Monday, September 12, 2011

Playschool search

Once again, I am hunting for a playschool. Initially, we thought we would send Muffin back to the same child care that the twins went to. But apparently, they are bursting at the rafters with kids so they can't take in anymore, even if it is only 10kg and under a metre tall, in the shape of Muffin. So, there has been a search for one.

My conditions stay the same although after the twins, I am better able to articulate it.
1. No worksheets.
2. Open airy classrooms.
3. Good teachers that love the kids.
4. Clean.

Packrat's conditions are that
1. There should be open areas for Muffin to play.
2. It should preferably be in an old rambling house.
3. There should be tricycles or other play vehicles.

I have narrowed it down to two schools. The others were dismissed rapidly for various reasons.
One had great open airy rooms in a rambling house but I couldn't get my head round the fact that 18 month olds were sitting round a table doing worksheets. On top of that, they didn't let parents sit in with the kids as a transition period. I was supposed to chuck Muffin into the deep end on the first day.

Another had no outdoor play area and while it boasted a very nice pool, I found out the pool was freezing cold. On top of that, the kids were crying a lot and the fees were exorbitant.

So the two that I am looking at.

School A.

What is good about School A.
1. Cheaper than School B.
2. Has a very articulate principal who managed to get Muffin to stop crying and play peekaboo with her.
3. Has a very organised and structured curriculum.
4. While structured, does not believe in worksheets.
5. Clean and bright.
6. Has a playground and trykes that can be ridden.
7. Conscientious about health checks.
8. Small class size for the toddler bunch.

What is not so good about School A.
1. Slightly further away than School B.
2. Is in an office building.
3. School has no classrooms but is partitioned.

School B.

What is good about School B.
1. In an old rambling house. Actually, 2 rambling houses.
2. Has a great playground.
3. Has a trampoline that all 3 kids loved and were fearless on!

4. Is nearby.
5. No airconditioning.
6. A mixture of kids from all over the world. We saw some Caucasian and Eurasian kids. We like that because it exposes the child to other races and possibly other festive and cultural celebrations.

What is not so good about School B.
1. Unclear curriculum.
2. Dark and grimy.
3. Cluttered.
4. Ventilation is bad and it is stuffy inside.
5. Does not seem as vigilant with health checks.
6. It is more expensive and I think I am paying the premium for the trampoline and the nice playgrounds.
7. Muffin will be stuck into a big class where he will be one of the youngest.

So I am torn. I am inclined to pick A because it is cheaper and I don't think the quality will differ as much as the fees would. But that being said, Muffin was much more at home in School B than A. In fact, I had to haul him, kicking and screaming out of the school. So, do I go with my instincts or my son's?

I read through my blog posts from the first month the twins were in school and I can't believe I will have to go through all the tears, germs and guilt all over again!

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