We’re in the middle of N’s second week of school, and even though he really enjoys himself when he’s in school, we still struggle to get him to school every morning. He keeps telling us that “school is very long”, which is true, because back in Singapore, he’s in school for about 3.5 hours daily, while here, he has lessons for four hours on two days, and on the remaining three days, he has lunch in school, then attends enrichment classes for another 1.5 hours. Also, school used to start at 1130am for him, but now, his lessons begin at 830am, so you can imagine how tough it is for him to wake up early.
Just the other morning, while I was getting him ready for school, he came up with a string of excuses to get out of going to school.
N: I think I cannot go to sch today, Mummy. I have a stomachache. Me: Oh is it bad? N: *nods pitifully* Me: Do you have diarrhoea? N: No. Me: How bad is it? Shall I put some oil for you? N: No, no need.
After a while
N: Mummy, my hand hurts. I can’t lift it up. See? *proceeds to demonstrate how his arm flops back down to his side when he tries to lift it up* Me: Oh, maybe it’s because you played with your Lego for too long yesterday. Maybe you shouldn’t play with it anymore. Shall we give away your Lego to someone else? N: No, can still play. I want to play with my Lego.
A few seconds later
N: My legs got no strength, Mummy. I can’t stand up. *dramatically falls to the ground, then ‘tries’ to stand up, before falling down again. Cue pitiful look again.* Me: Hmmm… You seemed fine when we were at the playground yesterday. Maybe we shouldn’t go to the playground or oh, I think you can’t go for Little Kickers anymore. Oh, and since you can’t stand up, I’ll ask Daddy not to bring you for tennis or swimming either, k? N: No, can la. I think I’m fine la.
I know that he’s just trying to get out of going to school, because he’s perfectly fine when he isn’t getting ready for school. When we get to school, he usually goes into his classroom so quickly that I have to call him back to give him a goodbye hug. He can’t wait to play with all the toys there! There’s a Whatsapp group chat for the teachers and mums of his class, and N always looks happy in the photos and videos, so I think he should be fine. It’ll just take him a while more to get used to this new routine. Thankfully, he has made a few friends, and his teachers tell me that he is adjusting well.
Mr “I think I cannot go to school” taking a nap after school