Finding and starting @ school in America

first day of school
First day of school

So Marlo started at Martin Luther King School and will not start in first grade (group 3 in the Netherlands), but in Kindergarten instead (it’s between group 2 and 3 in the Netherlands). At first we didn’t like that at all, because in the Netherlands he would go to group 3. However, Marlo is shy to make some new friends around here. Also starting to write and read English right from the start of the school year would be difficult while not speaking it yet. He will be okay and let’s hope he will not be bored at school.

Then there is Nolan, because he will be 4 in November and would go to school in our home country, the company had to arrange for a private school in Rio Rancho. So that was something we managed to do in July. We found the house on Monday already, giving us ample time on Tuesday to look for a school not too far from Marlo his school. We had 4 different options, but the one we chose is the Montessori Leap School. It is a little school and the classrooms did feel as a group 1/2 in the Netherlands. Also Mrs Oh and Mrs Griffin are very friendly and really know what they are doing. LEAP school feels homey and we really like it!

At the first school day of Nolan, I would stay there so I could translate the English into Dutch for him. Marlo didn’t need to go to school that day so he stayed too. For the whole day they could play together and have fun on the swings and the bikes outside. Inside they would learn some rules (there are so much more rules for the boys at school then in Netherlands) on how to behave inside and outside the classroom and also about being polite to each other. Then after half a day Nolan had enough of school, so we went home for some time to relax.

Marlo’s school had a meet the teacher day on Tuesday, so Marlo and I went together to meet his teacher Miss Elysio (most of the schools here in the USA work like that, which gives you a nice chance to already meet the teacher before school actually starts). She told us that she had another child last year who could only speak Mandarin and after some time she would speak English perfectly. I filled in some paperwork about Marlo and after that morning I thought Marlo would be fine, and the teacher seems like a really kind and sweet teacher!

But then comes the day they need to be left behind at school and I would go back home. There were many tears from the boys and me. It’s hard to leave them behind, because you know they don’t know the language that well. Marlo did sit outside the first day with a teacher for 2 hours before he went in. But the day after it went better, and after 1 week he did go to the playground without any tears. What for us seems like a little change that we can’t bring him inside the classroom is a really big change for him. I can understand why the rules are like this around here, while there are 850 children at this school. But it seems more difficult for him. Also for Nolan it was not easy, but he also did better each day. He started with a few half days, but after just one week he is managing to go full days. Yeah!!

In the classes both of them are doing really great!! Marlo brought back some work he did during school time and he really did an awesome job on those! From Nolan I am getting pictures from the school that show him being fine or learning for example math in the big children’s room. They are clever boys and I’m really proud of them and how they manage to adjust so fast already.

And thanks to google translate! If the teachers and the kids don’t understand each other they can use the translate app, which works great!!

How were the first days at school for your children?

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