As a young parent in this competitive society, I often wonder how I can better engage my child’s pre-school and teachers to see if they are adequately providing quality early education for my child. Since enrolling our child at My First Skool (MFS), where parental engagement is highly valued and emphasised, we have had many opportunities to work hand-in-hand with the school to ensure that our precious little ones’ well-being are taken care of.
Whether it is field trips, celebrations or special projects, the many interesting activities organised by the different MFS centres allow parents to mingle with teachers, children and other parents. For example, I recently attended an SG50 celebration event organised by MFS Blk 18 Marine Terrace.
Parents and even grandparents were invited to mark the nation’s Golden Jubilee through intergeneration activities, such as playing of traditional games like paper ball, chapteh and five stones, which also helped to build bonds within the families. A novelty for the kids, the games created an avenue for the older generation to share anecdotes from yesteryears with the young ones. Mums, Dads and Grandparents also had a good time watching their young charges perform during the event.
I also had an opportunity once to get a glimpse of my child’s daily school environment and the class in particular when I was invited to do story-telling for my child’s class. For half and hour, I sat with the children, reading from a storybook chosen by the teacher after she helped me build up rapport with the kids through a short introduction. I went home with a better understanding of how my child behaves during lessons and the interactions that goes on among the classmates.
It is very true that a child’s holistic development starts from the pre-school years. Teachers can impart important knowledge and concepts but we must not forget that our children’s first teachers are actually us, their parents. Before they even start nursery or kindergarten, we are the ones who discipline our kids and teach them what is right or wrong. And teachers may come and go, but parents will have to see our kids through all their growing years.
That is why we need to share the responsibility with the school to help our child achieve the desired outcomes upon graduation from kindergarten. After all, concepts taught in school need to be reinforced at home too.
MFS maintains a good line of communication between parent and school to ensure that parents are well informed about their child’s development and progress, or so that they can better address any points of concern when interacting with the kid during after-school hours.
I can check on my child’s progress regularly whenever I meet the teacher during pick-up time. We are all given a parents’ communication booklet, in which the teacher will provide updates on the interesting activities done daily or highlight any issues that we should take note of. We also find out about important announcements by the school through this booklet.
Moreover, parents-teachers conferences are conducted every six months, where teachers will share the portfolio of the children with parents to enable us to gain better understanding of what the children learnt in school. Some MFS principals and teachers also go the extra mile to hold ad-hoc discussions to address individual parents’ concerns or to share parenting tips.
Through these efforts, we are assured that MFS really puts quality parental engagement into action.
Find out more about My First Skool and how parents can get involved in your child’s pre-school education at www.myfirstskool.com or call 6509 7887 for more information.