Brooke Burke Blogs About Switching Rain's Preschool

03/25/2009 at 01:00 PM ET

It seems like just yesterday that Heaven Rain Charvet — the 2-year-old daughter of Brooke Burke and David Charvet — was gearing up to start preschool, and already she’s a well-travelled student! In a recent blog entry, Brooke writes that “although Rain was very happy at her other school” the couple made the decision to enroll her in a new program that offers early Jewish education. Brooke’s older daughters Neriah, 9 and Sierra Sky, 6 ½, both attended a Jewish Early Childhood Center (ECC) “and the program was full of love and valuable lessons,” she writes. “David and I felt that the new place would be a better choice for our family.”

The new school brought with it some big changes for Rain. A longer day — 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. — meant that naptime would now take place at school, and of course there would be new teachers to meet and new friends to make. Brooke says her youngest daughter made the transition with ease, however, thanks to some thoughtful prep-work by her parents. “Friday I spent the afternoon with Rain at the school for a special event, which helped to familiarize her with the area,” Brooke explains. “I spoke a little with her over the weekend about her going to a new school , and mentioned her teachers’ names several times.”

“We … packed lunch together and chatted about eating with new friends. I think ‘fun talk’ about anything new is super important, and a well prepared child adjusts much easier.”

Neriah adjusted to preschool with ease, while Sierra took a bit more time to warm-up to her new surroundings. Rain, Brooke reveals, “approached the day with enthusiasm!”

“She kissed me goodbye, and I watched my phone for the next two hours thinking she may need me. She didn’t. It was harder for me than her, which I have found to be true in many cases. I picked up a happy Rain, and I was so proud of her and how well adjusted she is.”

Noting that “every child is different,” Brooke admits that she, herself, was “kicked out of many preschools” because she simply “could not adjust.” She goes on to advise readers to “hang in there if you are going through this tough stage, and count your blessing if you are flying through it!”

In addition to the girls, Brooke is mom to 12 ½-month-old Shaya Braven.

Source: Baboosh Baby

FILED UNDER: News , Parenting

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Showing 45 comments

JMO on

That’s a long “preschool” day for a 2 yr old. But I guess it’s no different then if your child goes to daycare all day.

Sanja on

I find it ridiculous that people call it preschool for a two year old. It’s daycare at that age. They don’t start real preschool (where they prepare for actual school) till they’re at least 4.

gianna on

I only like preschool when kids are a little older like 4yrs old, like the year before they start kindergarden. I just don’t like being away from my small kids for a long period of time. Now if you work all day than obviously you need daycare, than I understand. But some moms who stay at home drop off their 2 yr old still in diapers in a daycare for 5-6 hrs, I don’t get it. Kids have the rest of their life to go to school, I like to spend those young years with them. Take them to play groups or play dates to interact with other kids, but I don’t feel the need to put kids in schools at 18 months or 2 yrs old like some women who are home do.

Heather on

I agree, quite a long day. But every parent must make a decision that is in the best interest of the child. Hopefully they made this decision with that in mind, not just for childcare because they cannot keep up with the rigorous daily routine involved with having so many children. I guess the entire blog confuses me…if she felt so strongly about Jewish centered education why didn’t she seek it out in the first place? Are they practicing Jews? I know you don’t have to be to send your child there; however, to say that there is so much love at a Jewish centered preschool kind of suggests that other faiths are lacking in that department, and I take offense to that. I think she just goes with the trend. When Madonna switches over to Buddhism, we’ll see a rise is that as well.

Ruth on

JMO, while I agree that it’s a long school day for a two year old; last summer I worked at a preschool where one of my 16 month olds was there from 7am to 6:30pm because of her parents jobs.

Shi on

Alot of kids that go to daycare or school a bit earlier are more social and less shy in end because they are put into a situation where they have to socialize and learn to share their time and things with others. So not necessarily a bad thing.

semp on

i guess it’s different in the USA from France. Personnally I started school at 2!
in fact here, kids usually start at 3 and only the morning at the beginning and not necesserly all week.
It is called school, the correct translation must be “nursery school” but i’m not sure. the only thing is that your kid has to be potty trained to go otherwise they won’t accept him.

it’s different from daycare… more serious in fact! i was going from 8am/8.30 to 11.30 and then from 1.30pm to 4.30 so that were some big days.

i don’t know which system is the better, but yours seems a little more adapted to a kid rythm.

