Home-school vs Kindergarten
I’ve been home-schooling Ethan since young until early this year. I planned to home-school him all the way until he goes to Primary 1 next year. That is until his friends in the playground asked him why isn’t he going to school. Ethan then started questioning me about school, about Kindergarten.
We started talking to Ethan about Kindergarten and the possibility of him attending one. The thought of having friends to study (and play) together excites him. He pleaded with us to send him to Kindy.
I was afraid to send him to Kindy. I was afraid we won’t have enough time. When I home-school Ethan, we spent maximum one hour a day studying/writing. The rest of the day are utilized for play, music and anything not directly academic related. We had all the time in the world to do stuffs that we like but now that he is in K2, he spends 4 hours in school.
He comes home with more homework and that will take another 30-60 minutes of his time. Life was not as relaxing as before anymore but I still make it a point to let him go to the playground in the evening for some playtime with friends.
It has been a week now Ethan attends pre-school. Academically he is coping well as when I was home-schooling him, he was already doing Primary 1 and 2 syllabus because he joins my home tuition class for the Std 1 and 2 students. He is happy having new friends and having different teachers for different subjects. Simple things like having a uniform to wear gives him so much pleasure as these are all the little things that he has never experienced before.
But there is one obstacle that he is facing and needs to go through. There is this boy, let’s just name him Boy A who on Ethan’s first day of school took Ethan’s pencils, erasers, colour pencils and even disturbs Ethan when he went to pee. The other day, he took Ethan’s packet milk and drank it! @[email protected] Ethan came home complaining he was ambushed in the toilet while peeing that resulted in him getting soaked in his own urine! I was shocked. Being a former preschool teacher, I’ve already expected something like this to happen when he goes to school but never did I imagine he can get ambushed in the toilet on his first day of school! Ethan’s father then taught him to lock the door whenever he is in the toilet but guess what? That boy will come knocking like mad until Ethan comes out!
Last Friday they were doing coloring before going for their snack break. By the time they returned to class, Ethan noticed that his colour pencils are half missing. He reported to his teacher and the teacher got everyone to help Ethan find his colour pencils. Guess where they found them? Yes, Boy A took them!
If that is not troubling enough, there is another boy, Boy B. Boy B will use his sandals to hit Ethan’s back EVERYDAY! Ethan has warned him to stop doing it but he still kept repeating but this Ethan did not tell me anything about it until last Wednesday when he came home saying, “Mummy, I punched my friend today”. I nearly fainted when I heard that! With eyes wide open I asked him, “WHY?!” He then told me about this boy who has been hitting him in school and even though he told him to stop, that boy did not. So out of frustration, Ethan gave him a punch, ONE punch, last Wednesday but that boy still wouldn’t stop until the teacher reprimanded that boy. I was speechless. Never in my life can I visualize Ethan punching another kid but he did. I did not know what to say. I wanted to scold him but he insisted that it was self-defense.
Darling spoke to the teacher the next day and the teacher admitted that these two boys are notorious in school. The rest of the students are already keeping their distance from these two so when they saw a new boy in school, Ethan is easily their next target.
I really don’t know what to do. From the very first day until today, I let Ethan handle this himself. I want to see how he defends himself as these are the things I am not able to teach him during home-school. These are vital survival skills that he’ll need to learn on his own.
I had a talk with Ethan a couple of days ago. I asked him how was school, if he is enjoying it. With a sparkle in his eyes, he answered me, “It is great! I have lots of friends and they are all very nice to me” but just as quickly the shine in his eyes turned to a hollow stare and he continued, “but I just can’t stand these two boys. I don’t mind if I have to handle only ONE but when I have to guard myself and my belongings from these two, it is just too tiring”.
You tell me, what will YOU do if you are in my position? Changing school is not an option just yet as I do not want to give him the impression that it is okay to run away from our troubles instead of solving them.
I asked Ethan instead, “what do YOU want to do about this?” After giving it a minute to think he answered, “let’s just go to school again on Monday. I’ll tell the teachers if they keep disturbing me. Things can’t be THAT bad”. I heaved a sigh of relieve. I’m so thankful for his positive attitude and his strong determination. I pray tonight that tomorrow will be a better day for him. I promised myself that I’ll stay away and let him ‘grow’ and that I’ll do but I’m telling you, it ain’t easy. It’s always easier to just step in and make a fuss in his school but I’m writing this down as a reminder to myself that I will not interfere unless it really gets out of hand…
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I am a mother to two boys; Ethan and Ayden and a wife to Darling William. I'm a stay at home mum who blogs to break the monotony of life and to avoid feeling jaded. Would love to get to know all the Super Mommies and Daddies and Babies or Singles out there with the hope that we can learn more from each other. Most of all, I am a happy person, and I hope YOU are too.
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