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College Prep -- 13 Years Early

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I don't think I'm ready for them to be ready for college.

child wearing graduation cap and gown

Dr. Sophia Grant: After my eldest child had two weeks of kindergarten under her belt, she announced that she knew everything she needed to know in life, except she didn't know how to drive, didn't work, and hadn't been to college. Apparently, she had not read Robert Fulghum's "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten." After her confession, I began to wonder where she had heard about "college." Undoubtedly, my husband and I had made numerous references to it in our everyday conversations -- so much so that she knew it was something she wanted to experience.

Years have passed since then, and my daughter is only five years from the cusp of knowing everything, although she frequently acts like she knows it all right now. She already has a job refereeing soccer, driving is just three years away, and then she'll enter the hallowed halls of academia. I came home from work recently to hear my older two children excitedly discussing their college aspirations. They talked about majors, studying abroad, and dorm life. I stayed silent, mainly because I felt nauseous. I know they will leave, but why do they have to be so happy about it? I have encouraged it. Scholarship, exploration, and a desire to experience other cultures have been talking points in my parenting these past thirteen years.

Where did my baby go?

I listened in silence and then finally asked, "Where do you think you'll go?" "Stanford," she responded. "Like Uncle Randy?" I asked. "No, like Gabriella." I looked puzzled. "From 'High School Musical,'" she explained. I smiled with relief. Even though she was talking the talk, I knew I still had my baby -- at least for a while longer. At this point, the 6-year-old chimes in, "Mommy, I'm alweady weady fo' college." Yes, Babes, everyone is ready -- except me.

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1 comments so far | Post a comment now
ame i. October 1, 2009, 8:25 AM

My older daughter (6th grade) moved to a university prep school last year for 5th grade and will remain there until she graduates high school. My now 4th grader will attend next year.
This school started a class for 3rd graders this year.
My daughters did just fine in a church-run pre-K from ages 3-5. The same goes for the K-4 public school less than a mile from our home.
The university prep school exposes children to foreign languages in 1st grade.
Our public school offers no f.l. until grade 6, students only have art/music/computer every other week.
I suppose it’s a case of 6 of one, 1/2 dozen of the other.

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