One of the things that irk me is the notion that normal, capable, intelligent mothers are somehow less competent to be in charge of their preschool children than “professionals”. I am especially bamboozled by the following myths:
- Children need daycare for socialization
Humans are social creatures, and it’s good for children to be placed in touch with all sorts of people, among them children of their own age. However, it doesn’t mean that the absolute best for such little children is to spend the chief portion of their day with their peers, without the balancing and equilibrating presence of elders and minors.
Being at home doesn’t mean living in isolation on a deserted island! There are friends, playgroups, many different activities to choose from, countless interesting places to visit if one thinks of it, and most of it costs nothing or next to nothing.
- Mothers are not competent enough to teach their preschoolers
Preschool is not rocket science. Any intelligent parent can read stories to their child, draw with them, practice simple crafts such as sticking and gluing, playdough, etc. Anyone can take their child for walks. Neither is it very difficult, a bit later, to begin teaching a child his letters and numbers. And most importantly, at home the child gets this essential touch of participating in everyday life and doing valuable jobs, which can only be unfaithfully imitated in a preschool setting.
- Problems are surely the result of the home upbringing, and will be solved by sending the child to daycare/preschool
Toddlers tantrums? Power struggles? The child is shy of strangers? No doubt all of it is caused by the fact that you are bringing up your child at home, and all would be solved if only you agreed to send your child to All-Problem-Solving Preschool – totally ignoring the fact that countless preschoolers have the very same problems, which might in fact be exacerbated by their being away from their mother all day long.