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MOE Kindergarten vs. My First Skool. Which Kindergarten Is Finest To Put together My Baby for Main One?


As soon as a baby turns 4, dad and mom usually begin occupied with which kindergarten to ship him/her to. Whereas most often hold their youngster of their current preschool centre, a small group of oldsters have opted to modify to MOE Kindergarten as an alternative, out of worry that they may get allotted to a major college that they don’t want for, or that their youngster might not be capable to address Main One. However are these fears warranted, and is there actually a necessity to modify? I examine this additional on this article.

There’s little question that Main One registration in Singapore is a nerve-racking affair. Which is why when the federal government launched MOE Kindergartens (MKs) and added it as an eligibility beneath Part 2A(2), it supplied a method for a lot of to leap forward of the “queue” in registering their youngster for major college.

The present Main One registration course of consists of seven phases – Part 1, 2A(1), 2A(2), 2B, 2C, 2C Supplementary and three. This meant that almost all of households would begin at 2C, except the father or mother is prepared to commit at the very least 40 hours of volunteer work to the varsity for Part 2B. Part 2A(1) prioritises dad and mom who’re present alumni or members of the varsity, whereas Part 2A(2) are for the kids of employees members or kids whose dad and mom or siblings beforehand studied within the college. From 2022 onwards, the registration course of has been simplified to Part 2A – kids who’re finding out within the MOE kindergarten situated within the major college get precedence right here as nicely.

This quickly turned a powerful draw issue, particularly for households who would in any other case have to attend for Part 2B or 2C earlier than they’re allotted a slot – however often by then,  competitors is intense (e.g. 3X oversubscribed) and infrequently met with disappointment.

The poll consequence for Ai Tong Main, ranked among the many high 3 faculties in Singapore. Supply right here.

However earlier than you resolve on the place to ship your youngster to for kindergarten, you need to first ask your self – what are your goals? Your reply to this could then simply aid you slender down which preschools to start out .

That can assist you alongside, right here’s my record (ranked from most necessary to the least):

  • Charges and affordability
  • Distance
  • High quality of training
  • Higher, extra atas amenities
  • Acquire larger precedence admission to your required major college

As an example, if the charges are your largest concern, then personal operators corresponding to Maplebear / Mindchamps / Brighton Montessori / Etonhouse (4-digits a month) will clearly be out of your finances. However should you care extra concerning the distance – given that you just’ll need to ferry your youngster back and forth every single day – then you definitely’ll be restricted by the preschools which might be close to to the place you reside. 

Whereas some dad and mom are prepared to pay extra for a more moderen or greater preschool with extra amenities, I really feel that it isn’t needed as there isn’t a proof to show that extra luxurious areas assist kids to study higher. Furthermore, I particularly didn’t need an air-conditioned preschool as a result of I would like my kids to grasp that aircon is a luxurious, somewhat than vital (in any other case, they’re gonna get a impolite shock once they attain major college + local weather change).

In our case, we cared most about:

Quick ahead to right now and Nate might be K1 subsequent yr, which suggests we’ve to resolve on whether or not to maintain him in his present preschool, or swap him out to a MOE kindergarten subsequent yr (like what some dad and mom select to do).

However the truth is, we didn’t even contemplate the latter, till I noticed some mummies on-line point out that MOE kindergartens can “higher” put together the kids for Main 1. Was this actually true? Thus, I got down to examine and in addition checked with different mummies (with children who had modified from their authentic preschool to MK) on how their expertise was like.

Listed below are my findings:

Why do some dad and mom swap to MOE Kindergarten?

Essentially the most cited causes by dad and mom have been that they wished their youngster to get precedence admission throughout Main 1 registration (Part 2A) and be higher ready for Main 1.

