Wednesday, 2 September 2009


So last Friday was an interesting one for the Mrs and I. Both of us took leave to enjoy a long weekend. She was clearing her leave while her boss was out of town but mainly it was to allow us the time to run a very important errand.

The very important errand was to visit Isaac’s nursery again for I am still not convinced that he is suitable to join them in January next year. For those of you that are new to this blog I touched on this months ago when we were deciding on which nursery to send Isaac to comes January (click here to read). Basically because Isaac is a December baby I feel that he is too young to join nursery when he supposedly turned 3 in January. Then there is also the issue of him going home in a school bus. I cannot imagine my young Isaac at the tender age of 2 having to board the school bus and come home without any known family members with him. Honestly the thought still scares me a little now. I imagine him being helpless and lost as I am typing here.

So a call was made to the school in advance to arrange just in case we miss the bus. After speaking to the person-in-charge I began to see myself as a big time paranoid parent. She actually told me that she has never had such a request from a parent before. To go down and observe how the kids finish their classes and how they will be gathered and led to the school bus. I find that hard to believe honestly. Surely I cannot be the only parent on the entire island that is not comfortable with the idea of having his 2 year old go home in the school bus without a parent around right? When told of this the Mrs naturally had a good laugh.

Upon arriving on Friday we had a little conversation with the person-in-charge again since the classes were still going on. She tried reassuring me that even if Isaac is a December baby, not potty trained and plus the fact that he is not really speaking yet he is still going to be fine in class. In fact a few of the teachers even commented that Isaac seems a little tall for his age. Although this was not the first time I have heard this remark but I still see Isaac as being about the same height as those his age.

Anyway we were told that there will be an orientation come November where the Principal will address all the new parents and we will also get to meet all the teachers. We also learned that one of us is allowed to attend the first 3 days of the class with Isaac. I guess this is to help introduce him to the new environment. Guess it will be a little like the enrichment class that we are attending with Isaac each Sunday. I will touch on that in my next post.

Not long after the kids were all dismissed from class and based on my observation I have to say they are very organized but I couldn’t help but to wonder if any child had gone “missing” before because they are all about the same size and all of them in the same uniform. These kids were led by their teachers from the classrooms holding hands all the way to the area where the parents waited patiently. No child was running around on his / her own. They were all walking along hands in hands. Naturally the Kindergarden kids were a lot noisier for they have a lot to say to their classmates before they next meet on Monday.

For those that were going home by the school buses, they were led to a room where there will be 6 queues for the 6 different buses. The teachers will accompany them there until the number is right and both the bus driver and his assistant are there to collect them. What happen next is there will be a rope with rubber rings in the middle and these kids are to hold onto the rubber rings and led out with the bus driver in front and the assistant at the other end. They will then be led down the stairs to the bus bay at the carpark where they will be helped up the bus. The assistant will make sure that they will put on their seat belts before moving off.

While everything seems to be in order and well organized I have to say the parent in me is still a little worried. I actually have this plan to secretly hide and observe how Isaac will fair being led by complete strangers to the bus on the fourth day of school. I’m sure he will cry his eyes out on the first day he has to go home on his own and I know for a fact I will be there waiting to receive him when the school bus pulls up at my dad’s place.

Having said the above I must admit that when we asked the teachers to point out the nursery 1 babies to us, all of them looked confident and independent. It seems a few of them are only 2 weeks new in the school environment. I guess it will not be as bad as I had imagine but one thing’s for sure and that is January will be more unnerving for me than Isaac I’m sure.


missmoon said...

wow. how time flies. issac is about to attend school already. do you intend to place him half day or full day? ethan is attending CC full day, so he's in N1 since january. i was a little apprehensive, but i decided to be 'hard hearted' and not join him for the first three days, just let him go full steam from day 1. of course, grandparents refused and grandma attended the first day with him. after the first day, he needed no further familiar company!

that's how resilient kids are today. it does a lot of good for them to attend school, early on. there are more pros than cons, if you ask me. they learn the good, along with the bad, but it's all worth it, because at the end of the day, to watch my little on respond, behave, i can say with pride how much he's learnt. heh.

Nicole said...

