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Entering Kindergarten Fall 2018 - Parents Chat

  1. Kimberlybee

    grapefruit / 4995 posts

    @MrsRoo: My baby DD2 has the same name as your K, spelled exactly the same!

  2. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    Our kindy is 9:05-3:55, so a full day.

    Right now, the thought is DD will ride the bus with the other neighbors but I have major anxiety about that.

    Our girls are both in full day daycare right now - so we will be hiring a PM nanny who will scoop DD2 from pre-school (ends at 3) and be home to meet K from the bus. DH gets home around 5 and I get home around 6. Hoping to get home earlier once school starts since I wont be doing drop offs any more and can get to work earlier.

  3. MrsRoo

    pear / 1627 posts

    @Kimberlybee: great minds think alike! Love her name

  4. mdf106

    clementine / 753 posts

    Kindergarten is full day 7:45-2:45.

  5. Adira

    wonderful pomelo / 30624 posts

    I believe our kindergarten is all day (8:30-2:30), though I can't verify that right now because the district website is down!

  6. hellobeeboston

    cantaloupe / 6953 posts

    Gahh, i still can't believe this is happening!!

    1) J
    2) October
    3) Public
    4) Either bus or drop off. His school is about a 2 minute drive so he'd be the last one picked up if we do the bus.

    Our K is full day-ish... It's from around 8:30-3ish, except on Wednesday, they get out at 1ish. We have orientation in two weeks!

    We're still not sure what the new year is going to look like because our full-time nanny is moving, but she'll be around the first few months of K, and our little one will either go to preschool or daycare, still TBD... if we don't do another nanny we'll also be signing him up for after school care. Anyone else doing that too?

    I've come to realize that the entire school system timing is based around assuming one parent is home, or close to home. Both of us work an hour away full time, and it makes everything much harder!

  7. hellobeeboston

    cantaloupe / 6953 posts

    @Mrs D: we're thinking about doing this kind of set up. If our younger is in daycare preschool until 1 or 2, then a potential new nanny could grab him, and be home for school bus drop off until we get home around 6.... did you have a hard time finding a part time nanny for just 3 hours every day?

  8. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    @hellobeeboston: I got very lucky - our babysitter is the newborn room lead teacher at our girls daycare. She is the morning key holder, meaning she has a standing shift of 6:30am-2pm. Which gives her just enough time to scoop DD2 by 3pm when her pre-school gets out. She could also get from DD2 school, to the elementary school by 3:55 to scoop Kate in case I back out of my bus plans.

    So it kind of fell into place. Its an added expense, but still far cheaper than the full day care we are paying for DD1 (and DD2) right now.

    We have not worked out pay with her yet, we plan to offer her the following two options:

    1) $15/hr plus $25/week in gas/mileage. We estimate 2 hours a day. (total miles a day would be about 10)
    2) Salary $150/week...regardless except for vacations when we give 4 weeks notice.

  9. hellobeeboston

    cantaloupe / 6953 posts

    @Mrs D: amazing. Thanks for sharing. I’m hoping something like this works out for us too. Our full time nanny doesn’t move until the end of November so we have some time to figure it out 😄👍🙌

  10. Anagram

    eggplant / 11219 posts

    Joining in!

    1) Maya

    Maya has been in public pre-k in the same school district the last two years, so I hope it will be a pretty seamless transition for her. My 2 concerns are that she got assigned to a new school (I was bummed about that, because her current school goes to 2nd grade, but she got moved to a school closer to our house that is K-5), so I'm hoping she'll be okay with the new building. My 2nd concern is always the teacher. She's had 2 truly wonderful teachers in Pre-k3 and Pre-k4, so I really hope that continues next year. At this young age, making school fun and pleasant is truly the #1 priority for me. I don't have any academic concerns for her, I just want her to enjoy going to school every day.

    My second concern is about DD2. She will start public pre-k3 this next school year and now I think they won't be placed at the same campus. I was really hoping DD1 would remain in her current campus and DD2 would join her, so we would have 1 drop off and 1 pickup. Now that DD1 is in a new building, I think they will be a different schools about 5 blocks apart. My husband has to walk each kiddo to school and then catch the bus to work, so we're both worried about how 2 different drop offs will add to his morning.

    As far as after school, our current part time babysitter/nanny will not be working for us next year (she's in night school now and will graduate in May and look for a "real" job), but I'm really hoping to find someone exactly like her to pick up both girls each day and arrange play dates, give them a snack, walk them home, etc. I got lucky and found her through our former nanny...it's hard to find someone that only wants to work 10-15 hours a work, but fingers crossed we'll get lucky again.

