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Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Too Young for Kindy?

What is the best age to send a child for nursery, playschool or kindergarden? I suppose it depends on each child and their stages of development. However I am totally against sending them too young when they are not ready for it.

While I was shopping for kindergardens recently, I saw this 3 year old little boy who looked so traumatised and lost. He was running around looking totally lost and confused and bawling away. He ran to a table and tried to grab his little bag, then he ran to look for the door but couldn't find it and the person in charge simply said "See you cry some more, now you can't get out."

He looked totally pitiful. It was his first day apparently. I wonder where are his parents. I wonder why they have sent him to kindergarden at such a young age. My boy who is 3 is constantly having separation anxieties from me even when we are in the house and I am out of sight. What more when they are left in a strange environment without beloved mummy or daddy. I wonder, I wonder, I wonder and I feel really sorry for the little boy.


  1. It's depend how's the parent think. To me, age 5 is the best, they are more indepedent at this age too.

    Have you finished shopping for school for your girl?:)

  2. Age 4 - 5 will be ideal for me to sent them to school. But it also very much depends on the individual kids and the parents. At JS school's baby class, I saw a girl almost my WH's age, she seems so happy to go school everyday

    Do you plan to sent your girl this year?

  3. Sometimes parents think they are doing the "right" thing of sending their kids to school early. They may be "wrong" instead...

    Anyway, taking the other extreme, people of yesteryears still manage to survive and earn a living despite not having a formal education. Does it mean that if the child is 2 years behind and only entering formal education at 5 years old will result in the child losing out and therefore, die of hunger or being a loser in life???

    At the end of the day, the parents should realise that they are the ones who are being kiasu...if they really think about their actions.

  4. jesslyn,
    Almost done shopping and will probably start in April. :)

    I think it depends on each child too but I'm still for the idea of sending them later when they are more ready and making starting school a positive experience for them.

    I find that while shopping for kindys I can still put my foot down and go for what I want but I have limited choices for schools and feel pushed towards being kiasu. There seems to be no good balance. Its either the very extreme lepak culture or the other extreme of "do as you are told" culture. I have a lot of negative feedback that those from chinese schools lack creativity because of the teaching method but at least at Chinese schools I feel I am assured of a certain standard of education.

    BTW, I forgot to give you my old link about kindergardens which you will find useful when you are shopping or you can go and write your own blog post. Thats the beauty of blogging. Hehe. Here is the url: Kindergarden 101

  5. Hi MG, I have also seen 3-yr-olds in my kid's Sunday school class who are totally independent and fine without their parents in sight. But you are right. Ultimately, we should be guided by our childrens' needs.

    I sent my elder child to nursery when she was 3yrs 6mths old, and it was torture every morning. We did that then cos' we were both working and we thought that by letting her be among children her own age, it would stimulate her and make the mornings more fun than staying all alone at home with my MIL (who was living with me then).

    Anyway, after 2 weeks and having endured enough stress caused by her separation anxiety, we pulled her out of the nursery and tried again 6 months later, in a different nursery, hoping that the new environment will not trigger that initial anxiety associated with the old place.

    It seemed to work. She was happy to go every morning and everybody was happy.

    My younger child just started attending this Jan though she would only be 4 in July but she has no problem whatsoever, esp since her jie jie is in the same kindy. In fact, the class teacher adores her so much, probably due to her chubbiness, that she gets a big hug every morning, and the babe seems to enjoy that. Hehe..

    So I think those parents who want to send their kids at such a tender age should not be so hard and fast about it. If the kids show resistant, hold it off for another few months and try again.

  6. A&A started at 4 yro & they were raring to go to kindy.

  7. I'm also being pushed by hubs and SIl to let Ivan enter kindy/childcare... he's only 32mths old... 2 1/2 years. Also in a dilemma of whether it's too early or is he losing out coz mommy is holding out letting him join friends his age who are school goers... so sien, but I hate to think that I should let him go due to peer pressure. Maybe if we let them go for a few times and try it out, they'll help us decide if they like it there or not...

    What do you think?

  8. jomel,
    Thanks for the feedback and sharing your personal experience. I'm sure everyone loves fei mui. Hehe.

    a&a's mom,
    My 3 year old is constantly saying "I want to go school too." but when he gets there he says "I want to go home." Lol!

    Ah... we parents always worry don't we. We worry that when they are at home they are not getting enough stimulation. (I worry about that all the time. I worry that its my fault my kid is shy and not sociable because she only has chance to interact with me.) However, I think that sending her at age 5 and 6 should be enough to pick up on social skills hopefully and I'm worrying too much.) I think its a good idea to let Ivan try it out and see his reaction.


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