It really did seems that the kids doesn't need us to stay with them to orientate them for the first few days. While you did go with them, it will seems to get into their head that they will be able to see you for everyday.

HOWEVER, that did not stop most parents, or rather in this case me (or rather the daddy) to go and join and see how it goes. Back then, when claire started on her new school, daddy insisted that I go, even though I seriously don't see the need to. I don't want to give her the false idea that I'll be going with her everyday. And I didn't want to join her for the trial school bus arrangement as well. Daddy insisted that I went too.

I have always know that, going with them will increase their belief and dependance on me, which is really quite alot already. I'll want them to be independant, at least till a certain extent.

But then again, the idea of a 2 year old baby having to attend school, without being able to speak, not potty trained and might not know what's going on, AND having to sit school bus home does sound a little scary...for the parent! In this case, you. Haha..

I know I will also worry when it's cleo's turn(if I want to let her join like what you guys did with issac) at just mere 2 years old, I'll probably join cleo just to make sure she's ok. Cause she's really too young...

The idea is sobering...

bebe said...

hey! my daugther will be attending playschool this coming Dec and will be taking a school bus home too!! ... haha although she is only 2 months younger than Issac, she will be attending playschool and not nursery cos she's a 2008 baby. And every now and then my hubby will also be lamenting how is our baby going to take school bus on her own w/o us!!

So i truely understand how u feel :)

bebe said...

...just to add, actually when she attends playschool this Dec... she will only be 22 mths old ... n my hubby thinks it's really cruel that she has to come home in a school bus ... sob sob ...

Why Not said...

I would be just like you. Or "worse". :-)

Anne said...

In here (Jakarta,Indonesia) a new term start on little Bryan (born 4 December 2007) will turn 2,5 years that time (next term) I also so confuse and worried too..still's better I enter him next july or wait for another year (when he's turn 3,5)

from my consultation with few teachers from kinder expo..most of them said..that mostly boys are bit late in development than girls, most of boy (like bryan)late to start talking, and they's okay to wait for another year to make sure he's ready to go to N1.

so, if you still not sure and worried (just like me) i think better wait another year before issac enter N1 :) and we can be more secure to let them "go" :)

that's just my personal thought :)

Nicole said...

Like what anne said, I think I'll not bring cleo to school at just 2 years old when it's new term next year. Even as she can talk(can even complain), can self feed, I still feel that she's too young to go...I'll probably only send her to school when she's around 2.5 years old or 3 years old...

I have seen parents sending their baby to childcare @ just 18 mois old and they really look so lost and so very confused about the whole environment. And the teachers are literally nannies instead of teachers...

The idea of them so young attending school, and I meant 5 days a week, for few hours and having to sit school bus back by themselves does sounds a little frightening...I tried to visualise cleo going to school after seeing your post...I can't really visualise...other than the fact that she will look so cute in her little uniform and her little schoolbag...haha...

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Cynthia,

Yup time flies indeed. I think this applies especially to parents.

Actually Isaac's nursery has neither full nor half day. It is strictly a 3 hour session per day, one in the morning and another in the late morning till afternoon. Isaac is for the late morning session from 1145 till 1445.

Wow! I do admire your determination in not joining him on his first few days. I'm not sure if I'm up to it really. Let's hope Isaac can adapt fast which is why we are bringing him for his enrichment classes now.

I do see the benefit of having them attend nursery early because they do learn quite a bit more with the exposure. Of course they will also fall ill more but that is another matter altogether.

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Nicole,

I know what you mean but for me it will be hard. I figure I'll be there at least for the 1st day and maybe peeping from the outside for the 2nd day.

Seems like it is true that the dads are the ones who find it harder to let go. I heard someone mention this before but now reading the comments from the few of you it just confirms it.

Hahahaha I'm glad you share my point on Isaac attending and coming home on a school bus.

So what is your intention for Cleo? Will she be joining mid year or nursery 2 or kindergarden only?

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Bebe,

Playschool is for how long? Isaac has never attended any playschool. They provide school bus also? So how is playschool different from nursery?

So your girl is February baby? It is good then for she will not have the same “problem” as Isaac when it is time for her to attend nursery. At least she will be 3 years old not like Isaac who is really 2 only.

Like I mentioned to Nicole above, it really looks like dads are the ones having issues sending their kids to school at such young age.