  11. Silva

    pomelo / 5861 posts

    We are homeschooling for kindergarten, but I hope its okay if I join anyway. Right now the plan is for her to go to public in first grade, and she will be doing some of the "specials" (definitely art class, maybe also music and/or gym) at the school- so its a little bit like "part time."

    1. Thea
    2. April
    3. Homeschool, plan to transition her in first grade to Public
    4. n/a, though when she goes to specials we will drop her off and consider having her ride the bus home (since the specials happen at the very end of the day). We live maybe 1 mile from the school, but there aren't great sidewalks (rural/small town). I will have two younger ones at home, so if I can get her to feel comfortable to take the bus home it would make my life a lot easier. She'd be one of the first kids off.

  12. muffinsmuffins

    kiwi / 634 posts

    1) Child's name: C
    2) Birth month: November (December 31 cut off in Ontario Canada)
    3) Type of school: public
    4) What method of transportation? Walk/drive

    I just dropped off his paperwork today and registered him for the before school program! Crazy. And we have our second baby due literally the week school starts And DS has a speech disorder so I’m nervous. We have an open house in the spring, meet the teacher the week of school individually, then a staggered start with only 1 or 2 days going that first week.

  13. dolphin

    pomegranate / 3754 posts

    1) Child's name: I
    2) Birth month: December
    3) Type of school: public
    4) What method of transportation? Drive

    I'm kind of nervous transitioning her to a public school. She goes to a private catholic preschool right now and it's 20 kids and 2 teachers. The public school is overcrowded and will have 30 something kids and 1 teacher. Yikes.

  14. Alba4

    nectarine / 2872 posts

    1. D
    2. August
    3. Public school
    4. Bus/pickup

    I’m mostly excited for my DS. Cut off in our district is Dec 1, so he probably won’t be the youngest. He is excited to start fresh and meet kids in our town (daycare is 20 min away). He’s so ready!

  15. gingerbebe

    cantaloupe / 6131 posts

    @Mrs D: We are still a year off for kinder, but I wanted to weigh in on packing lunches, cuz I gotta pack lunch for 2 kids (and DS2 needs 2 snacks AND a water bottle in addition to lunch and milk until he's out of the toddler room!)

    The kids both have Thermos Foogo food jars for hot meals (which they get probably once a week). Its usually just leftover burrito bowl (rice, beans, meat, corn) or leftover pasta. Other times we either use our Yumboxes, which we love, but RANDOMLY one of my favorite containers the last few months have been the Target Up&UP generic brand 3-compartment containers. They don't leak (unlike the Glad and Ziploc ones I've bought in the past) and they're cheap! I can fit a sandwich, cheese stick, fruit, and carrot stick in perfect kid portions in one package and do it at night and just grab them in the morning.

    Both kids get milk in Foogo thermoses and DS2 takes a full jug of water in his Contigo straw cup (we get them cheaply in 3-packs at Costco). These are also filled up at night and we keep 2 sets around (so 4) in case we forget to wash them or something.

    After trying many different lunchbags, including PBK or whatever, these Embark ones (at Target) are the best we've found. The top-handled crush resistant one is perfect for DS1 - it fits his Yumbox (which is kinda big) or his 3-compartment food box perfectly and the milk goes right in the side. For DS2, because he needs to take more food, we use the squat lunchbox one. Again, it fits his 3-compartment tupperware thing in the bottom and all his other stuff gets piled on top.


  16. skipra

    pomegranate / 3350 posts

    I can't believe it's happening in 6 months! Omg

    1) W
    2) September
    3) public
    4) drop off

    So our town's kindergarten is a disaster. Town is undergoing some major budget issues and full day K costs 5 THOUSAND dollars but half day is free so parents have to pay that much for just 2.5 extra hours. It's insane. Plus they don't offer free K at all the elementary schools, only 2 so you have to pay if you want all your kids to go to the same school. We are just disgusted by the state of things and are thinking about moving. Oh and the elementary we're assigned to has lead in the water. My LO is turning 6 so just missed this current K class otherwise we would hold him back to figure out a better option!

  17. Anagram

    eggplant / 11219 posts

    @skipra: @dolphin: Where do you all live? Both of your districts sound like a hot mess. That would make me so upset as a parent!

