X’s first official “enrichment” class 


A picture says a thousand words.

After “playing” soccer with the big brothers, X demanded for his own pair of soccer boots, socks and jersey. We used this to bait him into agreeing to attend a trial class with his brother’s soccer sxhool. It would be his second attempt because he had walked off the field a few months ago, barely 10min into the class.

He exhibited reluctance initially from fear of new environment, then fear of being unable to execute the drills and eventually from “tiredness”. 

Thankfully, he kept his eye on the prize and hanged on. 

With that, our 3.5yo completed a 2 hours class.

I personally liked soccer classes because of the sheer amount of stamina the kids could gain. I was looking forward to X’s next possible “enrichment” class in September. 

Hopefully, these exposures would aid him in adapting to ski lessons end of the year.

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The Youth Day long weekend – Part 3

Of all days, we went to KidZania on a very crowded day. There was a Qatar family day too. 

It opened at 9am. When I reached at 9, this was the sight.


It didn’t help to know that the distribution for pilot passes started at 9am when we only entered the park at 930am.


I wished we had paid more attention to the distribution timings but it was so confusing and so crowded. We also had so many things to figure out and work on. 

Anyway, by the time we figured out, time had passed and people had multiplied!

So these were definitely jobs on the radar when the kids headed back in future.


My biggest tips would be:

1. Bring a charger/powerbank. We can only charge our phones at cafes and parents’ lounge.

2. Do the admin work such as banking and passport making when the crowd thinned, usually during/after lunch 

3. Attend the university at the end of the day if you can’t find an activity to join i.e. Queue had closed.

4. Just be prepared to return

5. Always count the number of kids in the queue. It sucked to be bump off if you were the last kid. 

6. Kids did not always have to make their dough at lunch time. We could just buy for them if they did not feel like doing as a job, like our kids.

1. Surgeon

2. Clock tower dancers 

3. Actor

4. Photographer 

5. Policeman

6. City parade dancer 

7. Courier 

8. University student 

The Youth Day long weekend – Part 2

It was also the first Sunday of semester 2. It meant getting back into the groove of Sunday classes.

8-930: swimming 

1130-12: piano

130-3: mandarin nurturing course 

What made the Sunday special was that we went to shop for the iPad Pro’s final accessory and a potluck party with Z’s soccer mates. 

The kids had so much fun that they crashed out by the time they got home. As for the adults, we ate so much that we also crashed out when we got home. 😂


 

X’s funny talk and antics 

One late night, I was catching up on news and updating Mr H on how absurd some news were. X walked out and said, “Can you stop talking? Kor kor and I are sleeping.”

After that, he proceeded to order more milk for supper feed. Mr H made the formula milk and passed to X. However, X replied, “I don’t want more milk. I was just joking.”

These days, he liked to ask, “What do you think? I am asking you.”

As usual, I was fairly amused by the 3.5 year old toddler.

The Youth Day long weekend – Part 1

It had been eons since ‘Youth Day’ meant anything to us.

With Z in P1, it meant it was a free day, creating a long weekend for him. It was not a long weekend for us but I took leave on Monday to bring him out. It was also surprising for us to  know that he had homework from school!

We basically reserved the entire Saturday for him to catch up on his school homework as well as the assessment work which I gave him. The key thing I hated about bringing the kids on holidays was not the additional expenditure or putting up with less than stellar behaviour. It was Z’s regression in the learning journey.

Long story short, it was such a relaxing and fun holiday that he had post-holiday blues (he had been like this since post-babyhood). He was whiny about going for his sports classes and the assessment work that I gave him.

For the first week after school reopening, he was disinterested, slow and tardy in finishing his work. He took an exceptional long time to deliver low quality work, which meant tons of corrections to walk through. As a result, we had to spend our Saturday afternoon resolving this. Poor X had to suffer along with his brother by being cooped up at home.

We broke the terrible Saturday spell by bringing the boys for an “Ice Age” movie with our neighbours. Unfortunately, he had to catch up on corrections after the movie. If I was a persistent parent, Mr H was stubborn X 10 times, so he kept Z up with endless corrections. Both X and I went to went in fatigue, and we had not even done much the entire day, so I could not imagine how Z felt.

Z and e-learning 

The eventual story was that I decided to sell the iPad mini 2 in the end.

However, I asked Z to pitch in $200 towards the purchase of an iPad Pro 9.7″. I told him it was more worthwhile to pool our resources to share a bigger and more powerful iPad than to hold onto to 1 old iPad mini 2 and 1 new iPad mini 4.

He was excited and game for the idea. With that, he became a shareholder of the iPad Pro. 

I tested some of the websites the school was using and they worked fine on the iPad. No flash-based materials so far, phew! If there was any flash-based materials, I guess he would have to use our laptop or MacBook Pro. 

I thought having a mobile learning device would be more useful than lugging books around. 

Given that myon was also useful for X, it would be a handy tool. 

I also thought Z should pick up typing skills and the Smart Keyboard should provide a good training ground.

With that, Z had a mobile and digital learning environment. I guessed I would be doing a tiering scheme, I.e he had to complete a certain number of tasks before he could download a game app. 

iPad Pro – the digital, mobile learning toolï»ż

I configured the iPad Pro for ease of Z’s use.

I bookmarked the web links from school and tested to see if all loaded well. Thankfully, they all did. It was a sign that there was no use of flash!

Websites:
-eZhishi
-Xuele
-MyOn
-McOnline
-C2hamps (for parents)
-School homepage

I also downloaded many apps after checking reviews online so I sorted them into 5 main categories.

App category:
1. English
2. Math
3. Chinese
4. Coding
5. Typing

I also set up music and podcasts. In particular, I subscribed to TED, science & literature podcasts.

There was also a new iTunes university app but it seemed too deep for Z at this level.

I also added other items alongside for X and hope to add some iBooks in future so that we would not be so network dependent. It was a good companion for queues at KidZania!