Wednesday, January 16, 2008

first day


I'm feeling so fortunate. The school system in New York is crazy competitive and expensive, and I really didn't know what to do about Dr. S and preschool. There's a whole application and interview process for most schools, and it just doesn't feel right to throw a three- or four-year-old into the middle of that sort of competition, whether they're aware of the environment or not (just my personal feelings, certainly not a judgement of others' decisions or choices). So I've been dragging my feet on the whole thing.

But just by chance, I recently learned about a co-operative preschool that's been in existence for nearly 30 years and recently lost it's space (a few times, actually) but is re-starting just blocks from our apartment. Sign us up! So I've been busy helping to get things organized, sewing curtains, scavenging our basement for discarded bookshelves, and prepping Tsia for the big day.

And she loves it! It really helped that she's been there with me as we interviewed teachers, cleaned, and assembled the materials. Yesterday she was a bit shy at first, but since she's played with several of her classmates and done some activities with Miss Jenny already, she warmed up very quickly.

The other aspect of the co-op that I love is that I get to help out at least twice a month. I love being involved and can't wait for both of us to learn and develop as a result. And hey! It wasn't even that hard to leave her, much as I feared the whole tearful mother thing. What a relief!

Oh, and Bear seems to like it, too. He goes along every day, and if he approves we know it's ok.

30 comments:

  1. She looks absolutely adorable in that outfit. She's gonna love that picture when she's older!

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  2. It is hard to imagine her doing anything but absolutely great when I look at that picture!

    I can't imagine how tough school must be there. It's frightening!

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  3. I'm so impressed that you got involved and made something happen like that. Thank goodness for people like you!
    And Tsia looks fabulous for her day at pre-school!

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  4. We LOVED co-op preschool! It was great to get to know the other families and eased the "what is she doing while I'm not there?" thing. I hope you all have a lot of fun!

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  5. she looks so adorable and happy! :)

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  6. Cooperative preschools are the best! Glad your daughter is adjusting so well.

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  7. What a great idea! We don't really have stuff like that in the mid-west. I would love to have more of a hand in the decisions of the school.

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  8. Liesl...congrats on finding the right fit for preschool. I agree--here in NYC it's utterly ridiculous when it comes to preschool. The competition is fierce.

    Your daughter is going to love it and you will enjoy the invovlement. Although my kids' preschool never required my participation, I was always up there doing something (teaching them do sewing cards, planting tulips or designing their newsletter).

    Wishing you lots of luck!

    With friendship,
    Lisa

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  9. That picture makes my heart swell! What a sweetie...that is wonderful for her! I've never even heard of a co-op preschool. Sounds neat!

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  10. She's so sweet! And I envy you your cooperative preschool. It sounds wonderful!

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  11. What a cutie! And a great opportunity for Tsia! And you too! I'm so glad that Scout is too young to worry about preschool for now. I'm thinking homeschooling might be a good idea for her! (It's my selfishness speaking. I don't want to let her go or share her with others, LOL.)

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  12. Courtney7:14 PM

    so cute. We did a coop last year and loved it. I think its the perfect transition into schooling. (for both Mom and kiddo)

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  13. Courtney7:16 PM

    PS- I'm in the Midwest (Michigan) and we have coop nurseries all over, so maybe you could find one after all Rachel (previous poster)

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  14. ooooh, I can't believe you found a co-op preschool in the city. I've worked for one in Jersey City for the past three years... and I can't think of a better environment for the kids, with the parents involved and the school a true extension of the home. Congratulations and ENJOY!

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  15. mommyo10:24 PM

    Liesl,

    Co-op preschool was such fun for my daughters....10 an 12 years ago. I enjoyed helping in the class room and in the school. It is such a precious time. I wish you both the best of times. Be well

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  16. What a relief! And, so lucky!

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  17. Yay for you both. I did a coop preschool with Leil and it was a truly wonderful experience that we both still talk about (you wonder sometimes if they'll remember anything at that age!). Have lots of fun!

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  18. How cool that you can go in and help. A co-op is not something that I think even exists over here in the UK (not for education anyways, and certainly not where I am). Tsia looks fantastic and so happy!

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  19. How wonderful you both will be able to enjoy "school". I am so glad you found the place that was really right for your daughter and you. Her hat is so cute....I want one big girl size. Happy School Daze.

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  20. co-ops are great!
    and she is adorable!
    :)

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  21. What an amazing opportunity!
    missy

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  22. Your situation brings a smile to my face. Although we homeschool and have found that to be wonderful for us, I am so glad that you've found something else that fits and just 'feels' right for your family. What a blessing you will be to that co-op and vice versa.

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  23. What a god-send. Is there anything to describe the relief you feel when you find something so beneficial (for lack of a better word) for your child?

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  24. Congratulations! My kids went to a cooperative nursery school, too. I think it really makes a difference when parents are actively involved in the classroom, especially when the kids are little. Your daughter is just darling, and looks so ready for some wonderful adventures in learning!

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  25. your life is lovely.

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  26. oh hooray! she looks so happy. i helped my sister with my niece's pre-school admission process in NYC and it was RIDICULOUS (hitting re-dial 1800 times at 7am just to get through and on the list for an application! nuts!). so happy you and Dr. S were able to avoid that wacky rat race and find a happy place for learning.

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  27. Colleen H.5:53 PM

    My twin girls were in a co-op when they were 3. We all loved it! My husband had the flexible schedule at the time and he was the one who "worked" there. It's a great way to start the school experience. Great decision!

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  28. that's one wonderful hat.

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  29. Laurel11:20 PM

    Congrats to Dr. S on her first days of school! She looks ready to face the day in the picture--so sweet.

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  30. Your daughter looks so sweet in her first day outfit!

    The competition for placement in schools is crazy. Is it just NYC or are other places as crazy? And don't even get me started on applying to colleges and all the expenses that involves with the coaches and counselors and .... My goodness!

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