Tuesday, March 19
With much ado and fanfare, this boy graduated from kindergarten last week. Two years vanished in a poof and now here we are with a genki, semi-literate, functionally bilingual Nicolai. Japanese kindergarten is not for the faint of heart. In which I mean lazy. It is a full-time job keeping up with all the events and activities that go on in a regular school year and before you know it, your kid is bowing to his sensei and singing sayonara to kindergarten. Literally...
We were lucky to be able to send both of the boys to private kindergartens, both valuing that critical stage of childhood by creating an environment that encouraged creativity, cooperation, and social awareness. Academic prowess is not central in the Japanese kindergarten; it is more about cultivating experiences that the child can carry with them through life. Sebastian's kindergarten followed a Piaget approach, granting the children lots of freedom and space for discovery. Nico's kindergarten was a Buddhist school so regular lessons in manners, sensitivity, and compassion were taught in the week.
All in all, it has been a very wonderful experience for our family and I know Nicolai is ready to start school in April. We'll have a year off from kindergarten until Colette starts (we like them to have 4 years at home in English) which will be a good chance to catch up on other aspects of our life.
Then we'll be ready to start round three.
It will be hard at first to get used to this guy being a first grader.