Our childcare situation is changing in January (yet again). Right now our older daughter (4 on 10/31) is at daycare/preschool full time 3 days per week, and with my parents the other 2 days. Our younger daughter is there once per week, and with my parents 2 days and my in-laws 2 days.

In January both girls will need to go to daycare/preschool twice per week, Monday and Friday. The other 3 days the grandparents can watch them. It would likely be my parents 2 days, and my in-laws 2 days.

My question is, is 2 days of preschool enough? We are holding her back a year (so she will go to K in September 2019, and will turn 6 that Halloween--our cutoff is December 1st), so she would be there another 2 years. Cost is definitely a factor: sending her an extra day would be about $200 more per month, or an extra $5,000 over 2 years.

All 4 grandparents involved are well-educated, and retired healthcare professionals to boot (RNs, PTs, and OTs). They are willing to take the girls to their extracurriculars if they fall outside of school days (swimming and gymnastics, which school usually takes them to). They also take them to preschool library events (story and craft hours which are usually weekly in the winter, and special events like reptile shows which are more like quarterly). Something lacking at school that the grandparents are big on is outdoor time: lots of unstructured outdoor play year-round, vegetable and flower gardening, playing in the snow, walking in the woods (both have acreage), catching critters (bugs, frogs, snakes, butterflies in the yard, woods, and creeks), etc. They also involve them in cooking and to a lesser extent cleaning. Also my parents at least taught me to read, not school (we didn't have pre-k). These are all things I wish daycare did, but unfortunately we only have access to more traditional options (although I LOVE my daughter's new pre-K teacher). And one little thing is that they only get like an hour or 1.5 for nap/rest time and my daughter needs much more.

Has anyone done just 2 days of preschool (or chosen a more home-based route), and if so did your littles transition to public kindergarten well? Were there challenges or deficits when they went started school full-time?