering his age, but he says he feels sad and that’s why he’s not participating.
that kinda breaks my heart.

and, the fact that the teachers are bringing it up, worries me. 
i’ve tried chatting casually with lion about preschool. i have tried asking specific questions, but it is impossible to get any clear answers from him. he contradicts himself in a sincere way that only a small child can. 

a couple of weeks ago dear hubby and i spent a small portion of the morning at the preschool playing with the kids and chatting with the teachers. lion was happy to have us, as he showed us all sorts of wonderful toys he gets to play with.

as his mama, i want to do what’s best for him, without pushing him too much. finding that balance, knowing when to push and when not to, is such a tricky dance i seem to be doing all the time with the kids. as a mama, i want my kids to feel challenged, but supported. it’s ok for them to feel apprehensive about new situations and people, i just don’t want them to feel debilitated by those feelings of fear or anxiety causing them to choose not to participate in activities.

to help him feel more grounded, dear hubby has been sleeping on the bottom bunk with him for a couple of weeks. sometimes i think the kids need indirect support, care and love, which co-sleeping allows us to do. i remember going through phases in my childhood, where i would curl into my parents bed.

sometimes these things are phases, and sometimes these things are personality traits. either way, i just hope my lion feels supported at home.
i have such love and pride for him.


xo, mama lola
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  1. says

    Hey Mama,

    My son had something very similar, but he was a bit anxious prior to preschool. Is this the case for your son?

    My son also sat back and watched and didn’t really participate until the end of the year. When he did – the teacher almost fell over. As with the case of my son, I think it has to be his decision on what he wants to do. Once he decides, perhaps – he will give it the all go.

    I didn’t worry about it too much. The teachers didn’t worry about it too much. It might be a personality thing – but you know your son better than anyone. Listen to your inner woman wisdom. She will know what to do.

    • says

      thanks, lisa. always such kind supportive words from you!!
      no, my little guy wasn’t anxious at all before starting. that’s why i am little surprised, but i guess i’m not really. his older brother struggles with anxiety so that’s why it’s weighing more on my mind and heart.

  2. says

    I know what you mean about the fine line between pushing them and just supporting them. I struggle with that all the time! But your little guy might just be on the quiet side. You’re supporting him, being there for him. Hopefully he will feel more comfortable as the year goes on. Good luck!

  3. says

    I feel for your little guy. My son will be 3 in a couple weeks and he’s been going to the same pre-school since last year with a break in the summer. He had no problem at all last year and was ok for a bit this year but now he won’t go. I’ve tried to take him and he has major meltdowns every time I bring him. He says he’s scared of the classroom and doesn’t like the teachers even though they’re the same except for one teacher. Because I don’t ‘need’ him to go (meaning that I stay at home with the kids) I feel horrible leaving him there to cry so I just stopped bringing him. It breaks my heart too. These little guys are just trying to figure it all out I guess!

  4. says

    I recently left a 20 year career as an early childhood educator and I have seen all sorts of children interacting and participating in all sorts of ways.

    I think the way you’re proceeding is lovely. Give him time, support, and love.

    Did the early childhood educators have any suggestions as to how they can support him? (i.e. incorporating his absolute favourite activities into the curriculum, the stories they select, the songs they sing, etc.).

    Wishing you a lovely day (and many hugs).