Kindergarten School

6 Reasons Why I’m Loving Yuri’s Big School

It’s no secret that Yuri’s current school now was not our top choice when we were initially school-hunting. I didn’t really not like this school — it’s just that I wanted to try something new because almost ten years of my life was spent inside this very campus.

Then again, life rarely goes according to plan, and we found ourselves enrolling in the very school that I voted against! We had to consider the logistics and the practicality of doing so — it’s just the most ideal choice at the moment considering those factors. Buuut after a couple of weeks of going to school and parent orientations, one being the first PTA meeting for this school year, I think I’m realising the merits of the decision.

Going to my first PTA meeting, wet uncombed hair and all

1. No heavy bags for the kids

I recently read in Mommy Fleur‘s blog how her daughter has to deal with a heavy school bag every day. I remember doing the same as a child; all my books (an average of 5-7) stuffed into my backpack together with my notebooks (8-10), pencil case, and other school stuff. And we haven’t included the baon yet.

I was pleased to find out that I didn’t need to buy Yuri a huge bag for school. The young children at school, from preschool/kindergarten to 2nd grade, all have lockers where they keep their books and notebooks. I’m not sure about the graders, but for senior kinder, they also have cubbies inside the classroom where all their stuff — art materials, toiletries, extra clothes — are hidden.

We’re only required to bring home the kids’ books and notebooks every weekend, so for the rest of the week, they don’t have to bring anything save for pencils, some supplies, and their baon. 

Yuri’s bag just holds his handbook, pencil case, a supply case (crayons, glue, etc.), wipes, towel, and a sanitizer. It looks big but it’s actually super light. 

(In fact, during the PTA meeting last Saturday, the teachers reminded the parents not to let their kids use huge stroller bags anymore because they didn’t need to!)

2. Little homework (so far…)

Okay, it’s too early to speak about homework, but so far, we’ve only received one homework. A one-page assignment that my son completed in 20 minutes (with water breaks in between because who doesn’t do homework without taking unnecessary breaks). I hope I won’t have to eat my words! 😀

This is NOT our homework. The kids are having a quiz on all subjects (!) this Wednesday so I printed out some free worksheets for Yuri to use. 

3. Basic curriculum

To be honest, I am not 100% sure of what takes place inside the classroom because Yuri is not big on giving out details. I did manage to squeeze out some information from him. Twice. Since school began.

So I’m kinda relying on my feelers for this one. Based on their books and notes, though, I think the curriculum is more literacy-based. There are perhaps 4 subjects dedicated to literacy, and I’m happy about this because I believe literacy is the foundation of knowledge (we did choose to enrol Yuri in Eye Level’s English program as his pre-school preparation). Then there’s Math. I like that there are no unnecessary subjects! Of course, there’s art, PE, and other minor subjects, but I like how they focus on subjects that are the building blocks of knowledge.

(For reading, I like that they teach letters in phonetic order. Instead of A, B, and C, it’s A, M, S, and so on.)

4. No junk food

Twenty years ago, I was a young kid who transferred to ACD from another school. I was shocked because junk food was not allowed inside the campus! There were no junk food sold in the canteen (which looked way different than how it looks now), and even the drinks were natural fruit juices without sugar. So I grew up without a thing for junk food (carbs is another story).

The quirky canteen in all its quirkiness

I’m glad to know they are still implementing this. The food sold in the canteen has no preservatives, added sugar, or MSG. Drinks are still natural fruit juices, bread freshly baked right inside the campus. All my life, that’s the normal canteen food that I have known, and I took it for granted, but I guess it’s a different thing when you’re a parent. After a couple of weeks of schooling, Yuri is now more conscious of what he eats. Even though he likes candies and the occasional chips, he knows they’re bad for him and, get this, requests for healthy snacks only. Amazing!

The boy’s choice of snack. I wonder how long this “consciousness phase” would last?

Kindergarteners must bring baon with them because they can’t really buy their own food yet. Aside from junk food, they’re also discouraged from bringing sugary stuff. As much as I would like to bake bread from scratch for Yuri’s baon, alas, it’s beyond my powers. So what I usually pack for him are sandwiches, cookies, ham, cheese, and fruits.

5. Zero waste policy

Here’s a new policy that we didn’t have when I was still a student. Apparently, aside from the no junk food policy, the school is also implementing zero waste policy now. You shouldn’t send your child with baon e.g. crackers still in its packaging. Same goes for boxed milk or juices or virtually anything that comes with a wrapper. Parents are encouraged to remove the wrappers at home and use food containers instead. If a child does bring something with a wrapper, the wrapper is put inside the child’s bag instead of in the trash can. As they say, uuwi kasama ng bata ang dinala nyang basura.

I was amazed to see students, even the little kids, practising CLAYGO (Clean As You Go) at the canteen. No wonder the tables are clean all day!

