December 11, 2006

Three obstacles to a preschool program

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Emma is 3 years and 2 moths old. My sister said: "In China, when a child turns into 3, the parents would take care to send them to various programs, like art, music, dancing, sports, blah, blah ..."

I know. There are so many programs for preschoolers that are easily accessible and generally affordable. My nephew went to a few in a row after he turned 3 (he can draw a little bit, is good at basketball and football. However and unfortunately, he is incorrigibly obsessed with Video games. He is wild and unruly, a huge headache for his parents and grandparents. Well that is another topic). I, too, want Emma to receive some early exposure to arts, music and acrobatics too. Who knows? She might cultivate some lifetime passion because of that, or at least a hobby.

Easier said than done. As always, three obstacles: time, distance and money.

Time-wise, I work full time and she goes to school full time, while a lot of programs are offered on weekdays. For the few that have Saturdays as an option, some of them are set at afternoon time like 2 or 3pm. Bomber.

Then distance. This is such a car-for-granted nation. However, I do not have a car to use on Saturdays (the only days that work for me). And I dread riding train or bus, or using a combination of both and then walking another extra 5 blocks. Why I blindly chose to live on the northern edge of city?

Then money, money, money. There are cheap ones, the ones offered nearly free by city park district programs. But there are more likely expensive ones, private for profit ones. I do not know why in US, child care constantly causes monetary concerns, especially for one like me who is just dangling above the lowest ladder of middle class, not poor enough to be eligible for financial assistance, yet far from rich not to feel the burden of good child care. (Then next year, I will doubly burdened.)

How I want to send Emma to a Montessori school! Or freely relocate to a good place where good schools are guaranteed. No luck in at least 5 years, probably.

Read somewhere, someone says in a sense, you feel much more secure in China. True. Very True.

Monday, December 11, 2006
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