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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Kindergarten

Pagi tadi isi feedback form untuk sekolah Adam and just realized tak pernah lagi cerita pasal sekolah Adam kat sini. Initially I thought of sending Adam when he was 3 to expose him more sebab Adam ni duduk rumah dengan bibik aje seharian. Not so much nak suruh dia pandai baca buku ke apa tapi to improve his social skills and speech. At home, hubby and I speak English to him tapi bibik cakap Indon. So, Adam ni lambat sikit la bercakap and ramai la yang point out on this. Though I knew the reason was because he did not have that much of practice tapi sekali sekala ada la jugak datang risau tu kan. Especially bila tengok budak lain yang not even 2 dah boleh buat long sentences.





So pencarian ni actually started towards end of 2010. Masa tu pun dah berminat with Real Kids as they accept 3 years old tapi, was not ready to let Adam naik van balik sekolah. Cakap pun tak boleh lagi cause he was 2y3m in Jan takkan nak bagi balik sekolah naik van. So postpone setahun. Towards end of last year, start cari sekali lagi and this time lagi serious la. I went to a few kindies and these are how I made my decision:
  • Distance - it has to be close by as I don't want my son to spend his early years on the road. Though Real Kids ni kat section lain, tapi it's not too far for me or hubby to drop him off on our way to work. Plus point is dia ada outsource hantar/amik anak sekolah dengan school bus/van operators and rumah kitorang termasuk dalam area of service.
  • Safety - As sekolah ni ada it's own compound and gated, I am quite ok la. Sebab ada some kindergarten yang dekat shoplots. Kalau yang dekat terrace house tu at least dia ada safety ladder in case of fire from atas kan. Kat Real Kids ni, pagi-pagi pun semua pagar akan dikunci. Kalau anak datang lambat, kena tekan bell for the staff to open the gate. Mula-mula tu of course la risau specially part naik van and that was the very reason Adam postpone setahun kan. Tapi bila dah tengok sendiri how it works, kurang la sikit risau tu. At Real Kids, after the final bell rings, all the students will gather dekat assembly area. Masa ni all gates are still locked. Parents will go to the gate and mention their kid's name to the teacher, and the teacher akan amik the kids sorang-sorang and pass to parents. Sangat puas hati part ni. For those yang naik bus/van, they will gather in one corner. Bila van tu sampai, a teacher/staff akan make sure all these kids queue up and naik van sorang-sorang. Van driver tu pun turun and  make sure semua budak naik van and dia tutup pintu van. Bila sampai rumah, bibik dah tunggu depan gate and make sure Adam turun.
  • Facilities/Compund - As mentioned kat atas, Real Kids ni ada its own compound. So, senang la budak-budak nak berlari ke apa kan. Those yang kat terrace house pun ok still ada area budak2 nak lari-lari kan. I still wonder tadika yang kat shoplot tu macam mana budak2 buat physical activities? Dalam kelas je ke eh? Anyway, sekolah Adam ni macam mini school. Ada it's own music room, computer room, library, playground and its own swimming pool! Kecik je swimming pool tu and of course it is gated and no way budak akan dapat panjat masuk. Ni sangat plus point sebab banyak kindies yang offer swimming lesson tapi they have to ferry your kids to the nearest swimming pool. Cukupla naik van balik sekolah. X nak banyak sangat risk on the road. 
  • English Medium - Most of the kindies in the area offers this. Tapi bila tanya the teachers, some confess cakap most of the time diorang kena cakap Malay sebab ramai budak tak faham. And some of them, especially tadika kecik-kecik, I was not really happy with the teacher's English. Tak naklah kita kat rumah cakap elok-elok nanti pergi sekolah jadi "I is" kan ;p
  • Program - I would say most kindergartens ada their own program and semua nampak ada kelebihan masing-masing. Yang ni memang tak nampak sangat advantage Real Kids. Cuma suka bila tengok diorang ada bagi time table macam kita kat sekolah dulu. About 20 minutes for each subject. So takdela ikut suka hati mood cikgu rasa nak ajar apa hari tu kan :) On reading and bacaan, I don't have much comment or complain. Sebab memang bukan intention nak suruh focus academic sangat pun.
  • Agama- Most of the kindie dekat Shah Alam memang focus on Agama. What I want is balance. Real Kids ni takdela macam sekolah lain siap anak pandai semayang dhuha and what not tapi ada la jugak basic alif ba ta. Tak pernah test Adam on this tapi adala lagu Alif Ba Ta yang dia nyanyi and pahamla concept pray and nak pray macam mana. I was informed diorang ada program khas Agama after school with additional fee of course tapi additional setengah jam sehari so kena arrange transport sendiri. Talked to one of the parents yang hantar anak for that program and she said banyak la doa apa semua dia boleh baca. Better than nothing lah kan.
  • Trips/Concert/Sports Day - One advantage franchise macam Real Kids ni, they have the numbers to organize such events. Yelah kalau tadika setakat 10 students macam mana nak buat concert kut? Masa kita kecik kecik dulu event macam ni la yang sangat kita look forward pun kan. This year sempena Olympic special sikit diorang combine semua Real Kids in Klang Valle and organize a big Sports Day in Kelana Jaya siap Tun Siti Hasmah officiate the event. Tahun-tahun lain kecil kecilan jela kut tapi Real Kids Shah Alam itself ada banyak kelas dah so memang cukup sangatlah nak bagi event nampak meriah kan. Field trips Adam pernah pergi Petrosains and Kidzania (masa Holiday Camp). Concert hari tu Cikgu dia cakap will be held sometime in September. Can't wait!
  • Quality of Teachers - Yang ni susah sikit nak gauge. Tapi masa tengah survey tu, adala tanya siapa cikgu-cikgu dia. Permanent ke tukar-tukar ke macam mana kan. Sebab ada satu sekolah tu, macam best cikgu dia tapi dia macam dah nak deliver dah so mesti kena tukar cikgu tengah-tengah. Kalau budak besar lain kan, ni kecik-kecik lagi kesian kalau tukar-tukar cikgu kan.
  • Fees - Ni of course point paling penting. Surprisingly, the fees does not vary much from one kindie to another. Initial payment masa registration you can expect between RM800-1.2k. Monthly fees, Real Kids RM280, another corner lot school is RM230. Tapi bila compare rasa worth it lah RM50 difference tu. Another Islamic Montessori sampai RM400++ sebulan tapi yang tu tak check in detail kenapa mahal sangat. Maybe dia siapkan lunch kut. 
So, all in all I am quite happy with Adam's progress so far. Social skills makin better, speech Alhamdulillah much better sekarang. Dah boleh bercerita macam-macamla. Adam pun happy with his school banyak kawan and teacher semua dari support staff sampai principal semua pun baik-baik. His Malay pun dah improve sangat banyak walau masih ada Indon dia ;p Bila jumpa orang yang cakap Melayu, dia akan cakap Melayu jugak maknanya he is adapting well with whatever situation he's in. So, if you are looking for a kindie, make sure you know what you want cause you will be happy only when you get what you want :) (sape tah tulis quote lebih kurang macam tu dalam fb tadi)

p/s: nak letak gambar tapi xleh la pulak kat ofis ni