As a neat freak, I don’t have anything bad to say about this policy at all. I am in full support of it! When I started packing Yuri’s baon for school, I didn’t even know about this policy yet. I just really dislike trash and even though Yuri knows how to throw his own trash, I was worried he might forget in a setting where there’s distraction everywhere. Also, food rearranged in a container looks a lot more appetising that something that’s still inside the packaging!

6. No gadgets allowed!

Gadgets are allowed but only for the bigger kids, like from Grade 4 and beyond. For small children, gadgets are not allowed not only because they are not exactly the most careful people in the world but also because gadgets distract the children from learning. I really love how there’s no little kid holding a screen in sight when I’m inside the campus. Instead, everyone’s running and sweating and panting!

What do you like about your school?

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  • Reply Berlin | Momi Berlin June 27, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    Wow, looks like you really made the right decision of enrolling your kiddo at that big school. And seems your parents too made the right decision to consider the school for you when you were just a kid. I love the clean as you go policy. Surely the kids would bring that kind of habit and discipline at home and even outside the school and house. Love the idea as well that there is no junked food and sweetened drinks. It’s the thing I hate at my boy’s school. Plus the no books to bring everyday is a real relief.

  • Reply Michi June 28, 2017 at 7:19 am

    My son always brings huge bag everyday. Paranoid ako nung una kasi second flr na siya this year, baka madrag siya pababa sa bigat ng trolley bag niya but he said, okay lang daw. I just told him na wag magmamadali sa pag-akyat at pagbaba ng stairs. Lockers are available for Grade 5 students pa yata pero I prefer naman na inuuwi lahat ng gamit para nachecheck ko. hehehe!

  • Reply Nerisa June 28, 2017 at 4:02 pm

    This is the first time I’ve heard about the Zero-waste policy. It sounds amazing and doable. Maisuggest nga yan sa PTA ng anak ko. haha

  • Reply Above Precious Rubies June 28, 2017 at 5:21 pm

    I think you made the right decision. Mukhang maganda nga ang school na ‘yan. The locker pa lang already got my attention + no junk food & zero-waste. Ang galing! We already have a school target for Nate as well in Tagum, hopefully, our plans are according to His.

  • Reply Janice June 28, 2017 at 11:45 pm

    DepEd is now stricter when it comes to monitoring the food that schools serve in their canteens these days. They have implemented strict guidelines on which types of food are allowed and which are not. There’s even a schedule to be followed on how often these types of food must be served. My girls, who are in high school, also reported to me that a lot of the food served in their canteen last year are now gone because they’re no longer allowed.

  • Reply Kim @ Mom On Duty July 7, 2017 at 5:56 pm

    I’m an Assumptionista too (first grade to fourth year high), but in Antipolo. I’m so happy to know that all Assumption schools maintain the same principles! My daughter now goes to Assumption Antipolo. I’m a bit sad it’s an all-girls so school. I would have loved my son to go there too. Sayang.

  • Reply May July 10, 2017 at 10:24 am

    Ah yes. Much as I’m into technology and if I put the kids to school, I’d go for progressive, I’m not sold out on using gadgets for school work and stuff. Seems like you’re happy with your decision. 🙂 Good on you!

  • Reply Mommy Anna July 18, 2017 at 10:30 am

    My original plan is to transfer my son in big school when he is in grade one but he is refused pa, but even we are in small school we are glad that gadgets is not allowed, no junk foods, mas less now ang books na dala :-). You made a right decision in choosing school for your boy

  • Reply Shalene R July 18, 2017 at 3:41 pm

    I love the ‘no heavy bags’ and ‘no junk food’ policies. It’s for the children’s physical growth benefits. My younger brother’s height abruptly stopped because he used to carry heavy backpacks when he was in high school. High school na yun ha! And I also commend schools who do not sell junk food to kids. Way to go! 🙂

  • Reply Arlene July 19, 2017 at 5:37 pm

    I love the new nutrition standards in schools these days. The idea that they increase access to healthy food and encourage our kids to make smart choices! My children are still too young but I’d love to enroll them to a schools that will work with me to make meals more nutritious, keep them hunger-free, and help them maintain or reach a healthy weight.

  • Reply Jem Alvarado (@esupermommy) July 20, 2017 at 9:56 am

    I like your son’s school! It is kid-friendly, eco-friendly, and less stress for kids. I actually like schools with less homework, no heavy bags, no junk foods, nature-friendly, and of course less students per class.

  • Reply Ruth July 20, 2017 at 8:05 pm

    Wow! Ang ganda naman dito! Gusto ko yung CLAYGO! Napakaganda ng sistema. If you don’t mind me asking, nasa Manila ba itong school na ito?

    • Reply Maan August 1, 2017 at 8:20 pm

      Sorry for the terribly late response! Davao ito 🙁

  • Reply School is Almost Over!!! February 18, 2018 at 10:04 pm

    […] for a long time. Instead, the students — and the parents — enjoyed the food stalls (bawal junk food!) and the program. There was even a magic show, which was […]

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