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Can my three and a half years old child go to a regular school?

Q: My three and a half years old son just enrolled in the school and he only goes twice a week. He likes school but for the last week he doesn't want to go to school. His father thinks it's not right for him to go at his age and thinks we should listen to our son if he doesn't want to go. I think he needs to interact with other children. Differences in opinion causes problem in our relationship. Is three and a half years an advisable age to go to school?

A:In India, most children go to play school around 3 years and regular school at the age of 4 years. Norms in other countries may be different. Children also differ in their readiness to go to school. Usually at three years a child benefits by going to play school, as it helps not just cognitive development, but also helps the child learn social skills.

You should encourage your child to go regularly, because if you give in to his demand once or twice, he will get the message that he can avoid school if he whines.

A calm discussion with your husband would help in understanding his reasons for not wanting the child to go to school. You should not make it an ego issue, as the child's welfare is at stake.

Finally do ensure that the school environment is adequate, and there are qualified persons in charge of your child's education.

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