All You Ever Need to Know About Kindergarten

November 12, 2013 § Leave a comment

Anyone who knows me knows that I combat stress with planning. More stress = more planning. This explains why I created the “Hiram Kindergarten Plan” when he was two.  

To my credit, there were actually some interesting things to do right away on this Kindergarten plan I made. Most notably:  

  1. Figure out which school Hiram would “default” into
  2. Tour that school to see if I need to create a “move to a new house” plan

Happily, two years later, we are still in our same house. But that doesn’t mean the project plan is finished. No way! I’m way too stressed about kindergarten to stop planning now.

One thing I can say about Minneapolis Schools, there are plenty of options. Charter schools, community schools, magnet schools, dual immersion schools. They are not kidding around! Once I knew we had one good option for Kindergarten, I set out to see if I could find anything better. With only 880 days left to decide, I figured we had no time to waste! I sent Brad to the Minneapolis School Fair while I stayed home with Eldyn who had just been born.

Brad took Hiram to this fair and came home with very big eyes and a very long face. “Useless” he said. Then he said there were enough school booths to fill the entire convention center and it was impossible to decide anything based on your 4 seconds with whichever volunteer was available to hand you a pamphlet.

At this point, I started to panic. Enough booths to fill the convention center?! Finding the perfect kindergarten was going to be like finding  Hiram at the Chutes and Ladders playground on a Sunday afternoon. I started to resent our house in Minneapolis. Stinky Minneapolis schools. All these silly choices and wait lists and booths in a convention center. Why can’t we just live in a suburb and have someone give us a handful of viable options? That way we could avoid all the:  

  1. Pressure to find the perfect kindergarten
  2. Feelings of guilt if (when?!) we picked the wrong one

After feeling grumpy about this for a number of months, I gave myself a pep talk. If we’re not going to move then we better get a better attitude about this abundance of choice! Make the best of it! Trust ourselves to do it right! I went back to my project plan with three goals in mind:

  1. Acknowledge that this is overwhelming and break it into steps that aren’t
  2. Appreciate the fact that we have amazing options
  3. Enjoy the process of finding a place where Hiram will love to learn

I’m going to start a little series of updates about this process and track them here. We’ve already toured two more schools (2 down, 5? to go) so stay tuned for a flurry of updates over the next few days.

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