After all, there are different benefits to attending MOE Kindergarten:

  • Bilingualism – English and mom tongues (i.e. Chinese language, Malay and Tamil) are taught on the centres
  • Low charges – $150 for its 4-hour programme. Further charges payable should you require KCare (full-day service i.e. 7am – 7pm), that are additionally to be paid throughout the June and December holidays (max $415 per thirty days for 2022/2023 earlier than subsidy)
  • Earlier publicity to major college surroundings – MKs are situated inside major faculties

Do observe that MKs comply with MOE’s calendar of college phrases and faculty holidays i.e. it doesn’t function throughout the March, June, September and December holidays. So if you don’t go for KCare, you will have to consider easy methods to interact your youngster throughout these lengthy breaks.  

Is MOE Kindergarten academically stronger?

That is the place consensus differ. After all, whereas MOE Kindergarten advantages from having a curriculum designed by MOE, it’s based mostly on the identical Nurturing Early Learners Framework that different kindergarten programmes in Singapore are guided by.

I looked for on-line critiques, and based mostly on what another mummies have shared, it doesn’t appear to be the case that MOE Kindergarten is essentially superior to different current programmes.

This mummy shared that her daughter finds MK “too boring” and never stimulating sufficient.
One other mummy wrote that MOE kindergarten isn’t “academically stronger”, as her K1 son is now studying stuff that he had already learnt in nursery at his earlier centre.

Furthermore, as a agency believer that oldsters play an equal (if no more necessary position) in a baby’s studying and growth, I spend wherever between 5 – 10 hours per week educating him via books, worksheets and different actions. On condition that Nate is now 3+ years outdated, and may already rely from 1 to 100, do easy addition and subtraction (lower than 10), in addition to learn and spell a number of phrases…I’m not totally satisfied {that a} MOE kindergarten will essentially practice Nate to turn into academically stronger at this juncture.

Whereas I like that the MOE syllabus focuses on studying actions via play and exposes the kids to bilingualism, Nate is presently already getting the identical from his academics at My First Skool. What’s extra, each programmes are additionally beneath the identical Nurturing Early Learners framework set out by MOE.

Which is why I hope the above helps to clear up the misperception that MKs are stronger academically than personal preschools, as a result of this may increasingly or might not be the case. In case your youngster is already enrolled in an current preschool for nursery, then you could need to communicate with the varsity and decide their “syllabus” for your self earlier than leaping to any hasty conclusions based mostly on rumour.

Will your youngster miss out if he/she doesn’t attend a MK? Once more, I doubt so, however right here’s what one other mummy has to say:

Why We Selected My First Skool over MOE Kindergarten

Your decision-making inputs might range, however will probably comply with the identical thought course of as ours. In our case, there are 3 major faculties inside 1km of our home:

College College A College B College C
Rating* Prime 50 #80+ #120+
Our eligibility Part 2A
(I’m a former pupil)
Part 2C Part 2C
*Out of 180 major faculties. Be aware that MOE doesn’t publish a proper rating of major faculties, so these are based mostly on on-line recognition rankings as an alternative.

Given our circumstances, it’s fairly probably that Nate might be allotted to College A, particularly as its balloting historical past reveals that each one Singapore Residents who utilized throughout Part 2A(2) within the earlier years efficiently secured a spot. Then again, the two MOE Kindergartens are in College B and C, which have been all undersubscribed all through all 7 phases in earlier years and had by no means been totally crammed within the decade anyway (25% to 41% leftover spots).

Since MK’s precedence admission doesn’t make a distinction (in our case) both method, the subsequent consideration have been the charges and syllabus.

However whereas the low charges have been positively attractive, it comes with a number of trade-offs:

  • There might be no MK classes throughout the college holidays. However should you signed your youngster up for KCare as nicely, they are going to be in KCare all through the vacations.
  • Nate is already accustomed to his present preschool, and has been thriving there. He loves his classmates, so taking him out would possibly really be extra merciless. 
  • His academics have taught him for nearly 2 years, so that they already know what he’s good at, what he wants to enhance on, and so forth.
  • MK’s hours are too early for us (8am should you’re allotted to the morning session). We presently ship Nate to highschool at 9am.

Contemplating how a lot Nate enjoys attending his present preschool, it would really be the crueller choice to take him out.

