Monday, January 30, 2012

first day of school, 4th Jan 2012

Back-dated post. I know it's kind of out of topic when everyone is blogging about CNY now :-), but gotto blog it soonest before my memory fails me :-).

After school orientation on 31st Dec 2011, 4th Jan 2012 was officially the first day of school for HQ. The school allows parents of Primary 1 students to be in the school area for the first 2 days. I took leave for both days and was prepared to spend 6-7 hours in the school each day.

I planned to brief HQ on the first day on timing for different activities, managing and spending his money, where to wait for the Van Aunty, etc. I will supervise on the second day to see how he flares.

Pointers for HQ:
1. Eat breakfast as early as possible once reached Popo's house
2. Take bath at 11.30 am and change to school uniform
3. Eat lunch at 11.45 am
4. Be ready to wait for Van Aunty to come at 12.00 noon.
5. Once reached school, put bag at assembly area and go to toilet. Must get back to the assembly area by 12.45 pm.
6. Break starts at 3.00 pm. Must get back to class before 3.25 pm. During the 25 minutes, he is to eat his packed food, buy anything else to eat if still hungry, and go to toilet.
7. School ends at 6.30 pm. Wait for Van Aunty at bus lane no. 1.

Ready for school :-). He was very excited sitting in the transporter's Avanza as it has 3 rows of seats... haha. I planned to meet him in school, but I only managed to find a parking space after making 3 rounds at the nearby shoplots. When I reached his school, I had missed the van. Luckily the kids were seated at the assembly area according to classes and I spotted HQ easily.

With still 30 minutes to 12.45 pm, I thought of exploring the school canteen with him while it's still not full with students. With his RM 2 pocket money, he bought a Solivite and 3 pieces of fried nuggets. So he spent all his pocket money before school even started! He ate one piece of nugget and added the other 2 into the tupperware where his char siu bun was packed in. I was very surprised on the things that are sold in the canteen; will share more on this in a different post.

School starts
Once the kids got in their classes, HQ started talking amiably with Jason and the kids sitting behind him. I think he enjoyed talking to his new friends very much and told me to wait for him in the canteen at 3.00pm o.O". I just hope he will not be too talkative and playful during class and "earn" some points there.

I chatted with some parents outside the class. While there, I caught HQ looking out of the windows several times and giving me cheeky smiles, and calling out to me on his way to the toilet :-) Doing some colouring. HQ asking permission to sharpen his colour pencils at the dustbin behind. Teacher Lee later asked him to sit down as he started helping his new friend to sharpen his colour pencils too :-)At 2.30pm, I saw HQ held up his hand and told the teacher in Mandarin that he was hungry. Teacher laughed and told him to wait for break time. Just after she has spoken, a plump little boy sitting 2 seats behind HQ took a bun out and started munching away. The teacher took his bun away and gave a lecture about not eating in class.

I have more shocking stories about this plump little boy, and how the teacher reacted. I might write about it in a different post ;-)

Break time
Primary One kids get to go out 5 minutes earlier for break, so a total of 25 minutes for them to eat and go to toilet. Ready with his tupperware of food and bottle of water, he was so sweet to wait at the door for Jason, and held his hand on the way to the canteen. We met halfway and we walked together. Jason joined his Mum and sister.

I've never seen HQ eat this fast before. He walloped the whole char siu bun and 2 pieces of nuggets in 5 minutes flat. Must be really hungry due to early lunch. Then he asked me for another ringgit to buy more food to eat. I wondered if his daily pocket money of RM2 is enough?After putting his tupperware and water bottle in his classroom, he went to toilet. Again he waited for Jason at the toilet before going back to class with him :-).

Class continues
Class continued after school break, and parents continued to hover around the classrooms like vultures... haha. But by this time, we saw the Headmistress who's in charge of afternoon session, walking past all classrooms, calling out to parents to leave their kids alone. Parents are to wait in the canteen. She was waving her CANE while talking to us PARENTS.

By the way, canes do not belong to the classrooms. Canes belong to teachers. Every teacher has one, and she bring her cane to wherever she goes. Reminded me of the wands that each witch/ wizard holds in Harry Potter movies o.O".

In the canteen, I exchanged phone numbers with other mummies. Felt very "housewifey" at that moment :-). Hubs joined me to wait for HQ at about 6.15pm.

Class dismisses
Class dismisses at 6.30pm. Primary 1 students get to dismiss earlier by 10 minutes. Students were grouped into 2 - one to go to Gate A to wait for parents, and the other group to go to Gate C to wait for busses/ vans. On the first day, teachers led the groups.

HQ waited for the Van Aunty at Lane 1 of Gate C. Besides HQ, she is also fetching 4 other kids home and her own son who's in Secondary 2, whose class dismisses at 6.45pm. Once we saw that HQ had followed the group, hubs and I went on our own way. I was surprised that the transporter brought the Primary kids to another location to wait for her son. This worried us. Will write about this more in another post.

So far, HQ is ok in following the schedule. He wears a watch and is mindful of the time for each activity. I'm hopeful that the strict rules in school will train him to be more diciplined, responsible, and better at taking care of himself. I was rather afraid he may feel contrained with all the rules and regulations, however, seeing that he's happy going to school and is still as playful and cheeky, I am rest assured :-).

