ERIC Number: ED254343
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Oct
Reference Count: 0
Today's Parents Want It All for Their Preschool Children.
In contrast to the traditional curriculum for young children, a strong movement has recently encouraged children's starting formal, academic learning at an early age. This document describes three visits to preschool classes to illustrate the academic nature of classes today. In the kindergarten class visited, the whole class completed worksheets on simple subtraction and then divided into three reading groups. Two groups did workbook pages while the third group worked with a student teacher. During the visit to a Project Head Start classroom, 3- to 4-year-olds learned number concepts, shapes, and colors, and practiced writing the numeral 2. In the third classroom, a private preschool with an enrollment of ten 4-year-olds, the class dictated an experience story to the teacher and then read it over several times. Results of a survey sent to the parents of children in nursery schools, day care centers, and Head Start programs throughout South Dakota revealed that these parents, like those in other states, "want it all" for their children. According to the survey, parents reported that 3- to 4-year-olds need traditional play experiences, but they also need to begin reading, writing, and math along with learning to sit still, listen attentively, and do seat work. It is suggested that parents want children to learn the skills they perceive to be necessary for entering kindergarten and that early childhood educators need to give serious thought to this apparently national shift in parent expectations. (CB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Project Head Start; South Dakota
Note: Paper presented at the Meeting of the Northern Rocky Mountain ERA (Jackson Hole, WY, October 4-6, 1984).