In the event you’re questioning why we selected My First Skool for his nursery years, take a look at my earlier weblog article right here the place I detailed my findings after visiting 10 preschools.

Will My First Skool put together my youngster for Main One?

In the event you’re anxious as as to whether My First Skool will put together your youngster nicely sufficient for Main College, strive to not let your fears get forward of you. Do not forget that MKs have been solely launched in 2014, whereas within the final 40+ years of My First Skool’s working historical past, quite a few batches of youngsters have “graduated” and adjusted simply advantageous in major college.

We should additionally not neglect that getting ready our youngster for major college goes past simply lecturers – there’s additionally the social and emotional growth to think about, as eloquently articulated by this mom’s response to a different mummy asking if she ought to swap her youngster to a MK:

Disclosure: Within the midst of writing this text, I checked in with My First Skool to seek out out extra about how they put together kids for major college. This portion beneath is subsequently sponsored by them.

My First Skool (MFS) empowers kids to study via facilitated play experiences to help a baby’s studying and holistic growth. That is performed through their pedagogical strategy referred to as PETAL – Taking part in, Exploring, Considering, and Making use of Studying.

My First Skool additionally creates purposeful play actions in accordance with the 6 studying domains set out in MOE’s Nurturing Early Learners Framework. Right here’s a abstract of what I’ve seen Nate’s academics do with him at school to date:

  • Language & Literacy – present and inform classes, writing practices, grammar and punctuation, age-appropriate studying
  • Numeracy – match, type and evaluate, time, order and sequence, counting cash, apply addition and subtraction
  • Discovery of the World – subject journeys, outside play, environmental consciousness, (easy) scientific experiments, remark and presentation of findings
  • Motor Abilities Growth – getting dressed independently, self-feeding with utensils, self-grooming, toileting, fundamental college duties e.g. clearing tables and watering crops
  • Aesthetics & Inventive Expression – music and dance, every day singing and rhymes, 2D/3D artwork creation
  • Social & Emotional Growth – small group initiatives, respect and empathy for others, recognise conditions the place they should search assist from a trusted grownup (e.g. bullying), decision-making and penalties
Nate throughout a show-and-tell session

To arrange kids additional for his or her transition to major college, My First Skool additionally simulates the surroundings by remodeling a studying nook right into a major college setting e.g. a canteen or bookshop.

K2 college students additionally get to go to a major college (in particular person, though this pandemic has warranted a shift to digital visits in the meanwhile), which is then adopted up by varied sharing classes by their academics on what they will count on within the following yr, corresponding to what topics they may study and who’re the individuals they will search assist from in class. Throughout these conversations, academics can even maintain discussions and encourage the kids to share their emotions concerning the upcoming change, in addition to train methods on what to do in the event that they encounter bullying.

Youngsters get uncovered to each the true major college surroundings (via a bodily go to) in addition to simulated settings to assist them find out about independence and making choices by utilizing “play cash”, for example.

Nate has been attending My First Skool for nearly 2 years now, and each my husband and I’ve noticed nice enhancements in his social abilities, manners, life abilities, and so forth. As an example, I wasn’t having a lot luck getting him to put on his personal sneakers and hold his toys after use, however as a result of his academics at My First Skool saved emphasizing it as nicely, sooner or later he “magically” began cooperating with us! He has additionally grown extra unbiased, and is ready to now wash his personal arms, convey his bowl to the kitchen after ending his meal, pack his personal bag, and so forth. Nate’s case isn’t an remoted one – lots of our buddies who despatched their kids to MFS have reported the identical.

I’ve to say My First Skool has actually performed an awesome job on this facet, and I’m actually grateful to his academics for serving to him progress so shortly in the previous couple of years.

Which is why we determined there’s no want to modify Nate out to a MOE Kindergarten. I’m assured that My First Skool was, and can proceed to be, one of the best place for him.

Eager to enrol your youngster in a longtime and inexpensive preschool (like we did)? Click on right here to register for My First Skool right now!




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