  18. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    @gingerbebe: So I shopped some sales this month and have bought a few lunch boxes to try out. Right now I have 2 small planetbox ones, 2 small lunch bots ones, and 2 foogo food jars. I also snagged a PB lunch box during the presidents day sale because it was 1) pretty cheap and 2) purple with unicorns which is basically DDs dream scenario... haha

    Next week I am doing their first lunch - going to try out mini corndog bites. We'll see how it goes over.

    In my mind, my plan is to let them each buy lunch one day a week. Then left overs one day, special item one day (mini pizzas, mini corndogs, etc), and sandwich or homemade lunchable two days. We'll see...

  19. JCCovi

    apricot / 433 posts

    I just mailed my tuition deposit in for K! I’m a little stressed because the school hasn’t accepted my son into their Pre program yet. I had every impression during my tours that if we applied on time he would get in, but now I’m worried.

    Our K program is 9-2:45 which I considered full day until I read this thread! Looks like quite a few programs are longer!

  20. Mrs. Carrot

    blogger / persimmon / 1492 posts

    A few folks touched on this but I'm wondering for those who work full time, what you'll be doing after school, and what are you thinking for next summer since there won't be a daycare option anymore. There's a huge demand for aftercare in our area, so we may not even get a spot, and for summers I know folks do camps, but for 2 full months, it seems like a lot?

  21. Adira

    wonderful pomelo / 30624 posts

    @Mrs. Carrot: Our YMCA offers before and after school care at our particular elementary school, so we'll be using them. I'm actually thinking of changing my work schedule so that we won't need after school care, but it's still an option.

    As for summers, I haven't figured this out yet, but our YMCA offers a summer camp - it's not overnight or anything, just during the day, very similar to daycare. BUT I'm going to look into seeing if my daycare will accept my son just during the summer - I know they currently accept school-age kids as they also provide before/after-care for one of the local elementary schools. Ideally, I'm hoping they'll accept my son just for the summer while my youngest is still in daycare. Then once they are both in school, we'll switch to the YMCA summer camp. If my daycare won't accept him (because we don' t use their before/after-care year-round), then we'll have to go the YMCA summer camp route for the summer.

  22. gingerbebe

    cantaloupe / 6131 posts

    @Mrs D: Yeah we do a pretty basic rotation of things. I'd say most of the time its:

    1. Homemade Lunchables
    2. Sandwich
    3. Quesadilla eaten cold
    4. Hot leftovers in the food jar.
    5. Breakfast for lunch (sausage, mini pancakes).
    6. Cold leftover pizza.

    Then on the side they get milk, a fruit, cheese, and a veg. (Well not DS2 because he's refused to eat vegetables for months now). Usually some berries or clementine or grapes, plus a string cheese and some baby carrots, olives, persian cucumber, and pickles. On hot food jar days, I try to jam veg into the entree (for example, if I'm reheating spaghetti, I'll throw frozen peas in there when I nuke it, or if its taco rice, then I'll put in rice, beans, corn, and taco meat).

    Most nights I try to get all or most of lunch packed while I'll plating up dinner for the kids. If I'm already cutting grapes and serving carrots with dinner, its going in the lunch container. If we're having tacos for dinner, I start making a quesadilla for lunch the next day while I have all the junk out and plan to send leftover taco rice 2 days later.

    Because there will always be 1 day a week where I just cannot deal, I keep convenience foods on hand in small amounts to be able to throw something together in 30 seconds. I also always keep string cheese, Babybels, turkey pepperoni, salami, and deli meat at home. I keep some shelf stable milks and pouches in the fridge in our garage and a box of reduced sugar whole wheat Uncrustables (our school is currently peanut friendly). And every few weeks I'll take 20 minutes and portion out snacks into small Ziploc bags - pretzels, raisins, etc. - so I can throw them in at the last second.

  23. Anagram

    eggplant / 11219 posts

    @Mrs. Carrot: all the families I know with two working parents do either "summer camp" programs at a daycare (DD2s daycare offers summer camp to older school age kids), summer camp at a standalone camp (these are bussed and tend to by pricey), smaller camps (dance camps, sports camps, theater camps) in combination with sitters that pick them up, etc.

    Since I'm a teacher, I have most of the summer off, but I'm still signing up DD1 for a few week long camps, plus we are taking a few vacations.

  24. bushelandapeck

    pomelo / 5720 posts

    1) C
    2) August (8/31 cutoff but we held him out of K last year sso he will be 6)
    3) Public
    4) Drive and bus (if he will go on it)

    We have half day free K but will be paying for full day which is 8:15-2:45pm. Every Weds is a half day and kids get out at 12:45pm. We already submitted the paperwork and are awaiting screening in April.

