Choosing a School

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My niece in Hong Kong is almost two so her parents are looking for a preschool for her. Since I am a teacher, they turned to me asking me about the EYFS (The Early Years Foundation Stage) – a set of Welfare Requirements and a set of Learning and Development Requirements in the UK- and about Montessori schools.

For such a young child, I tend to believe that developing potentials is more important than acquiring knowledge per se. In other words I think it is better to prepare the mind for learning through different methods and techniques. That’s why I’d favor the Montessori method.

Since my brother and his wife are expatriates I gather my niece will mix with more different children at the International Montessori school rather than at a school with a UK-based curriculum. It is probably preferable as in the long run they will end up going back to France, not England.

What’s more my maternal grandmother, who was quite modern for her times, sent my mother and her siblings to a Montessori school. They have lovely memories of their years there and did well academically later. I also find they are well-balanced people who have managed to keep a sound equilibrium between personal development and academic demand with their own children.

What do you expect from a school? How did you choose for your own children?

For a broader approach of this issue, you might find the following useful: Questions to Ask When Choosing a School for Your Children, a post by Mom in Israel.

A Few Thoughts About Commenting

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– Most people comment on new posts not old ones. Thus, because of the upcoming Koren siddur, my post on the subject is read several times a day but never commented. The same is true of my post about the movie Waltz with Bashir which has been read regularly for the last few weeks but never commented upon since July.

– Do you get many spams? I hardly get any and therefore it is rather easy to add comments on this blog provided you don’t include more than two or three links – the default setting I have chosen. However I sometimes wonder about a few people’s blogs where it is harder to comment than it was to go through the Berlin Wall before 1989. Admittedly Blogger has made the letters you are meant to enter easier to copy; you no longer feel like you are writing a coded message for an undercover spy yet some of these codes are still pretty (too) long.

– In addition, one of the Blogger options for commenting is not Mac-friendly and makes it impossible for me to comment. It is the feature where a small window pops up after the comment and asks you to copy some letters before you can publish your comment, not the most usual one with a bigger window on the left. I have sent a few mails to the bloggers concerned and apologize if I have forgotten to answer some of you who have commented on one of my posts and have the feeling I never visited them back. I did but couldn’t add my two cents.