School And Others

January 19, 2011 at 10:14 pm

It’s the 3rd week of school, so far, everybody is doing fine.

Lucky for me, there is another child, who lives nearby attending the same kindergarten as Zaria, so we have arranged to carpool, taking turns to either send or pick up the children.

And there are 2 other children across the street attending the same primary school as Zara, so again, we arranged to carpool.

I only have to make a trip to the kindergarten daily, and 3 trips a week to the primary school.

I’d also signed Zara up for extra curicular activities in school. Her Saturdays will be full. Starting the day at 8:30am to 4pm, Arts & Craft, Han Yu Pin Yin, Gymrama and Maths one after another. I only insisted she took Han Yu Pin Yin, the rest, it was her choice. And because the fee is cheap, I told her she can just join in, and if any time she found it stressing, she can drop off.

Last Saturday was the first time she went through a jam packed day, and when I asked her if things were ok at the end of the day, she said it was, and all the classes were fun. Which is a good sign. I think the mommy couldn’t take the stress from driving as much as she did. I was going to the school 3 times that day, to bring her to the next class and pay fee for that class etc. TIRED!

Just more than 2 weeks in school, she seems to have improved in Chinese. At least now, I can give her full instructinos in Chinese, and she can ‘translate’ the instruction back to me in English (I made her do it just to gauge her understanding). But she herself admitted she couldn’t do it the other way (translate English instructions to Chinese), not yet anyway.

As for Zaria, she’s doing fine in kindergarten without her jiejie, and she’s rather proud to be in 5 year old class now, holding her big homework pouch to school, and then back home. She’s started having homework, and so far, she only threw tantrum once, preferring to spend time on iPad instead of getting her homework done. One threat that I will send her back to 4yr old class, and she quickly picked up the pen, and did her homework (albeit sobbing).

I’d also started her on Yamaha JMC. She’s enjoying her class very much, she thinks her teacher is better than Zara’s (she follows me to Zara’s class sometimes), and always boasts about it. If you have children attending JMC, you’ll realise the first song they teach the children is the Happy Fingers song, and the children are supposed to stick each of their fingers out, thumb, pointer, middle, index and pinky. Here is what Zaria said about finger number 4 (ring man), “Finger number 4 is so stupid and stubborn, don’t know how to stand up.”

Zaria helping Finger number 4 'stand'

These girls, they keep me busy, they keep me entertained.


January 3, 2011 at 11:27 pm

It’s back to school.. after a month’s off.
Zara to Standard One in a Chinese school and Zaria back to her kindergarten alone.

Her big bag and the books for 1 day (following time table)

Papparazzi parents

RM1 Canteen food

We went to school for orientation last Friday, to pay for her fees, collect her text books (from government) as well as to buy her work books.
The headmaster then had a communication session with the parents, while the kids got familiarised with the teachers.
The school is not too huge in size, there are 320 children in Standard One, out of which 80 are Malays (and our goverment is still in denial, not building enough Chinese schools).
She’s in a class with 38 others.
The amount of books she has is A LOT, so we had to get her a huge trolley bag (those of you with Trunkie, you can consider using that too. :P).
After orientation, I asked her, “So how? Are you ready for Standard 1?”
Zara replied, “I don’t think I’m ready yet.”
I asked her again, “Then how?”
She replied, “Well, I don’t think I can go back to kindergarten, so I’ll just have to handle.”
Big girl in deed.
(And no, her school doesn’t have the horrendous toilet mentioned here, they have squatting toilets which are pretty clean)
She doesn’t know anyone in her class, although some close friends of hers are in other classes (Standard 1 and 2); but this girl is sociable and she makes friends easily. I’m more worried about her Chinese than her ability to mix around.
1st day of school, she’s fine, even started swapping snacks with a friend she just got to know during recess. 🙂

Seing how much there is to Standard 1 (the big bag, the books, the coaching that Daddy is giving Zara on her BM), she said, “I don’t want to go to Standard 1, I want to be four years old forever!” o.O”

Asked if she wanted to go back to school, she said, “Go to school go to school, how many times more do I have to go to school? I like holidays more!” o.O”

But no fuss for her when she went to school, happy to meet her BFFs.

He only realised on the day of the orientation that there is no more English maths nor science, and Zara will be doing both subjects in Chinese.
How is Zara going to know the English terminologies? When all Chinese in China are trying to learn English, here we are sending our kids to learn Chinese.
These are his comments.
Do we have any alternatives? Malay school? Private school? But still these subjects are taught in Malay.
International school? Can we afford it?

Tired and Worried.
I have 1 attending school in morning, and another in the afternoon.
And a lot of people think working from home means you have all the time in the world to do all these chauffering, or homework coaching etc etc. As if.
Anyway, I’m doing some car pooling with neighbours.
I’m not trying to be kiasu, but the pressure is there; and because Chinese is not a language she’s comfortable with, am worried if she’s going to be held back due to the language.

Anyway, we shall see.

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