    As for lunch, I will probably send it with him like I do now for preschool. He's a little bit rigid about some things and usually wants the same lunch everyday. We'll see if that changes when he gets to K. I may let him look at the menu and pick a day he wants to buy lunch, depending on what is offered.

    I work part time and we have a nanny who will continue to care for my younger two when I'm working so summers/vacations won't be an issue for us at this point.

  25. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    @Mrs. Carrot: I have already touched on what we are doing, but may not have done so concisely for the school year. For reference, DH and I both WOH f/t. DH is an atty on billable hours so he has great flexibility (unless he has a meeting) and I have some flexibility but will be getting better I suspect as I build more trust at my current job (just started in Nov)

    School Year: DD1 will ride the bus, DH will get her on the bus around 8/8:20. My hope is DH takes DD2 to pre-school also to avoid before care. Her school starts at 9. After school, DD2 will be picked up by PM nanny at 3pm, then they will meet DD1 at the bus stop (or pick DD1 up). DH will be home at 5 to relieve the nanny.

    Summers: DD2's preschool offers a summer program, we will likely do this next year. DD1 gets out mid June, and goes back the first week in Sept. So 10 weeks essentially. There are 3 places I would like to do weeklong camps. We will also take 2 week long family vacations. So I am left with 5 weeks....maybe I'll find a high school or college student who wants PT work. My only issue with that is them driving the girls around...

  26. dolphin

    pomegranate / 3754 posts

    @Anagram: Chicago! Yup it’s a mess. All Chicago public schools are overcrowded.

  27. ValentineMommy

    pomelo / 5789 posts

    I can't believe I'm joining....

    1) Desmond
    2) February
    3) Public, half day
    4) Drop off

    Our registration was last week. I can't believe my baby is 5!!!!

  28. Silva

    pomelo / 5861 posts

    @Mrs D: @gingerbebe: we send lunch to preschool and my daughter eats the same thing almost every single day (well, she goes 3x/week). Whatever. She eats it.
    Turkey wrap (turkey, mayo, pickles)
    Hummus (either the individual packs from costco or i throw some in a small container) & peppers/carrots cut up
    Fruit (either some peeled clementines, berries, maybe applesauce pouches, whatever we have).

    I used to send milk but after we forgot the foogo cup there one weekend in her cubby and I had to clean it out I decided she drinks enough milk at home.

    They have 20 minutes to eat and she usually runs out of time before she finishes everything (but she is a notoriously slow eater at school).

  29. muffinsmuffins

    kiwi / 634 posts

    @Mrs. Carrot: my coworker with 2 kids does a mix of summer camps, grandparents take the kids and his wife and him split their vacation separately so it’s not like the kids are going to camp all summer and it’s not so expensive. Kinda sucks they have to split up their vacation times but he saves his 3 weeks and alternates it.

  30. Mrs D

    grapefruit / 4545 posts

    @Silva: Ya, K is SO slow at home. But at school, they tell me she does well...no issues. So it'll be interesting to see how she does.

    I'm starting to send 1 meal a week starting next week...I may up that to 1 lunch and 1 breakfast a week over time (I have been increasingly unhappy with the daycares meals).

    Whats weird is K just does NOT eat sandwiches other than PBJ. I'm trying to shift her from her current carb heavy diet to a more balanced on. I suspect I will fall into a routine and will be sending lots of the same.

    I also got some of the itzy ritzy re-usable bags to use for sanwiches and snacks.

  31. gingerbebe

    cantaloupe / 6131 posts

    @Mrs D: My 3.5 year old went through that with the sandwiches. I have no idea why the concept weirds him out, but its taken us a long time to introduce different things. He actually resisted ANY sandwich including PBJs FOREVER. Then he would eat PBJs finally.

    He didn't eat turkey/ham and cheese sandwiches even though I knew he liked ham or hot dogs by themselves and it pissed me off so much. Then I realized he didn't like the cheese! He would eat string cheese by itself, but he didn't like cheese in his sandwich for some odd reason (and still doesn't like American cheese at all, although he will eat mac n cheese, go figure). He really liked hot dog wieners at that point (my kids have issues with cuts of meat for some reason, it has to be ground up), so I actually started trying bologna sandwiches (my logic was that it was a flat hot dog), and it clicked! So then he would accept sandwiches with deli meat in them with a cheese stick on the side.