D on

Get over it ladies. Not everyone can stay at home and watch their two year olds! Some of us have to work for a living. My two year old is in daycare from 8am-5pm and he loves it. Though I miss him, I know he is doing really well in school and actually learning a lot of things.

Would I like to sit at home with him, YES. Am I able to not work, NO. So thus the long day. Stop criticizing others for their parenting choices and focus on your own kids.

Gingi on

Amen D! I say worry about your own kids.

My three kids are all daycare/preschool kids (also at a JCC in our community) and they are thriving, thriving, happy, and well-adjusted. And it’s the RIGHT decision for our family. Cliche as it sounds, it does take a village to raise a child. So WHAT if my village is daycare.

Lily on

I think it’s all up to them to decide and I think they made the right choice for Rain.

I do have to disagree with the person who said that children who go to preschool earlier are less shy or more social. I know heaps of people who haven’t been to preschool at all and who were very social and not shy at all. I also know several who have been to preschool but not very social. I also think that shyness is in the genes (at least they influence how shy we are).

Rain is a pretty name.

brannon on

sanja – my 2 year old attends a preschool – not a daycare. very, very different and educationally based. science, math, language, etc. it’s amazing what he learns in 4 hours a day, so yes – preschools do exist and i am very lucky that my child attends.

Y on

I beg to differ Sanja…My 3 year old daughter is in a Montessori school, and has been since she was 2.5. It is by no means a “daycare”. She has learned so much there..geography,yoga,practical life skills, mathematics etc etc.
She loves her school and would be there all day if she could!

Tee on

I understand that some mothers have to work and are not in a financial position to stay at home with their children. However, I doubt that is the case for Brooke and David. While this is just my opinion and I know that different things work for different people, I really think that children are meant to stay at home with their parents, not be shuffled off to spend most of their day with a caregiver. I honestly don’t understand people that have children and then hand them over to somebody else to raise for a better portion of the day. However, I can’t be clear enough… this is just my opinion and the way that I believe. I know it’s not right for everybody.

Dori on

Why so judgmental Heather? Brooke is not just going w/a trend. She is Jewish as her mother is, and David’s father is Jewish. And to say that there is so much love at a Jewish preschool in no way suggests that schools of other faiths are lacking.

MZ on

Heather, it might have been that she didn’t know one existed near her. In any case as Dori pointed out, the family is Jewish and I think it’s rude to call that a fad.

Sarah K. on

Well said D! I agree 100%.

Also, Tee, I doubt you actually know what the Charvet’s financial situation actually is.

JMO on

Ruth –

My nephews are in the same boat. They go to “school” from 7:15 to 5:30 everyday and they are four. They do learn a curriculum though and have a seperate classroom from the smaller kids but to me it’s just daycare not really preschool….but I guess these days daycares try to incorporate more learning then just playing, eating and napping. I started preschool at 2 myself but I was only there 2 days a week for like 3 hours which is what most kids start off at if they’re not in a typical daycare setting. It seems like Rain is more in a daycare then a preschool but either way it’s Brooke and David’s choice.

Kim on

Tee–your comments make you sound like an arrogant person. Not everybody can stay home with their kids, period. Preschool is not a bad thing for kids. In fact, kids that attend preschool do better in life, studies have shown!

suzanne on

Sanja: My daughter goes to preschool NOT daycare and she started when she was 2 1/2. It’s actually a parent participation co-op school that is awesome! You get to work in your child’s class about once a week and it is completely play based. Believe me, it is not a daycare!! The children learn valuable social skills through play and in my opinion, being able to thrive in a social situation is the most important skill a child can learn. Knowing your ABC’s and numbers doesn’t mean a thing if you lack the social and communication skills needed to be an independent, capable and well-rounded member of society. Believe me, I searched and searched for a pre-school for my son sho was four and was amazed to find so many daycares calling themselves pre-schools. I’m sorry, if you’re child is there until 5 or 6pm it IS daycare. I was so impressed with our school that know my daughter attends school three times a week from 9-11:30 and is thriving! If you are looking for a unique preschool setting and can put in the time, then I suggest enrolling your children in a co-op, it’s the BEST decision we made!

Mrs. R. on

A well run early education program is just that: EDUCATION. Not day care, not replacement for good parenting.

Preschool can start as early as 2, and as late as the year before Kindergarten and be age appropriate and high quality.

To say that a child younger than 4 does not need or warrant teaching in the pre-literacy and pre-logical fundamentals is to deny that children develop at different paces and have different patterns of learning.

Early Childhood Education is imperative in all children whatever setting, although high quality school programs for 2 – 4 year olds are excellent examples. Especially, in my personal view, ones that incorporate religious or otherwise basic core social values.