I believe you, you husband and I share the same feeling now. It is just hard to imagine how they will behave on the school bus. Well since your girl will be doing it before Isaac you make sure you keep me posted ya? Hopefully she’ll have a good experience then perhaps that will help me loosen up.

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Jayne,

Have you not experienced the same with Jamie yet? Or is he lucky enough to have you pick him up from school?

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Anne,

Welcome to my humble blog and thanks for sharing your thoughts.

So Bryan is a few weeks older than Isaac. The system in Indonesia played out well for you because like you mentioned Bryan will be 2.5 years when nursery starts and that to me is much better than 2 years and 1 week old in Isaac’s case.

I’m sure it will be okay to wait another year but he will not be entering N1 any more right? It should be N2 by then.

What really helped me was the hours for Isaac is not attending long hours like a normal school. He will only be there for 3 hours to have fun with his peers as well as learn something new each day. It also helped to go there and witness for myself the confidence that these kids have after having attending the nursery.

In any case we can always withdraw him from the nursery if he is really not suitable so we will proceed with him going to have fun. Actually my main issue is with him coming back in a school bus and not so much the attending of school now.

This can be solved with my dad going to pick him but I really prefer not to trouble him. The Mrs is also contemplating quitting her job next year to help look after the 3 of them so that might help.

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Nicole,

I can see where you are coming from and I feel that being a SAHM helps. You can teach Cleo on your own and watch her grow. For me Isaac is not doing too much in his grandparents place so might as well send him to nursery where he can make some new friends and learn something new each day.

Like my reply to Anne, it really helps that he is only going to be there for 3 hours. The biggest issue I have now is the school bus thingy. I won’t be surprised if his Grandpa decides to go pick him up on a daily basis.

Honestly the only visions I have are of Isaac crying in his classroom and looking completely lost in the school bus. Hahahaha

Aces Family said...

Hi Dylan,

I am a little curios - is there no playgroup near home?

Yes, like the other mommies, i am a bit worried too about Issac being on his own on the school bus.

The 2nd concern is - in case he is unwell 1/2 way thru the lesson, will it be convenient for the grandparents or anyone to go to the Nursary to fetch him? Esp the first 2 weeks is the crucial time for him to settle into the new environment.

It's not easy esp for the 1st child when they start any school, naturally you will feel anxious and worried. When he starts tearing, you will even feel the pain...: P

Hope it will be a smooth transition.


Why Not said...

For the 1/2 year when Jamie went to school, my husband dropped him off and I picked him up everyday. It was a lot of work! But I had the same thoughts as you, too young for school bus. I couldn't bear to.

Little Jae said...

You will be surprise how kids adapt to new environment quickly with peers around. My daughter is few mths older than Issac and she's in full day childcare since 1. I notice that she's discipline in school than at home, so it's never too young to start school.

I think it's a good idea that you accompany Issac on the 1st day, this is the time where you can access the school, the environment, his teachers and class mates and etc etc... Only then, you can be sure ur son is in safe hand.

bebe said...


Ya, the school has playschool for kids from 18mth-36mth. Hmm... i think playschool is more play while nursery will be more academic? (haha..not too useful here huh)

Yah they have school bus service which u gotta pay extra. They only have 1 morning session starting at 8am so we will send her there ourselves in the monrning and she wil take a schoolbus home at 11am. The journey home is quite short actually (less than 10 mins) but it's very inconvenient to go, with lots of walking+take a bus, so we thought charter a schoolbus will be easier. Is Issac's school far from ur parent's place?

Actually we could also wait till she's older lar but i find her getting really restless at home leh... like very bored ... and she really likes to play with older kids, so thought might as well send her in early.

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Astee,

There are of course a couple of nursery near home although we do not know if they are any good. However the Mrs has made up her mind on this nursery that Isaac is attending long ago. He will be there from nursery all the way to kindergarden.

The nursery is near town actually so it is very convenient for me to go get him in case he is feeling unwell.

I already feel the pain whenever I imagine him crying when he has to board the school bus. Then again we are all getting ahead of ourselves for who knows he may not cry at all. As it is he is getting more comfortable with the teachers and friends in his weekly enrichment class.

