Whether or not you keep your twins together in school is a huge debate among parents of twins and multiples.
And deciding whether you’re keeping twins together in preschool is one of the first major decisions you have to make regarding their education.
I’ll admit that I don’t like the thought of my identical twin girls being separated. They’re so stinking cute and it warms my heart to see them running around together. As we prepared for our girls to enter preschool, I had one question: should twins be in the same class?
Truthfully, there are pros and cons to each side and there really is no right or wrong answer. Keeping twins together in school could work beautifully for one family and cause lots of distress for a different family.
There is a right answer for each family. Even if your school has a policy about separating twins, there are laws in place that give the parent or legal guardian the right to make the final decision.
As the parent, you have the right to make the decision that best benefits your twins.
Below, I’ll outline the benefits of keeping your twins together in school (both preschool and elementary school!)
Looking for the pros and cons of separating twins in school? Don’t worry, I’ve got a post on that right here!
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Reasons to Keep Twins Together in Preschool
We are treating preschool differently than elementary school and so for the sake of this post, I’ll divide it into two sections: preschool and primary school.
Their Own Comfort
Preschool can be really scary, especially for children who have never been to daycare! Many children struggle with separation anxiety from their parents when they first start preschool.
Twins can have separation anxiety from both their parents AND their twin. The twin bond is so strong. Many twins (mine included) have literally never been apart for more than a few hours, even when they sleep!
While they do need to learn to function without each other at some point, it isn’t imperative that it happen at the ripe old age of 3.
For some twins, having their sibling in the same classroom can provide a sense of comfort and make the transition to preschool easier.
Preschool isn’t as scary if you have your best friend with you from day one!
By the time they reach Kindergarten, they will be used to being apart from their parents and are ready to handle a school day without their wombmate.
Learning Social Skills Together
Preschool is all about learning social skills and how to properly act in a classroom. Sure, some people think it’s about academics, but truly… academics don’t need to be taught in preschool.
Children absorb things naturally through play… (but I have an entire post dedicated to the importance of play-based preschool, so I digress…)
My twins fight frequently (read: all the freaking time) at home. I’m sure most twins do. I step in when I need to and do my best to give them the skills to sort out their own problems and treat each other with kindness.
Not gonna lie. It sounds awesome to have someone step in and teach those skills along with me!!! Right?!?
Obviously, the hope is that these skills are being learned in every preschool classroom. But at this age, children learn best through doing. Being told “You have to share!” means nothing to a 3-year old.
So what does work? Someone stepping in and solving the problem with them.
Example: “It looks like you’re upset and you both want Thomas the Train. Let’s figure out a way to work things out. Josie, why don’t you play with the smaller Thomas, and after
Putting these skills into practice together at preschool will help them work things out on their own at home.
I want my girls to practice these skills at school. To have someone other than their parents step in and say things such as “you can BOTH love the color green. Two people can love the same color!” (Yes, this is an actual thing they fight about)
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Preschool is a Trial Run
There are many benefits of twins being in separate classes.
However, some twins thrive being together in class together.
Keeping twins together in preschool is a fantastic trial run to see how they do together.
Not only will you get to see how they handle being together, but you can get valuable feedback from their teachers on their strengths and weaknesses, and how they think you should proceed in the classroom.
We, of course, will make the decision we think is best and not rely solely on the teacher’s advice, but will be nice to have some extra feedback and input!
Reasons to Keep Twins Together in Elementary School
Sure, life isn’t consistent. But it sure is nice when you have two children of the exact same age to have a consistent education.
There may be different books that are read or more of a focus on different areas.
I know that the entire grade will follow the same curriculum, but it’s inevitable that classes will go at different paces depending on the strengths of the students.
Not only a consistent education, but consistent rules! Imagine how sad it would be if one twin is allowed to bring in cupcakes for their Birthday, but the other one isn’t?
I mean, that wouldn’t happen in our district because we aren’t allowed to send in food, but still. It would be sad.
Teachers have varying tolerances of strictness for rules. Having a consistent set of rules for both twins will make things easier for them at home.
Convenience for the Rest of the Family
Let’s be real… as parents, sometimes we have to value the convenience for the entire family over one or two children. And having twins in the same class is definitely more convenient for the parents.
It could free up space to focus on other things. In a season of being overwhelmed, having twins in the same class could lighten your mental load enough to make you a more present parent.
Think about it: only one homework assignment to keep track of. Tests and quizzes are all on the same day. Field trips are at the same location. Class holiday parties are on the same day. Only having to visit one classroom for open house.
Honestly, when I was telling this to my husband, he was about ready to change his mind! Luckily we still have a few years before we have to make the decision, and lots can change by then.
They Have the Same Learning Styles
Identical and non-identical twins alike often have similar learning styles. If they attend a small school with only a few options for teachers, they may benefit from being in the same class with the same teacher.
If your twins are both
Separation anxiety in twins can still happen in twins older than the preschool age. It is really up to you, as a parent, to determine if it will be better or worse to separate your twins for this reason.
While they do need to learn to function as their own person, the separation can be more traumatic for some twins.
If you end up keeping your twins in the same class, perhaps consider enrolling them in different
How We Are Handling Preschool
As of now, our plan is for our girls to attend the same class in preschool and then decide based on how they do and input from the teachers what to do in Kindergarten. But, we are learning towards separating them once they get to Kindergarten.
Our girls will be starting preschool this fall and we came to a decision a few ways.
The first factor was that… well, the preschool we want them to go to only has one preschool class. Haha! Soo that was an easy decision!
But in all reality, we could have found another preschool if it was important to us that they were separated. However, since they have always stayed home with me, preschool in itself will be a huge transition.
I strongly feel that it will be traumatic for them to be apart. They will be in preschool for two years, and by the time they get to Kindergarten will be well established with the classroom setting and being apart from mommy all day long.
At that time, we will most likely put them into different classrooms. I feel pretty strongly that separating twins in Kindergarten or first grade will be the right choice for our family.
Regardless of what decision you make, the most important thing is to treat your twins as individuals while still nurturing their twin bond.
Even though my twins, Josie and Margo frequently match (out of convenience for me!!), I always let them choose their own shoes and hair bows.
And guess what? They take great delight in having their favorite colors. The things that make them unique.
Josie adores cats and Margo loves flamingos. Recently, when they needed new pajamas, I bought Margo flamingo pajamas and Josie cat pajamas. They were both thrilled to have their ‘own’ set of pajamas.
They also still love matching, especially when I match along with them! It is one way that I can really nurture their twin bond as well as their individuality.