Please do not reduce a professional, qualified educator to the role of babysitter. They are much more than that, and it’s a disservice and a dishonor to all who work in the profession to treat them otherwise.

Nicole on

My nephew has been in preschool since he was 2. He knew his colors, letters, phone number, and planets (I like to get him riled up about whether Pluto is still a planet because he gets so into it!) before he turned 3. There’s no reason that children cannot be educated before they turn 4. Now his teacher is focusing on teaching the kids Spanish, and I have no doubt that he’ll soon surpass my own meager efforts in that respect! Good for Brooke for not waiting until some arbitrary age to start giving her daughter the education she desires for her.

martyna on

I was an aupair in The netherlands . I was taking care of boy who started doing daycare ( once a week ,entire day) when he was 13 months . He really loved it and there were no problems about leaving him over there , he was taking nap there and enjoying company of other kids .His parents did the same with his older sister when she was his age . I see nothing wrong in this as long as it is ok, both for kids and parents .

Lily on

“My nephew has been in preschool since he was 2. He knew his colors, letters, phone number, and planets (I like to get him riled up about whether Pluto is still a planet because he gets so into it!) before he turned 3. There’s no reason that children cannot be educated before they turn 4”.

– So are you saying that parents can’t educate their children by themselves? Do you think all parents who wait until their kids are 4 to send them to preschool don’t care about their children’s education?

I mean, come on, there are parents who are more educated than people who work at preschools and could easily do that themselves. And even other parents could, I mean it’s just the basics. Preschools are great and the people who work there do a great job, but parents might as well be able to teach their children colors or numbers. Social skills are important but there are playgroups too.

I would send my kid there at the age of three and think that preschools are great. I also understand when parents send their kids earlier, it’s their choice.

But I really don’t think that parents don’t send their kids early don’t care about their education.

Annie on

“I find it ridiculous that people call it preschool for a two year old. It’s daycare at that age.”

I couldn’t disagree more. Every child is different. I started school at 2, could read by 3, and am now a successful attorney. Some programs are “school,” and some kids can handle it, while others can’t. Just because your kids wouldn’t do well in a school environment at age 2 does not mean that there are any hard fast rules about when kids should start school. Mothers on this site frequently like to get on their high horses and judge the choices of celebrity moms. Live and let live.

Sanja on

Wow, a lot of upset over nothing! First of all I’m not from an English speaking country, so I think something got lost in translation here. There have been a lot of comments directed at me so I’ll try to explain some things.

1) Where I live you have a kindergarten till the age of 6 and then you have school till you’re 14 (obligatory). And everything that’s been mentioned (Montessori, etc.) in posts is KINDERGARTEN to me, NOT school (one teacher, you sit in a classroom at your desk, with 25 other kids the same age as you). Here kindergarten is from ages 1-6, with three age groups (1-3, 3-5, 5-6) and they do all those things you mentioned – learn to read, write, numbers, science, paint, sing, foreign languages, etc. But unlike school they do all of it through play and fun and do not get grades or report cards.

That’s ALL I meant with saying that a two year old does not go to school (defined as previously mentioned). I realize I used the wrong word, it should have been ‘kindergarten’ and not ‘daycare’, but there’s no edit option here.

1) Of course children younger than 4 should and are educated, but I don’t think teaching a child colors or numbers is the same as saying that they go to ‘school’. I was watched by my grandmother (both parents worked full time) and she taught me all these thing without a teacher (as do all parents and grandparents that raise their children at home).

Question! From your comments it seems like daycares/nannies don’t teach children these thing in the US?
Here every babysitter or full time baby minder of any kind teaches children things like reading, writing, languages or anything else they can/know and what the parent asks and is paying them for.

Nina on

Personally, I think it’s awesome that Brooke and David feel strongly enough about their faith to place Rain in a Jewish-based preschool. I’d honestly feel the same way regardless of religion mainly because fewer and fewer people seem to find religion a necessary foundation for life. And, too, in Brooke’s defense, I’m fairly certain that most of what she said has been misconstrued. Just because they put their kids in Jewish preschool doesn’t mean they have anything against other religious schools. I mean, they’re Jewish. They put their kids in Jewish school. I don’t see what the problem is. I also see nothing wrong with 2-year-olds being put in preschool or daycare. Brooke may not be broke, but that’s because she WORKS, and with her being a working mom, I think preschool is a wonderful alternative to leaving the kids home with a nanny. Anyway, good job, Brooke and David!

