Schooling at 19 months young
My dad told me that I started attending school when I was two’ish. My husband said he started schooling at the age of five. We sent Sonia to school when she was 19-month-old. And will be sending Arnold to school when he turns 2. So why are we sending our kids to school so early?
For so many reasons!
- Acquire social and good communication skills – Children are able to express and articulate their thoughts, and be a good listener. Their communication skills are largely developed across their first few years, so we need to engage them in plenty of games and activities to hone their speech and language skills. Of course, they can do these at home, but being around older children in school will speed up their language acquisition. Besides, I also want them to have confidence speaking to people other than their family. And most importantly, socialise with kids their age.
- Work well in teams – This affects our children’s future opportunities for leadership roles. It is vital that we guide them on how to interact with others appropriately, as well as how to manage and understand their emotions. Sonia was the only child at home (before Arnold came along). She got all the attention and never needed to share anything. We couldn’t help but wonder what would she be like in a decade or two if she has problem working with people. Again, a school will set an environment for her to pick up such skills.
- Lots of space and a conducive and stimulating environment – We didn’t want our children to cramp at home with five hundred toys within their reach, mindlessly moving from one toy to the other without learning anything out of them. Plus, they get so distracted too easily. The right kind of setting and vibe is needed to encourage learning. I like it that Sonia’s school has a room for science, a room for music, a room for physical activities and an outdoor play area. It is easy to concentrate and get into the whole learning wagon.
- Positive peer pressure – Peer pressure can be a good thing. Sonia is a very fussy eater. She picks her food and refuses to try new things. Having a balance healthy meal is almost impossible, but thankfully she likes drinking milk and doesn’t mind taking supplements. Ever since she started schooling and mixing with her peers, she’s more open to trying new food and now takes a variety of food and fruits (though, still not as much as I would like her to, but good improvement). Just yesterday, she had rice with vegetable soup, boiled carrot, steamed cod fish, pork, fried egg and vegetables on her plate. And YES! She finished every bit of it!
I’m not saying that schooling is a quick fix to all our problems, but in our case, it is a better option and we are happy with our decision. Of course, raising the kids is still our job, not the teachers’. I take the kids out almost every single day because I believe they learn something more outside than just staying in the house. Even taking them out for grocery shopping can be educational. And every weekends are FAMILY TIME!
Here are some pictures of Sonia at school taken by her teachers –>>
She enjoys school a lot. She enjoys staying at home too. And she enjoys going out MOST! She will share with me what she had done in school and her adventures with her friends. Similarly, she will tell her teachers what she did at home with mummy and daddy, and the many interesting encounters she had over the weekends. Communication is the key. We try our best to nurture our children, give them space to grow, and equip them with the right skills for their future.
If you are school hunting now, I will strongly recommend Learning Vision @ Changi Business Park. It worked for us!
Here are some things we look at:
Before enrolling Sonia to Learning Vision, we went to at least ten other schools for viewing. The first thing we look at is not how grand the school is or how impressive their curriculum are. We look at the expressions on the children’s face. If they aren’t happy, we will strike the school off my list. Raising a happy child is our first priority. Learning should be fun, right?
Next, the school environment. Besides having a conducive setting, it has to be bright, clean and comfortable. The kids will be sitting and rolling about most of the time, so cleanliness is on top of the list. I’m impressed with how they kept the compound nice and clean. Even the toilets smells good!
When all of the above has reached its mark, we then talk about the school curriculum. It has to be decent, not overrated. Because we all know what a toddler is capable of doing. It has to be realistic and fun. Most importantly, NO HOMEWORK! Learning Vision fitted the bill.
It also helps that Sonia has a group of AWESOME TEACHERS! This year, Teacher Fasha is heading her class and she has been lovely. Sonia adores her a lot! She has an extraordinary level of patience, enthusiasm, creativity, and, above all, a love of early childhood education. She understands the needs of both the child and their parents. As the link between home and school, communicating effectively with parents is crucial and very important to me. She keeps me updated on Sonia’s progress, her eating habits in school, and more. Along the way, we build trust.
There are also Teacher Sze Ying, Teacher Gwen, and Gao Lao Shi whom Sonia adores and endearingly calls “my teacher, my teacher”. These teachers are able to control a classroom while always keeping things educational and fun. Managing a classroom full of young children can be very challenging. Hats off to these teachers!
We hope our experience with school hunting is of some help to you!