7 May 2013, by Tan Yi Lin
This entry will touch on how Coco is doing at playgroup because school is now a big part of this little girl’s daily routine and life.
We’re happy (and utterly relieved) to report that, two months into starting school, Coco now loves attending the half-day programme at childcare.
She cheerfully dons her little ladybug backpack and water bottle, bids everyone “Bye!” (very adult, no longer a cutesy “bye bye”) with flourish, then toddles out of the front door – sometimes even before Dannie is ready to leave.
In the last few weeks of pregnancy, I would accompany Dannie in sending Coco off at school and thereafter, he would drive me to the office. Now that I’m on maternity leave, we continue our morning routine of ferrying Coco to school while my mum watches over Claire at home (who is usually still sound asleep till mid-morning.) It is my little personal time with my elder daughter as we sit side by side – holding hands – and sing songs and chat about the sights en route to school.
These days, it no longer has to be Lao Shi – and only Lao Shi – to receive Coco at the door as the little one toddles in on her own. For a few moments, Coco even cheekily pretends that she doesn’t want to go to school – before she laughs and dashes towards the teacher, and sometimes even tries to sneak into the breakfast area before getting her temperature taken and her hands sanitised. She gamely downs a mouthful of Scotts’ cod liver oil emulsion – even though our instructions to take cold liver oil at home are met with much reluctance.
Lessons for the playgroup students are conducted in accordance with a thematic curriculum. Activities are structured according to a different theme every one or two weeks. Over the past two months, Coco has learnt various concepts under themes such as About Myself (e.g. my body), My Family, Zoo Animals, My Community (e.g. community helpers such as doctors, teachers, firemen) through stories and rhymes, songs and dance, art and craft (e.g. making animal masks using paper plates) and simple things like talking about a scene depicted in a picture. The morning schedule also includes games and physical activities using balls, hula hoops, beanbags – and simply running around outdoors.
Her teacher sends us regular photo updates via email of Coco having fun in school:
It’s all picture perfect.
Literally, just in the pictures. While Coco shows genuine enthusiasm in going to school, there are still minor hiccups to overcome.
For one, her teachers report that she appears tired midway through the morning’s activities. Partly because she’s been ill with the flu (caught it from school!) so she’s less energetic and also drowsy from the meds. Furthermore, she has been waking up at night, wailing uncontrollably from what seem to be nightmares.
Her teacher told us before that Coco’s very independent at school – to the extent of being bossy enough to show the other kids what to do! But just today, we were told that Coco has become needy and clingy and cries when her teachers step away from her, even just for awhile. This morning, I wanted to stay home with Claire and tried to send Coco off at the house gate, but she insisted that I put my shoes on and accompany her on the ride to school.
I guess we’ll monitor the situation and see if things take a turn for the better.
On a brighter note, the playgroup kids will be decorating cupcakes for Mother’s Day this Friday. Guess whose mummy will be baking the cupcakes for them all? 😀 Okay, I confess, my mum will probably end up baking them, not me. Grandma’s also keen to contribute cute decorative items that she’s been wanting to use, such as rainbow sprinkles and miniature animal flags from Daiso. So now’s her chance!
Will share more pictures from Coco’s first ‘baking’ experience soon!