Nan on

I am the teacher in a 2 year old PRE SCHOOL (not daycare) program and my class is two days per week, 2 hours per day. They are @ school for 4 hours a week! We have units and project that teach them broad concepts (ie shapes, colors, etc.) but it’s mainly for socialization. The kids cannot wait to get to school and every child (and parent) is extremely happy and content.

Michelle on

As a preschool teacher, let me just say that there is a huge difference between a preschool program and a “daycare” center. I have a child in a Montessori program and she started in their primary program at 3 years old and believe me, it is not daycare. Many quality programs do start at ages earlier than 4. Daycare centers are focused more on taking care of the basic needs of children, whereas preschool centers, such as the one that she is sending her children to focus on educating children at an early age through a variety of developmental approaches. I say, “Good for them”!

Stephanie on

I also disagree that it’s “daycare” just because they aren’t 4. My son goes to preschool two mornings per week, for 4 hours a day. He LOVES it, and they work on teaching him broad concepts at this age (he just turned 2, he’s in a 1’s class and started when he was 18 months)…like seasons, manners, sharing. They have a structured day (storytime, outside, music class, snack, etc) and he is thriving. Of course I work with him on similar topics at home, but playgroups do not offer the same kind of structure he receives at preschool (and we are in a playgroup, he also loves to play with his friends in an unstructured setting!). Just sayin’, it’s NOT daycare.

brandi on

since when did school become handing your child over? i guess we’re all handed over then – from early education/pre-school to college!

brandi on

and brooke and david are jewish so it’s not a big leap for their children to be in jewish school.

Mrs. R. on

Thank you for attempting to clarify your point and to explain that perhaps there was something lost in translation.

To answer your question: some nannies, some daycares DO teach children, but some do not. Some nannies are not english speaking, so they cannot teach children to read in english. Some daycares focus on care and play, but not on teaching children in a structured (or even a play-based) setting.

The daycare facility near my home has about 15 kids, all ages under 4, and they let the kids play outside for a time, feed them snack, let them play inside for a time, and then put them down for naps. There is not any ‘teaching’ going on as there is no curriculum.

Preschools here in the US can essentially be defined as an environment that is meant for the early education of a child younger than 5 with a defined curriculum. This environment might be a home, where a teacher would have just 3 – 5 children at a time, or a ‘school’ where there might be classes for 10 – 12 children with more than one teacher in each classroom or a parent cooperative where the parents work together to develop the lessons the children will learn and then take turns ‘teaching’ the class.

No preschool would ever make a child sit in a desk and do work for long periods of time (or at least any that I can imagine a parent wanting to send their child to).

In our area of CA, preschools can range from parent run cooperatives to formal montessori programs, from entirely ‘play-based’ unstructured environments to more structured days including music, dance, and bi-lingual classes. There’s a little here for everyone’s tastes, but it is all classified as preschool, not daycare.

robinepowell on

I’m impressed that there’s a Jewish pre-school. Are there Jewish elementary and high schools too?

I live in Canada and I don’t think we have that here. I know there’s Hebrew school but that’s not exactly the same thing, since that’s taught outside of normal school hours.

Jaclyn on

I love the broad generalizations on both sides of the issues. Let’s be real, some preschools are more daycares and some daycares are more preschool and everything in between, some kids love the experience, some don’t, but to each his/her own and sometimes people don’t have choices either way for numerous reasons.

The best part though? Long term studies actually show that as long as a child has an attentive person in their life providing age-appropriate early childhood education (meaning following the child’s pace and recognizing the need to wait to introduce more structure learning and complicated concepts prior to age 7) and creative play whether it be in the home or out there is little to no difference once they reach grade 3 (age 8) in terms of test scores, socialization, etc.

SAR on

That’s a lovely story. Brooke is such a devoted mom. And you never can predict how kids will adjust to preschool; some fit in easily, others have a hard time. But no matter what, it is always difficult for the mother, to see her baby growing up. My sister was a wreck when my nephew started preschool.

Uma on

I agree with Tee in that small kids are fine at home and preschool is really a social/culture thing. Every mom I know–working or not–has said that pre-school is a way to get the kids out of the house, especially for SAHMs who need a break. Some of the pro-preschool comments on here are clearly so “defensive.”

My 3 year old went to preschool for 3 months before I decided it was not worth it. Yes she was learning here and there, yes she was around other kids, and yes it gave me a break–but I wondered what is the point of this? She’ll be in school for 13 years or more…what’s the rush?

