My three-year-old daughter has been in preschool twice a week for almost seven months. But many times when I show up to get her, she seems kind of dazed and out of it. I spoke with her teachers and they said that she is engaged during their structured activities but often will be by herself during the free play and sometimes zone out. The free play time is typically when I pick her up.

I also spoke to our pediatrician and he said that most likely, with her introverted personality, she has a much lower comfort level when it comes to crowds of kids running around and screaming. He said the "dazed" attitude is probably a way of coping with her discomfort. He said he didn't believe she was being harmed but his feeling toward preschool at this age is the benefits to children are minimal.

We have also looked at other preschools, but even the accredited ones have many more kids in class than her current school and I don't see her having a much different experience somewhere else.

I would like to take her out and have her go back to being with the nanny five times a week. My wife thinks that she will eventually get over this and that preschool is good for her. I'm not seeing the benefit and I'm worried that this is just continual negative reinforcement for her in terms of social interaction.

Does anyone have a similar experience that could shed some light on how we can help my daughter?

asked 03 Jun '11, 19:50

blue's gravatar image

accept rate: 26%

edited 03 Jun '11, 19:52

How old is your preschooler? 3? And the alternative is being at home with the nanny until Kindergarten? It seems like she'll eventually have to spend time around other kids one way or another. Is she enjoying it, despite being dazed? Kids at that age aren't quite playing with each other yet they way they will later.

This is probably not too relevant, but I'm happy my 2 year old is in school even though he is not too interactive yet. It's good for him to have new experiences, learn to play with new people, in a more structured environment than we can give him at home.


answered 05 Jun '11, 21:10

Anne's gravatar image

accept rate: 17%

She is 3. And I agree that keeping her with the nanny until Kindergarten doesn't sound great by today's standards. But the problem is her discomfort around large groups of kids is getting worse as opposed to better. When it comes to play dates with one or two kids at our house, she has a completely different (i.e. outgoing) personality.

(06 Jun '11, 01:55) blue

In my opinion twice a week is probably not often enough for her to get accustomed to the rather busy environment of the pre-school, particularly if she leans more towards being introverted. What happens during the rest of the days? Could you try and make any adjustments before you decide whether you should take her our of Pre-school or not?

In my opinion I think that your wife has a point and that she will grow out of it. Taking her away from that environment may just delay her becoming accustomed to it.

I think that 3 is still so very young and as Anne also stated there are benefits to being in a structured play and social environment like Pre-school. Like Anne my daughter attended a Nursery/Pre-school when she was 2 and I the benefits were remarkably visible later when she began Kinder at 4 years old, (even though I felt bad about leaving her and wondered whether she was socially ready for it. But our experience showed me that being in an environment with other children was much better for her than being home with a 'nanny' figure or a relative.

Perhaps what you can do is pick a Pre-school that will concentrate and give important to individual development and who will be more sensitive to your needs, and also will be able to monitor your daughters progress.


answered 06 Jun '11, 02:20

Emi's gravatar image

accept rate: 19%

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Asked: 03 Jun '11, 19:50

Seen: 3,622 times

Last updated: 06 Jun '11, 02:20