Some of you said that you wanted to hear about the new preschool I chose for Dylan. To do that, I have to give the back story...
When I worked for The Dream Family, I tried to figure out what exactly made the two boys (age 7 and 10 at the time), such amazing kids. In all my years of working with children, I had never met such kind, respectful, creative and intelligent boys. What made them that way? Was it the parents? Was it because their mom had stayed home? Was it the other nanny, that had assisted the mom since they were born? Was it because they didn't watch TV? Or, was it the private school they attended?
I just had to know, so back in November Jim and I went to the school's Open House. As soon as we walked into the school, a delightful fifth grade boy approached us. "Hello! My name is Jack, and I'll be your tour guide". As Jim put it when someone asked if we liked the school, "They had us at "Hello"".
Jack was an amazing kid. As he took us into each room, he would introduce us to the teacher, and then stand politely to the side, while we spoke to them. Two things struck me the most during the tour. One, the enthusiasm that each teacher had for their subject. It was infectious. I told Jim, "I want to go here!"
The second thing was the way each teacher spoke to Jack. They all knew him, and commented on things that they knew he was interested in. This was not a cookie cutter, worksheet kind of place. (I despise worksheets). The kids are actively involved in their learning. They move around the room, working in groups, debating ideas, discussing solutions, and motivating each other.
For the first time in years, I actually wanted to go back to teaching. This place is MY dream school. It embodies every belief I have about education. I wanted to sign Dylan up on the spot. I was screwed.
See, the Dream Family is able to send their kids there because, well, they have Dream money, and we... uh... don't. Yes, the school offers grants and scholarships, but they are difficult to get.
I made an appointment to meet with the Director of Admissions to discuss a few things. I was in her office for an HOUR. She was delightful, as well. She spoke to me for 1/2 hour AFTER I told her we can't afford the school. A couple days later, she sent me a hand-written note, saying how much she enjoyed meeting me, and to keep her updated about Dylan. A HANDWRITTEN NOTE?!? Who does that anymore? As I mentioned, I was screwed.
Every school I went to after that paled in comparison. I was going to have to choose between Nothing At All Like The Dream School, Only Slightly Like The Dream School, and Only Somewhat Similar To The Dream School. Screwed.
(I'll continue this in the next post).