+ First 2 weeks of Nursery School (almost) finished +
Our lil Ichiro Stanley was accepted and enrolled in a great nursery/preschool in our area called Wakaba (new leaf).
The principal (who coincidentally studied at Langara college in Vancouver) spearheaded the creation of this new school (next to an older similar institution) – a beautiful facility, purpose-built for a calm, healthy learning atmosphere for kids from 0 to 4 years old.
It has everything: healthy lunches, playground with unicycles, solar panels, cute hats & everything is kid height – And yes the kids clean up the place.
We loaded up a bunch of gear for him the first day including his own futon + various changes of clothes all with his name written (mix of Katakana & Hiragana If you’re keeping score) & and a binder of information updated daily.
Started with an hour per day, then up to an hour and a half, then three hours and before you know it will be a “full day“. The school is a pleasant 15 minute walk from our house – which also passes by the elementary school he’ll here eventually attend.
Great seeing all the little students in their uniforms proudly marching to school with their fresh backpacks. And it’s also a great chance for me to show my face around the community more.
Recently obtained a bicycle with a baby seat for my new friend (thanks Daniel) and as my strength and confidence develops from the “illness” will try that out but in the meanwhile, me, the wife and our wonderful parents take turns. with the drop-offs and pick-ups.￼
Not surprisingly being part of “generation quarantine”, like his classmates, he hasn’t had much of a chance to socialize with other kids before this so it’s a bit of a transition with some tears :(. He’s such a jolly happy boy at home and I’m sure soon his same personality will flourish at the new school.￼
The teachers are incredibly empathetic, thoughtful and professional and I feel very fortunate that we were able to get into this school.
Note: Despite Japan’s declining birth rate and encouragement for “more kids“ there’s still a lack of nursery schools and it was important for us (due to my wife’s working and my disability) to be accepted into a facility close to home.￼
PS I’m using the word “nursery school” or “pre-school” (for hoikuen 保育園) as it’s much more organized, structured and dareisay studious than a “daycare”.
Eventually I will start going in to help out (hang out really) with some English conversation for the four-year-old kids and yes, I’ll definitely be Santa Claus come Christmas time.
Oh & there is usually a “first day ceremony” where the parents dress up in their best clothes and there’s, I don’t know, talks and bowing & stuff but, not surprisingly, it was canceled because of *current public health concerns* ~ As such we didn’t take the customary ceremonial photo but did snap a picture of him and mom in front of some flowers on the first day and then he & i paused on the walk home the other day on the dirt path amidst fields & canals in his stroller (you can catch the school building in the background).
As always, more to share but it’s been a big schedule transition for not just him, for your humble correspondent as well (In other words, i am constantly exhausted and wiped out but hey that’s nothing new right).
Came here to say, “I’m proud of him and grateful for this opportunity” hooray Wakaba & Ichiro.