    A lot of kids in his class were getting salami and cheese sent to school for their lunches and he liked pepperoni pizza, so we were able to get him to take Lunchable type meals that way. Whole wheat crackers, some turkey pepperoni or salami, and a cheese stick.

    Another variation that has worked is bagel sandwiches. I just pack half a bagel with cream cheese and reduced sugar jam and he'll eat that because its a bagel. (If I tried cream cheese and jam on a sandwich he'd be like WTF).

    He also accepted quesadillas but I think its mostly because his friends were packing them to school. But so great to be able to jam in some meat and cheese and spinach or something!

    Our breakfast lunches are silver dollar pancake sandwiches with a turkey sausage patty or Canadian bacon slice in between. He's seen us eat breakfast sandwiches on the weekend enough where he's accept those too.

    Like JUST recently he's been okay with hamburgers. But it has to be like JUST a patty on a bun with ketchup, pickles on the side. No cheese. He acted interested IN hamburgers for a while but then would take one nibble of a bun and not eat it. Drove me BONKERS because if we were out, we'd have to throw it away or if we were home, I'm like dude, that's grassfed beef EAT IT. So I finally just started keeping a package of frozen White Castle burgers in the freezer and would hand him one with ketchup any time we were going to have burgers so that I was less pissed off about the waste. And then like 2 weeks ago something clicked and we were at In n Out and he actually ate an entire burger. Since then, he's been down with it.

    Kids are so weird.

  32. Becky

    kiwi / 631 posts

    @Mrs. Carrot: Because DD2 will still be at daycare, we may send DD1 there over the summer as well (they do up to age 12 year round, so we can use them for school holidays as well). I think there are camp options in our town starting at age 5 which we could also consider (basically rec programs and some sports camps). We are trying a few days at a YMCA camp the next town over this summer so maybe we will go that route instead. We have a lot of options which is great!

    Also for after school I’ve heard that the younger elementary kids often do the B&G Club right at the school for before and after care, and the older elementary (age 8+) often do the club that is at its own separate building. We would do the at school program this year if we don’t have her get on/off at our daycare.

  33. travellingbee

    hostess / papaya / 10218 posts

    1) L
    2) March
    3) Public school, and he went to pre-k there so it won’t be much of a transition
    4) I’ll be dropping him off but he’ll take a day care van to after school care. He’s been doing that this year too and it’s worked well.

  34. skipra

    pomegranate / 3350 posts

    @Anagram: our district is actually supposedly decent! But so many issues compared to the neighboring districts. We are in a Boston suburb.
    @bushelandapeck: your district set up sounds almost the same as ours. Wonder if we live near each other? We don't have buses so probably not the same town.

  35. bushelandapeck

    pomelo / 5720 posts

    @skipra: our school is not than 2 miles from our house so we are entitled to a bus (less than 2 miles and you aren’t) but I doubt my son is going to take it. We are Middlesex county, near Stoneham and Wakefield (but not those towns). Not sure where you guys are?

  36. Anagram

    eggplant / 11219 posts

    @Mrs D: I've been packing my kid's lunch for...well, since LO started eating solids and the number #1 best time saving tip for me is that when I make dinner the night before, I make extra and I pack the kids lunch at the same time, and it's the same thing. So if we are having chicken, broccoli, and sweet potato fries for dinner (that's what we had last night), I also pack their insulated lunch bowls with the same thing. Since they are eating breakfast the next morning (and a morning snack at school), they aren't "repeating" a meal.

    It's a huge time saver for me, because I'm only making one meal and I also find that the lunches tend to be more healthy than they would be otherwise.

  37. skipra

    pomegranate / 3350 posts

    @bushelandapeck: I think we are in the same town!

    And based on the fact that you are busy eligible I think our kids will be in the same school!

  38. Adira

    wonderful pomelo / 30624 posts

    Our district finally posted the registration dates! We go April 5th to register Xander!!!

  39. LuLu Mom

    GOLD / wonderful olive / 19030 posts

    1) Emerson (Emme)
    2) October (2012)
    3) Type of school: Public
    4) What method of transportation? Drop off

    We actually are in the thick of it now, tonight we have the parent's meeting and tomorrow is kindergarten roundup where she gets to go for 2 hours and be with her teacher and learn what this new school is all about. She's super excited, I'm excited and sad and all the emotions of sending my first off to "real" school.

  40. Silva

    pomelo / 5861 posts

    WE picked up our registration packet, I need to email the principal to figure out our part time schedule. I'm undecided about going to the informational meetings. They do offer two playdates over the summer that I will probably take her to if the dates work for us.

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