My fingers, toes and hair are all crossed for a smooth transition. Hahahaha

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Jayne,

Well Jamie is lucky enough to have you two take care of his transportation. You mentioned 1/2 year that he went to school. So does this mean he stopped going already?

I believe most parents feel the same way you and I do about the school bus but there are still kids on those buses. If only I can speak to any of them. Unfortunately none of my readers went through what I am going to go through.

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi there Little Jae’s mummy (name if possible),

I have heard about kids adapting very quickly but Isaac being my first so naturally the Mrs and I have not really experienced it yet. Hopefully he will show us how good he is soon.

Wow! I do admire you for sending Little Jae to full day childcare since she was one. Going through my emotion roller coaster now I can only imagine how hard it must have been hard for you.

I will definitely be there on his first day of school and depending on how well he adapts I hope I do not have to be there with him for the other 2 days. Although I have a strong feeling I may just be hiding somewhere to observe his behaviour in class and on the bus.

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Bebe,

Actually I am under the impression that playschool and nursery are the same thing. Both are about 3 hours and at that young age I doubt they will be very academically driven.

We are currently on the wait list for the morning session because it will be ideal if I can drop him off in school then he only has 1 trip to make on the school bus. Unlike yours, Isaac’s journey will not be 10 mins. Although it is not that far but I think there will be a number of kids getting off between his school and my dad’s place. We have yet to speak to the bus company on this.

Like you we could have waited till Isaac is 3 but officially 4 before sending him to N2 but like I mentioned before he is not doing much at home so might as well let him make some new friends and learn something new along the way.

bebe said...


You better check with the bus operator soon, cos some bus operator only take kids that are at least 2.5 years old. Mine is ok, probably cos we stay very near to the school anyway.

Very curious where u are sending him to. Issit that school that you went to visit before and I asked you here before?? (hehe if u still remember)

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Bebe,

Actually we took it for granted that they will take in all kids from the school. After all they are the official school bus company right? In any case we will contact them soon to verify this.

Yes Isaac is going to the same school that I told you about. Not many readers will notice so shhhh........

Wei Ling said...

Hi Dylan

wow.. i admire you for being able to put Issac on a sch bus. Like you, my gal will also be attending playgroup from Jan next year. The only difference is - she will be 2.5 yrs old by then. The playgroup I am putting her in is not near my mum's place either. So my mum has to take a bus to pick her up everyday. I wanted her to take the sch bus as well. But.. I don't think I can. She's just too young and I worry too much. hahah.. What if she got bullied on the bus, what if she tries to remove the seat belt and stand up and fell? I am too paranoid..

And yes, I guess its better for you to check out the schedule for the sch bus for Issac. The sch I enrolled in only send kids home to certain estates.

But then again, no worries. Boys will be stronger and they adapt to changes faster! :)

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Wei Ling,

Welcome back! Yes I know you are not comfortable sending a 2 year old kid to school on a daily basis from your last posting.

Due the Mrs and I both work we do not have a choice with the school bus situation. The only option is to have my folks travel up and down to pick him up but that is not what I want also.

Like you I do have many what ifs but then seeing how the bus driver and assistant lead and help them onto the school bus sort of put my mind at ease. I am certain Isaac is definitely not the first kid that they have to handle at such a young age. With the number of children at the school they must be really experience by now.

We will be talking to the bus company soon because I am also worried that they may not cover my estate.

Thanks for your reassurance but I think be it boy or girl they have a little growing up to do when the time calls for it.

Wei Ling said...

Hi Dylan

Glad to know you are able to 'let go' and let Issac get on the sch bus. :) I always feel we as parents should relax and not think so much at times, but I am those who can't.. Hope I will do better in this aspect as time goes by..

But then again, its all about getting used to it. Maybe the kids will do better than us!!

Btw, just curious, what time does Issac has his nap cos I read somewhere school only ends late afternoon for him? When I first enrolled my gal in the sch, there were no more vacancies for the morning class and the principal was asking me to put her in the afternoon session instead. But then its her nap time..

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Wei Ling,

You’ll probably be the first to know but it now looks like the school bus option is out the window.

I had a chat with the bus company and although we are not that far away from the school, Isaac will probably be one of the first few to be on the bus and naturally the last few to get off. Due to the route it will most likely take about an hour for him each way.

