Honestly not up until last week, there was not even a single thought to send Abigail to school this early. Because I didn't know what I have here near home. I am living in suburban. If you think I live in Malang City well you are wrong. I live in Turen, a small suburban 40 kilos (45 to 60 minutes car driving) from Malang. I once was thinking to send Abigail to a ballet course or singing course since she loves those activities. But again, the nearest one is more than 40 kilos away. I have to drive her 1 hour then drive back home in another hour which finally I think too bad for her. She will be super exhausted and I don't want that. So those courses need to be post-pone for another year.
We are building a house in the city which estimated will be done next year. So hopefully it is, and yup because of that too I never thought of sending her to school near here anytime soon because again I didn't know if there is any school meets my expectation and my standard.
So, Wednesday last week I had this conversation with my mother-in-law, she asked when will Abbie turns 2 then I said just a couple week ahead then she asked me to send her to school. She explains this conventional school near home which only 5 minutes riding a "becak" or 2 minutes with car. I didn't expect much initially, then I discussed it with hubby. Because both of us didn't like the ELS nowaday. So after the discussion, with nothing to expect the next day I visited the school with Abigail and had the conversation with the teachers.
The school's name is DUNIA ANAK, this school is one of many from the Salvation Army (Bala Keselamatan) Foundation. If you don't know what is Salvation Army,
it is a Christian denomination and international charitable organisation organised in a quasi-military structure. The organisation reports worldwide membership of over 1.5 million, consisting of soldiers, officers and adherents known asSalvationists - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Salvation_ArmyThe base is located in North London, so it's surprised me that we have this near our home. After talking about the school system and curriculum, I asked about numbers of students and teachers in a class. Because few months back I consulted with my lecturer about a good early learning, then my lecturer told me the best one is the one which gives students lesson of self-esteem and let the children develop as much as they could. So what I need is the school which doesn't have too many teacher in a class room who will assist the children all the time and not so many students so the teacher of course can manage the development of each students.
I know I sound so demanding, so complicated, but hey it's for my daughter's best! I had bad experience on school system during my school time back in elementary and junior hs so I don't want my daughter experiences what I had.
So as the result after lots of discussion with my hubby and the pro-cons, yup we finally send Abbie to school the next academic year. So start next month, July 15, 2013 Abigail Audrey is a student of Single Star level in The Salvation Army "Dunia Anak" Play Group.
And again it's surprised me. How it costs and how complicated the preparation is hahaha. I mean about the cost all I know that sending your child to school is super expensive these days. In fact, and Thank God, this school's base is a charitable organisation. So it doesn't expense a lot on the students. I spent less than 1 million rupiah for the entrance fee and the school fee per month is less than 100 thousands rupiah. How great is that! But of course, don't expect much. I mean, don't expect the hi-technology school. The school facility is suburban's standard. What I love about it, it has a super big green field with mountain as the background and rice field. Ahhhh that what I love about suburban. The feeling of peace and joy in beautiful scenery. It is a bonus for me. I know I will never ever send my child to a school which doesn't have green field or open air field, but with picturesque scenery is super bonus.
And about the preparation, yes it is so complicated. I have to take her picture for the school photo pass. This was soooo hard. How I have to make her sit up straight and smile and look at the camera (I failed it)
And the other things that I still need to prepare is her uniform. She will have 4 different uniforms. So she will wear different uniforms each days in a week. In a week she only goes to school 4 days. Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday and yup there are different uniforms. Sigh.... I haven't measured her, and haven't met the tailor but I know it will turn out complicated hahaha. But we'll see.
Huhm... honestly, I don't think I am ready to let her go to school this early hahaha.. I'm never separated with her more than just 30 minutes. You know, these mommy's thought keeps over and over and over my head. How if she sneaks out the classroom and nobody knows, how if she cries all the time (which apparently she loves the school and keeps asking to come back), how if the teachers are not as you expected, and many other how if. But again my hubby soothes me, he said if not know when will be you ready. She is not like going to school overseas, I still can wait for her in the parent's lounge. And this school thingy will not burden her with academical and stuff, it just gives her changes to know world outside the house and to socialize with other toddlers.
So the conclusion is not about going or not going to school, it's about what positive activities can you give to your children. And it's back again to you as parents which school will suit your children's need and which of it will meet your expectation and standard competence. You might suit or love the modern school system or you might like me love the conventional one. Both are fine in its ways and both have their own pro-cons just don't be judgmental, okay!? :)