Now that I have a 5 year old you all must know what is next...Kindergarten. Yes Isabelle will be in kindergarten this coming fall. And I am not going to lie to you, I have really been looking forward to it. I don't really believe in the necessity of pre-school so I have yet to get any sort of extended break from her at this point and that is exactly how I like it. However, I do think about it occasionally...at times...a few times a week...daily...hourly.
I have my heart set on sending her to the french immersion program in our community. A free public school that offers her the opportunity to become fluent in a second language. A non-traditional approach to learning that really opens up the understanding of language in general. I am not an expert on the pros and cons of immersion programs but what I do know I like and sending her there is my number 1 choice. Actually I don't even have a number 2 choice.
Unfortunately I am not the only one in my community that thinks this is a great idea and so each year they choose by lottery who will get in and who will be put on the waiting list. John and I spent our date night at the french school open house and I quickly popped my application in the mail when I recieved it. I felt confident that I would get in. I mean I really, really want to get in...We didn't get in. We are number 32 on the waiting list...devestation. What to do?
I knew from talking to friends whose children are in the school that they will take kids off the waiting list through 1st grade. One of my neighbors got in mid year and made the decision to pull her son out of one school and move him to the french school. While he is doing fine now I wasn't sure I wanted to risk that difficult decision so I have made the decision to homeschool kindergarten. I spent a few days mourning the whole experience but am slowing warming to the idea and getting excited about it.
Since Isabelle really is just about ready for 1st grade in many ways I figure I only need to spend about 30 minutes a day reading to her and working on handwriting. Her birthmother happens to be fluent in french and so we are talking about a weekly french lesson over the phone. I actually have so many neighbors with children in the french school that I could probably get enough information from them to recreate the program myself!
I actually homeschooled Jake for Kindergarten and 1st grade. It was fun. I wanted a break from him too but I also knew he needed to be home with me. While I don't feel that same conviction about Isabelle and will be finding a second option for 1st grade if she doesn't eventually get in the french school, I am definately feeling that spark of excitement I had with Jake begin to ignite. I have had to tell homeschooling friends to stop telling me about various things they are doing because I refuse to actually get excited about homeschooling and see it as a long term solution. ONE YEAR ONLY! I know, famous last words.