Kindergarten Looms

Last week a friend posted a picture on FaceBook that I can’t stop thinking about. The picture was of a tiny school desk. That desk featured a laminated sticker with a smiling apple and a very familiar name written in tidy teacher hand.

One of Yogi’s friends started kindergarten! Kindergarten! Sure, this is one of Yogi’s older friends, but still. We’re talking school here. Real school. Surely this is all too soon, isn’t it?! I think it is. I keep telling myself that I have a few years before I’m ready for a picture like that, but I’m not sure a few years will be enough. I don’t know how it could be.

Once the initial panic subsided, I went straight to my happy place. My imagination. The place where all scary things can be diffused. Oh how I love it there. No need to think of scary things that are beyond your control when you can just hang out somewhere that you made up your own damn self.

When I wasn’t following the Monk on a tour of all the things that really should be Monkey-proofed in our home, I spent the afternoon enrolling the boys in another kind of school. A hippie, neighborhood commune kind of a school. The kind where a handful of parents with totally complementary skills and personalities get together to figure out the best way to PREPARE OUR CHILDREN FOR LIFE. No big deal, right? I’m thinking small numbers here (bc let’s face it, I can’t handle lots of people), maybe 10 kids. Something like 5-ish families.

This kind of small-group model would eliminate most of my big concerns about homeschooling, at least in the early years. Everyone would get the benefit of learning from different kinds of teachers while remaining in a comfy, cozy social group. The kids could move from house to house throughout the week and of course all of the families would serve healthy, yummy lunches and snacks. Another benefit of our small size would be our ability to get outside the classroom and take trips with relative ease. And then there’s getting outside, as in the out of doors. I’ve heard some frankly harrowing things about the kind of time kids are allowed to “play” in primary school in our area and it worries me. A lot. Of course in our school we’ll be outside as much as possible.

We’ll be playing and learning and eating high quality food and perhaps gardening.

Anybody know of a place? I’ve got 2 (or 3?) years to find it or make it myself.

7 thoughts on “Kindergarten Looms

    • There is. I’ve checked into it a bit, but need to learn more. It goes through 8th grade. Have any of your guys done Waldorf? I’ve spoken only to parents with K-2ish kids. I can’t really picture how it works as the kids get older.

      • No, we don’t have one nearby. We are homeschooling starting this year, though, and using Waldorf-inspired curriculum for Asa (3rd grade). Your description of your imaginary ideal just sounded somewhat similar to their programs.

  1. Come to Charlottesville! We know of an excellent group of parents that have tried exactly that and I think are continuing AND a nearby commune if you really want to get down. In all seriousness, you might look at the nearest, crunchiest, local food store for ads or a community board or, if you have an herbalist in the area, ask her if she knows any moms with young kids that are homeschooling or thinking about it. Both types of places seem to be pretty tuned in to that.

  2. Hi, I just started reading your blog. I totally grew up with that model for preschool and I loved it! Are there any Reggio Emilia inspired schools around you? It’s a really amazing model. It’s exploration and discovery focused-child led, and very parenting and community based.

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