Furthermore although the classes start at 1145 he will be in school by 1115 because the buses have to be there in advance to receive the kids from the morning sessions.

I will not have Isaac take an hour’s bus ride to and from school. Not at such a young age anyway.

Well based on what is posted here it seems kids are better at adapting then what we give them credit for so my fingers are crossed.

Isaac usually naps from about 9 ish till about 11 ish and then sometimes he will nap again from about 3 ish till about 5 ish. So I imagine he will go for a long nap when he is back from class.

One of the good things about Isaac is he is seldom cranky if he has to miss his nap time. Take Sundays for example when we bring him for enrichment class. It is right in the middle of his nap time from 9.30 to 11.00 but he is never cranky. He may yawn a little towards the end but he will be alright until we reach home where he will take his 3 hour nap.

Nicole said...

Oh, that's really nice to hear! Cause Isaac is really too young and if he did sit in the bus , for an hour everyday, it's not easy. Imagine him crying in the bus all the way, it will still be an hour and I doubt the bus caretaker/companion(or whatever you call it) won't pacify him that long either??

For Claire's case, even though her school starts at 8:30am, she will have to go downstairs and take the bus at 7:50am and when she gets home, it's around 12:30pm. Her class ends at 12pm so not too bad. But an hour for Isaac is really....too unbearable!

bebe said...

oh no. so have you thought of an alternative yet? Think the only solution is to send him to a school nearer your parents' place ... cos i feel even if he's older for nursery or even K1/K2, the 1 hr journey will be too long for him. Unless u move house to closer to the school haha ... then u will probably be the first parents to move nearer to a preschool!

Wei Ling said...

Oh dear.. so what are your plans now? Its always like that - once you finally convinced yourself he will be alrite with the sch bus and then, you realised sch bus is not an option anymore..

Yes, one hour is a bit too long. My colleague's son is also on the sch bus, though he's already 4 yrs old. But due to the long journey, he was always already sleeping on the bus even before he reached home.

Wow Issac is a real good boy! How I wish my gal is a little like him ;p

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Nicole,

I’m sure you share the same sentiment. Going alone on the school bus is one thing but to be there for an hour is a whole different thing altogether. The image of him crying all the way to school for an hour is too much for me to bear.

Half an hour like in Claire’s case I can appreciate as that is fair. I was hoping for it to be about half an hour honestly.

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Bebe,

We are working on the alternative now. Sending him to a nearby school is indeed an option but unfortunately not one that we will consider for now. Hopefully this second session will not be too long before we get to transfer him to the morning session. We are currently on the wait list but not sure how long is the list.

If he can be transferred to the morning session then it will be ideal for I can drop him off each morning and my dad can pick him up when he is done. I have written in to appeal to be moved up the list so fingers crossed on that front.

Moving nearer the school is ideal for it will give Isaac a better chance of getting into the primary school but unfortunately buying a house in that area is definitely beyond out means right now.

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Wei Ling,

We are still looking at our options for now. I agree that life is such that just when you think everything is sorted out something else will just pop up to mess it up a bit. But that is also what makes life interesting.

I was in the same position when I was in primary school. My sis and I were the first to be on the bus each morning and also the last off every afternoon. At least we were in primary school and we have each other as well as 2 other friends to play with so it wasn’t that bad. I really hate to have Isaac experience that alone taking into account the worst case scenario that he is indeed the last one off.

Sleeping on the bus is not entirely safe also.

Isaac is indeed a very good boy on many accounts. He gives us little reasons to complain so far but don’t tell him that.

Trina said...

Hi there, missed your blog for a v long time bcos I was away on maternity followed by extended leave.. (n the bookmark to ur blog was on my office laptop! :p) though still on leave but now clearing emails before returning in oct..

i dont think u're paranoid at all. i'd want to know how the school manages the kids, especially on safety concerns. :)

A Husband's Voice said...

Hi Trina,

Congrats on your newborn and welcome back to my blog!

In case you need to locate my blog again you just have to google A Husband's Voice. Heh Heh

Thanks for sharing the same view. I knew I cannot be the minority here.

Take care and I hope to see you back here again.