Don’t you find that each new phase and stage of childhood ushers in a whole plethora of surprises – good and bad? Sometimes it can be hard to keep up. For instance, just when I’d got used to the ways of my cute and cuddly threenager, suddenly she was four, and starting pre-k… and becoming a completely different person.
It’s taken me until now, as she’s turning five, to truly get a handle on what life with a preschooler entails. She’s on the verge of becoming a big girl (in her mind she already is) and things are set to change once again. But for the time being, I think I get you preschooler.
From chatting with other mom friends it’d seem that a lot of the traits I’ve noticed are universal.
Here are a few of the things that we’ve found to be true about our preschoolers. Let me know if you can relate!
10 things that parents know about life with a preschooler
#1 Preschoolers have perfected the art of brutal honesty
One of the interesting things about kids this age is the lack of any disconnect between what they see and what they say. They have the ability to articulate their thoughts and observations but with the absence of a filter AT ALL. Impulse control is definitely still a work in progress. Sometimes they just have to get it out.
Case in point, my daughter loves to point out mine and my husbands’ flaws these days. Apparently I have “crankly” elbows (charming!) and my husband has “sprinkles” for hair.
#2 Trying to use reason or logic to win an argument will drive you to the brink of insanity
Don’t even attempt it. Because you WILL fail. Preschoolers have a talent for twisting things and leading you down a path into surreal and impossible conversations. And once you’re there, it’s hard to get out.
Apparently it’s all to do with a frontal lobe that’s still very much in development. Emotion and instinct are dictating their decisions and thought processes – not logic. Either way, if they feel strongly about something, even your best well laid-out argument is unlikely to convince them otherwise.
#3 And please forget about trying to trick them
Not that I’m necessarily advocating trickery as a parenting tool… but… sometimes a little bit of mild deception can help to manage expectations and keep the peace. Am I wrong??
By the time they hit preschool age, our kids are sadly becoming far too wile to fall for our attempts to distract or deceive.
Our daughter is learning to read and write now, so we’ll no longer be able to spell out the words we don’t want her to hear. That marks the end of any covert plans to go to the P-O-O-L or secretly discuss important things like C-O-O-K-I-E-S.
#4 Their inner-fashionista is suddenly unleashed
Gone are the days when I could just pick out a cute, co-ordinating outfit for my daughter and that would be the end of it. No, no, no. She knows EXACTLY what she wants to wear on any given occasion. And whether it’s remotely fitting for the occasion or not is besides the point.
The level of discussion and debate that goes into getting dressed these days is ridiculous. Every article of clothing I suggest is carefully scrutinized and more often than not rejected. Yesterday’s favorite item is suddenly today’s most hated. “Noooo, not the RAINBOW socks… I wanted the UNICORN oneeeessss!!”.
#5 We’re asked to “watch this” at least 100 times a day
There is no end to the number of times my daughter will ask me to watch a certain dance move or “ninja” move OVER AND OVER AGAIN.
Apparently at this age, an audience is mandatory for every single accomplishment 🙂
#6 The questions never stop (and your answers are not always good enough)
I love that my daughter asks a lot of questions. I really do. Her brain is a little sponge at the moment, soaking up as much about the world around her as it possibly can.
I was flabbergasted when she recently asked me about nuclear energy. Apparently she’d heard her YouTube hero, DanTDM, mention it in one of his videos. I did my best to explain in rudimentary terms, but can you imagine that conversation??
At the same time, the constant questioning can also be exhausting. We’ll be watching a movie and she’ll want to know the name of every single extra appearing on the screen – ” just tell me mummeee!”.
#7 There is no limit to their imagination… and to what is possible
Not so long ago, I asked my daughter if she wanted to continue on with her ballet and tap classes for another year. I told her that she could carry on with dance, pick a different extra-curricular activity or just do nothing at all if that’s what she felt like. She answered that she’d like to continue with ballet, then do gymnastics and then become a dinosaur trainer. That is genuinely her plan!
In the mind of a preschooler, anything is possible and I LOVE that so much! I wish I could go back and regain some of that uninhibited optimism. Just imagine how amazing it would be.
#8 They’re sooo busy
One of my daughter’s favorite responses at the moment when I ask her to do something she doesn’t want to is to tell me that she’s just far too busy. And to be fair, she has a point. She goes from Lego to Magna-Tiles to drawing to exploring the back yard with barely time to catch a breath.
Not to mention the fact that she has a social life that puts my own to shame. Those party invites never stop coming!
#9 And they’re almost always running
I mean, why walk anywhere when you can run (or jump, or hop or skip)??!
I don’t know exactly how much time my preschooler spends running circuits around the house, but I know that it’s a lot. It’s often accompanied by a lot of loud shouting and little sister keeping up as best she can.
Getting an adequate amount of exercise is most definitely not a problem where our preschoolers are concerned.
#10 Life with a preschooler is never dull
My daughter cracks me up on a daily basis. Sometimes it’s deliberate and sometimes she doesn’t even realize she’s being funny. At the end of our day, my husband and I love to swap stories about the silly and often surprising things she’s said and done.
They change so much during this time. It really is a great age – becoming so worldly but at the same time retaining their little kid innocence. I’m just trying to soak up every moment as best I can, because before I know she’ll be waving to me from that yellow school bus.
What’s have you found to be most enjoyable, surprising or challenging about life with a preschooler? I’d love to hear your own experiences!