Friday, June 28, 2013

Toddler School: My son's Summer class experience

Even before I gave birth to Vito, I was already planning to have Rocco attend Summer School.  I pictured it to be our time together since I knew that I would be busy taking care of a new baby.  Things did take a different direction (with Vito passing away at 33 weeks) and accompanying Rocco to Summer School last May was part of the healing process.  I got to divert my attention and focused my energy on Rocco.

I enrolled Rocco in the Integrated School for Young Children (ISYC) in Marikina in their Summer Program.   I was looking for a school in my area (Antipolo/ Marikina) and came across a couple of good reviews on ISYC.  I visited their website, called the school and scheduled a school tour.  What I initially liked was that the I was able to directly speak to one of the school owners, teacher Leah who was very accommodating.  

During my visit, I was pretty surprised that they are not located in some old house or building that was converted into a school.  ISYC has a two-storey building equipped with a mini outdoor playground, and a pretty big multi-purpose hall.  All classrooms are air conditioned.  They have ample security and yayas to assist the children. Teacher Leah had us briefly observe one of the Toddler Class as well. On the same day,  we signed up for their Summer Playgroup Class.  The total fee was P5,500 covering a total of  eight sessions every M-W-F (the last day was a culminating activity for all the Summer classes) for three weeks from 9am to 10:30am.  The fee was reasonable comparing it to what I used to pay when Rocco was going to Gymboree, which was around 4k for a once a week class for 4 weeks.   Teacher to student ratio is 1:5, and the child needs to be accompanied by one adult.  Majority of their graduates would be going to Ateneo and Miriam, which is a good indication of the quality of education that they have.

On the first day of school, Teacher Leah provided us with the Syllabus, as well as the schedule that we would follow throughout the program. They had free play, circle time (singing and dancing), activities focused on shape recognition and story telling time.  I think I was the one more excited for Rocco to go to school than he was.   I also never imagined that it was going to be a little challenging.  There were good and bad days.  There were days when he would cry because he didn't want to stay inside the classroom or would want to eat his snack or he didn't want to do the activity.  But we were able to surpass those, thank God! 

The culminating activity, which was held on their last day, was a testament that he did somehow enjoy going to school and was ready to showcase the things he learned.  I was one proud momma (even if he was the only one who refused to sit down while performing), beaming with pride with what my little boy accomplished. I was secretly stopping tears from falling.  They were handed their certificates of attendance and we were each given a clear book containing all their artworks and a music CD that contained all of the songs that they sang in class.

I was satisfied with Rocco's summer experience in ISYC and am looking forward to enrolling him in their Toddler class when he turns three next year. I was informed though that I should apply as early as December since the classes get filled up easily.  The tuition fee is at 75k, which I think is one of the highest here in our area, but looking at their facilities and the quality of education, it is fairly reasonable.  Now it's time to start saving!

Outdoor Playgound
First day of school: Rocco loved jumping on the trampoline.
First day of school: Rocco playing with the letters.

Free play

Teacher Michelle had to give an impromptu snack time.

One of Rocco's artworks.
Free play.  Teach Michelle just taking solo pictures of the kids because it was impossible to get a decent class picture.
Practicing the day before their culminating activity.

ISYC Summer Culminating Activity
Far right: there goes my son who refused to sit down :) 
My son performing, standing ;)

ISYC website:

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