Preschool to Kindergarten: One Family’s Experience
Soon we’ll be inviting the parents of our older preschoolers to apply for kindergarten. They’ll need to let us know by February whether they’ll be continuing at The Meher Schools or transferring to a different school. More than half of our preschoolers typically “graduate” to our kindergarten program.
In preschool the children have flourished with the philosophy that love nurtures learning, and we continue with that approach in our elementary school.
We know there are a lot of factors to consider when deciding where to send your child for kindergarten. Two questions that come up most often are “What is kindergarten like at The Meher Schools?” and “What is the transition like from preschool to kindergarten?” For a parent’s perspective, we asked Jamie, the mother of one of our kindergartners, to share her family’s experience. Her daughter Lizzie is in Room 8, where three teachers play complementary roles in implementing the stimulating curriculum.
Why did you decide to keep Lizzie at The Meher Schools for kindergarten?
We really appreciate and value the “whole person” approach and didn't want a school that was just focused on academics. We love that Lizzie has grown so aware of her feelings and emotional needs at such a young age, and we really value the interpersonal and “soft” skills the school teaches. We felt it extremely important at this young age to continue on this path and that this would be an important foundation for all future learning.
How was the transition?
The transition was so smooth! Lizzie had some preschool friends continue on, and that's been wonderful. And the ability to spend the summer in her new classroom was really great. The school does a nice job of allowing families to get a little time with their new teachers. We had a kindergarten potluck before they moved to their new rooms. This helped ease Lizzie’s (and our!) anxiety before the big move! I love how they ease the kiddos into the concept of homework in such a low-pressure and fun way. The White Pony gave her a wonderful foundation for independence, and it's just increasing now in kindergarten.
What you and Lizzie like so far about kindergarten?
The list is long. We love her supportive teachers – supportive not just of Lizzie but of our younger, special-needs daughter as well as Eli (Jamie’s husband) and me. I love that she's learning so many important social skills. There's a lot of compromising, learning how to be a good friend, and general care and empathy for others. They emphasize inclusion and kindness. She is learning life lessons that many adults have yet to learn or perfect!
Lizzie has loved all of the science lessons and comes home gushing about garden class, drama class, and her new favorite – chorus!
We love being a part of this community and have loved so many of the new families we’ve met! Not only do I see lifelong friendships for Lizzie, but I see lifelong friendships for Eli and me!