D on

Uma, what you fail to see is that some people have to work. So while you have the luxury to be a SAHM, others do not. The reason some of us sound “defensive” as you put it is because we work because we have to not because we are rushing to stick our kids in pre-school or daycare.

Tee, I can’t tell you how judgemental following comment is: “I honestly don’t understand people that have children and then hand them over to somebody else to raise for a better portion of the day.”

Frankly, what works for you may not work for someone else and vice versa. My 2 year old thrives at his pre-school, Creme De La Creme. He is very verbal, knows how to count in three languages, knows his ABC’s, shapes, sings songs, etc. I am pretty happy that he gets such structured learning at school. That way the weekend can be about having fun exploring with Mommy and Daddy.

I am so tired of this SAHM VS Working Mom debate, so sanctimonious! Just because I sent my kid to school doesn’t mean that is wrong as some of the other posters have so kindly pointed out. And because you are able to be a SAHM doesn’t mean you aren’t educating your child any less than pre-schooled children.

In general, I wish that mothers spent as much time focusing parenting their own parenting as opposed to putting down other mother’s choices.

Tee on

Well, let me say again… It’s just my opinion and I can’t stress that enough. Frankly, that’s the reason I don’t comment very often on these situations. It becomes a battle ground for situations that don’t need to be battled over. I’m sorry if my comment came across as arrogant. That was certainly never my intention. However, I stand beside what I said. I don’t understand not keeping your children at home with you IF you’re in a financial position to do so.

Erin on

I’m sure I’m setting myself up to be massively ripped apart for this comment but I do feel the term “have to work” to be used quite frequently when it is not really the case. Yes, some parents may choose to work to maintain a certain quality of life but that is not deemed “having to work”. That is choosing a lifestyle. I like to resevere that phrase for those that work just to put food on the table and take care of essentials. I am sure that is the case with some of the parents commenting and am not assuming that is not the case some of the time. It’s just I know many people who say they HAVE to work, but mostly its just to have their expensive cars and houses. Hey whatever they want is fine with me…I’m not judging them. I’d just prefer they use a different phrase beccause growing up my mom had no choice but to work or we wouldn’t have a place to live so I have a hard time accepting that its the same situation.

robinepowell on

My mother put my brother in preschool a couple of months before his third birthday, simply because I was in pre-Kindergarten and he wanted go too. While I on the other hand didn’t start preschool until 3 1/2 and my mother was at home with us through out our childhood.

If you want to put your child in school early, why not? It won’t be such a shock to their system when they start regular school.

Stella Bella on

“My nephew has been in preschool since he was 2. He knew his colors, letters, phone number, and planets (I like to get him riled up about whether Pluto is still a planet because he gets so into it!) before he turned 3. There’s no reason that children cannot be educated before they turn 4″.

In theory, if both parents are literate, there should be absolutely no problem teaching these things in the home… Not making any judgment on Brooke OR preschool, just reiterating that many parents are capable of imparting knowledge to their offspring.

Stella Bella on

Totally agree with you, Erin, by the way.

SH on

Tee, you weren’t being arrogant. That was your opinion and you have every right to express that. I actually agreed with you and have always felt the same way. My thoughts actually mirror Erin’s post also, the post right after yours, and her comment actually goes right along with yours. I feel some people get on their defensive high horse towards SAH parents and say “well they NEED to work” when it’s just their BMW that they NEED to keep, and they NEED their 5000sqft. house, and they NEED their boats, motorcycles, and the rest of the toys…which is fine, that’s their perogative but don’t say you NEED to work. I chose to stay at home when we started having our kids, now we have 4 kids that are 5 years old and under, and we make a LOT of sacrifices for me to stay home. Brooke Burke has plenty of money for all of us. She doesn’t NEED to work, she WANTS to…which is fine, her choice, and no one elses business but hers.

miri on

robinepowell, are you serious? Unless you live in a tiny town in Canada, you are unbelievably sheltered or blind to the world around you. In every major city there are Jewish preschools, elementary schools, high schools, and yes, after school hebrew schools. You make Canada sound like a backward country by saying we don’t have anything like that. We do, you just never noticed.

Laurel Kornfeld on

Nicole, I don’t know which side of the Pluto debate your nephew supports but there is a strong case for continuing to classify Pluto as a planet. Only four percent of the IAU voted on this, and most are not planetary scientists. Their decision was immediately opposed by hundreds of professional astronomers led by New Horizons Principal Investigator Dr. Alan Stern in a formal petition.

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