(C) Lee Pei Yi. All rights reserved. Originally published for All images and text can only be republished with permission and links back to the article/ blog.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

happy chinese new year 2012 !

Chinese New Year came in a flash. We didn't do much preparation, except for buying CNY gifts for family and friends, last-minute cleaning, and very last minute sewing for my kids :-).

This little store has been even more busy this time of the year, as Christmas 2011 and CNY 2012 are just a month apart. I was in a sewing frenzy and in a constant panic... haha. Thank you so much, from the bottom of my heart, to my friends and customers for their repeat support. n i v n i v Handmade will not be here without you :-).

We would like to wish all of you a very happy, healthy and prosperous Chinese New Year! May the Year of Dragon brings you all the good things in life!

(C) Lee Pei Yi. All rights reserved. Originally published for All images and text can only be republished with permission and links back to the article/ blog.

Monday, January 9, 2012

HQ's primary one orientation day

HQ attended his school orientation day for Primary 1 on the last day of 2011 (31st Dec 2011). Orientation day only lasted 3 hours - 1 hour each for registration in respective class, headmaster's briefing to parents and school tour for kids (done at the same time seperately) and submission of forms and other miscellaneous fees.

HQ's names starts with B, so we got to be the first person who register... no waiting :-D. After registration, hubs and I went out of the class to fill up required forms. The children were tempororily seated in alphabetical order. There's 48 kids in his class, and 12 classes for Primary One. There's only one kid from HQ's Kindy in his class. HQ quickly made friends with the boy sitting next to him, Jason. Both are English speaking and they clicked together instantly.

I like his class very much for it's the nearest to the toilet and canteen. Empty space on both sides of the class, so it's very windy too :-).

Caught us spying at him from outside the classroom. Jason's Mummy was very interested with HQ's name :-).
Headmaster's Briefing, school rules & security
After registration and filling up some forms, we made our way to the school hall for the headmaster's briefing. We climbed 4 floors to get to the hall *pant pant pant* I expected the place to be crammed with parents, but found that the hall was HUGE and very well aired.

The Headmaster showed some slides on school rules and school map. School rules are very strict... botak hairstyle for boys and boy-cut for girls, no running and making noise in school compound, no visiting the toilet except before class, during reccess and after class. I find the last one too much, but according to my son, he tried asking politely to go to toilet during classes on his first week of school, and the teacher let him go. He told me he just had to get back to class promptly and not loiter around the school compound. Any kid caught not following the school rules will be given points, depending on severity. An accumulated of 40 points results in the kid getting expelled o.O".

I like the school's security and order. The school used to have many doors, but now all are locked permanently for safety, except for 3 main gayes. Anyone foreign (parents included) wanting to enter the school during classes will have to produce an IC and register his/ her details at the guardhouse. Only one gate (B) to come in the school, and 2 gates (A & C) to go out after school. Parents fetch kids from the main gate, and for kids sitting in school bus or private vans, they wait at another gate. This gate is like a bus station, with 10 lanes for the buses to drive in and has a queing rail for each lane. I'm actually very impressed with this :-).

We were quite dissapointed that there's no extra-curricular classes for Primary One kids, except Tee-Kwan-Do. Ah well, will wait for next year then.

School tour
While we were at the briefing, the kids followed their class teacher for a tour around the school. I remembered when I was in Primary One, I was intimidated by the school. I remembered that I got lost too when I went to the toilet on my first day of school. I'm thankful to find that HQ could navigate between the toilet, canteen, class, teacher's room, assembly area before class, and public phone effortlessly.

Here's after the orientation, HQ couldn't wait to give us a school tour :-). Catering at the canteen
I enquired about catering at the canteen. Like other school, catered kids have their own designated seats. I'm quite happy with the fees of RM 50 per month, but was aghast with the menu :-(. Every week the kids are served with fried mee, fried kwei tiew, porridge/ fried rice, chee cheong fun, and instant noodles. I'm happy with fried rice/ porridge. I'm ok with my kids eating mee, kwei tiew and chee cheong fun occasionally, but not every week. And instant noodles! This is definitely a big NO! I thought the canteen should have better options, and since HQ said he prefers to buy his own food too, we obliged. Good for him to learn to manage his money too.

Stretching his legs after orientation. Looks like this would be the only time he could run freely without being caught o.O".
That's the end of my long-winded account of HQ's orientation day. Can see that HQ was happy and excited on that day. Looks like a good start :-).

(C) Lee Pei Yi. All rights reserved. Originally published for All images and text can only be republished with permission and links back to the article/ blog.

HQ's first trilogy

HQ: 6y 7m old

Just want to note that 31st Dec 2011 was also the same day where HQ finished reading The Enchanted Woods trilogy (The Enchanted Woods, The Faraway Tree & The Folks at the Faraway Tree).

He now loves to read these books before bedtime every night and every morning after he wakes up. He has been telling us stories and characters of the books very often and very excitedly (I admire his memory!).

He said these are now his favourite books and he will start reading the first book again! This just shows how engaging these books are :-).

(C) Lee Pei Yi. All rights reserved. Originally published for All images and text can only be republished with permission and links back to the article/ blog.


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