Friday, December 7, 2012

My 2.5 year old has trouble with her classmates

Dear Kay,

Jana is 2.5 years old. I am a dentist but stopped working since I had Jana. We live in Egypt and I wanted Jana to have an American education so I didn't have so many options for a playschool. She joined a school but since there wasn't anyone else enrolled for the pre-k class they put her in the kg-1 class and they told me that its good for her to be around older kids and that it will encourage her development.But all the rest of the kids who are ages 3 to 5 are more developed than her and she has started school last week and she still has trouble playing with them and cant call them with their names,if she wants to call a kid she calls him baby.

And of course as its her first time to go to school, I stayed with her in the classroom for the first day and the second day I wanted to leave her for some time but they told me to leave her for the whole day. Its her 5th day today and she doesn't stop crying. And the school doesn't want me to go in to the classroom with her,but I wanna go just to let her feel secured and then tell her that she has to stay for school and when she'll finish mommy will come to pick her up. But they don't want me to do that and just leave the classroom when she's busy and not tell her that I'm leaving, but I'm afraid that that would make her lose faith in me.
And I'm really doubting their strategy to deal with her when she's crying, they wanna leave her so they she'd feel left out and missing out on the fun stuff so she'd be motivated to stop crying and join in .But I think she's crying coz she's feeling scared in a classroom filled with a bunch of strangers and that she needs to be comforted and secured rather than being left out.

I am afraid that they cant deal with a child Jana's age, If you feel that this is the case from what I've told you please tell me. I don't want to traumatize her and make her hate school. I want school to be a fun experience for her. Please tell me what to do .
Very thankful for your help.
Nancy



Dear Nancy:

We are talking about a 2.5 year old here. Stop letting others tell you what is best for your child. You have good mothering instincts from what you write to me. Follow your heart. You won't have any regrets, not following your heart you will have many.

Children's sense of time is much different than ours. For them 8 hours is a like a year to us. If you have a choice keep her with you as you are writing like you want to anyway. You will never get these days back and again and do not need to remember her crying through these days.

If you do later decide to put her into care, there are things you can do to minimize her stress. Sending her with a picture of you, a favorite piece of cloth with your smell on it, a favorite toy or blanket. Massage is a good stress reducer as well.

Mostly trust your instincts not what others tell you!

Best Wishes!
M Kay Keller