Tag Archives: school

P1 Checklist

As Z would be heading off to Primary School soon, I took note of these tips when I saw them on a forum and advice from friends. Seeing how overwhelming the tips were and how much information overload could occur, we broke down the steps for Z and ourselves.

In splitting up the activities into 5 distinct steps, I hoped to reduce the stress for Z on the first day of school and at the same time, ensured that the basics were covered.


Part 1: Pre-administration day – Mid Oct

  1. Purchased School uniforms
    1. Shirt – size 12
    2. Shorts – size 24
    3. PE Tee – pre-order size 13
    4. PE Shorts – size 22
    5. Pre-order name badge
  2. Purchased School shoes
    1. Size 13 & 13.5
    2. Practice shoelace tying

Part 2: Administration Day – end Oct

  1. Dental consent form
  2. Particulars form
  3. Giro for monthly payment
  4. Book list, Bus services form & student care form

Part 3: Orientation Day – Early Nov

  1. Making friends
    1. Self-introduction
    2. Namecards
    3. Tokens
  2. Touring the Canteen & Bookshop
    1. Buy books (or order online)
    2. Check on school’s recess procedure (Buddy up with a P5 for 2 weeks)
    3. Buy School tie
  3. Tour school facilities
    1. Toilets
    2. Assembly area
    3. Classroom

Part 4: Before school starts

  1. Packing schoolbag
    1. Based on handbook
  2. Checking the School Diary
  3. Going through the MOE activity book
  4. Laying out school attire & socks
  5. Labelling of items
  6. Preparing a telephone card with several contacts for his wallet, file and bag
  7. Establishing the pocket money procedure
  8. Organizing a playdate with new classmates* if we have the contacts

Part 5: First day of school

  1. Making Friends
  2. Buying food
    1. Counting Money
    2. Type of wallet
    3. Speed of eating


  1. Uniforms
    1. 2 sets of uniforms
    2. 3 sets of PE attire
    3. 2 pairs of school socks with school emblem
    4. Embroidered name badge x 8 (to be sewn onto shirts & tees)
    5. 1 school tie (to buy from school)
    6. 2 pairs of school shoes
  2. Book list
  3. Essentials
    1. Schoolbag (to buy after book list)
    2. Water bottle with strap
    3. Wallet strap to attach to existing wallet
    4. Watch (remind him never to remove)
    5. New keychain (buy from Japan)
  4. Key stationeries
    1. Big pencil case
    2. Colour pencils
    3. Clear folders
    4. Multi-pocket file
    5. Plastic wrap for books
    6. Small Notebook
  5. Labels
    1. Iron-on dots for uniforms (existing stocks)
    2. Big sticker labels with contact information
    3. Medium sticker labels (existing stocks)
    4. Small sticker labels
    5. Shoe stickers
    6. Blank labels for files
    7. Name rubber stamp
    8. Fabric marker (recommended but I didn’t like how it would look, this would be my last option)

*Name stamp & simple stickers were ordered from Qoo10 seller (Luv Simplicity) at $11 and $2.90 for 50 large stickers respectively.

**Premium labels & Clothing stickers were ordered from MuaKids & utilized balance stocks from Stuck On You respectively. 

P1 logistics’ prep weekend

We decided to pick up Z’s school uniform before the orientation. X and I cooked fried rice before Z came home from soccer. With the unpredictable hazy weather, we had not been able to send him for class weekly.

My little helper
After lunch, we went to buy the uniforms. It was $9 for shirt, $10 for a pair of shorts, $7 for PE Tshirt and $7 for a pair of PE shorts. We also had to order his name badge.

X waited patiently and pensively while Z tried his sizes

After the uniform buying trip, we took both boys to Ice Cream Chef at Thomson road.

Featuring Kenyan Roast, Honey Green tea, peach and chocolate Hershey’s

It was such a hot day but the boys insisted on going to the playground outside Ice Cream Chef.

We wrapped up the day with sending Z to his art class and shopping at City Square.

On the hazy Sunday, we played tennis and hanged out at Westgate.

Featuring my bolster coolies

Funny 3D art  

X had a penchant for hats

Z loved his soghurt

So did X…

We popped over to the Royal Sporting House opposite Soghurt and got Z new school shoes.

I believed the shoes would only be this white BEFORE he entered school.

Promotion in store

With more shopping at Isetan, we headed home for an evening nap. I never knew shopping could be so tiring. On hindsight, it was a good thing we did not sign up for Z’s swimming this term. The haze turned horrid that afternoon and hit 180.

We had dinner at a nearby mall and were pleasantly surprised with the $2 Zoo Moove rides. My kids loved this, so did I actually!

 We also chanced upon this Retro Party “mini carnival” at the mall.

We played Donkey/Old Maid with the kids, alongside with the free Muah Chee given at the event.


X’s first plant        

X had a life-sized poster in school. An incredibly cool idea which the teachers had developed to teach them about themselves. When I asked “Where is X?”, X ran to his portrait and pointed eagerly to me. When asked for a photo, he posed ever so gingerly.

He learned about plants and here was his very first bean sprouts. It brought back my own recollection of having my first bean sprouts in primary school.

He was so proud of his work!

My dear X, we were proud of you too.

When my toddler wanted to become a big boy so badly, he carried his own bag, no matter how heavy and bulky it was.

You know, mummy’s advice to you would be – Please slow down, don’t grow up so fast, stay the way you are and it’s always perfect in my eyes.

X’s PTM (end 2014)

We had X’s PTM some time ago.

He was considered relatively new to the class as he had only spent 4 months in playgroup.

He was known to be a good eater when he was not cranky. He had been in a rather bad mood of late and we could hardly blame him. He was teething and had loose stools which even caused a diaper rash. His teachers were very understanding on that.

He was very sociable and played with al his friends. His class size had grown to 7 persons. He was a good playmate and would not hit another child even if they had bullied him. However, he would run to the teachers and pointed the culprit out to them. The teachers liked the fact that he did not take matters into his own hands and start a fight. I reckoned our consistent reminders at home worked.

Z & X had been trained from the start that they should not use fists to settle any disputes . The former should empathize the latter’s weakness while the latter should respect the former’s “seniority”.

When X misbehaved in school, he would give his teachers a cheeky, knowing and sweet smile. With that, he would usually get out of trouble.

X had also continued to exhibit interest in music and dance. During his free time, he would actually pick out a book and flip the pages. That was so different from Z.

I should be interested in some form of music classes for X, something fun and rhythmic as opposed to formal music training. Any suggestions?

Teachers in Singapore

As per how some parents have allowed their children to undermine their authority, the spillover effect on teachers was far worse.

Teachers in Singapore had a tough job to do, tall orders to meet and large shoes to fill. At the same time, some of them might not have the experience or the authority to cope with demanding management or persistent parents.

While I really wished MOE could produce better teachers of higher moral fiber and impart creativity (and a million other skillsets), in the short term, that would really be a wish list and I would, inevitably, contribute part of the tall orders. I used to aspire to be a teacher but a relief teaching stint showed me that teaching was a lot more administrative than it was. This reminded me of a module I took on organizational behavior where the organizations must recognize the talents of their staff and acknowledge that some people prefer the technical aspects than the administrative aspects of a job.

You would not tell an engineer to spend his days doing curricular activities, or a researcher to double up as a counsellor, so why did we assume that teachers were able to multi-task, take on so many hats and still be able to teach well?

The world got bigger but had our teachers been trained beyond their myopic views? Their experience would pale in comparison to many working parents out there. Did the teachers have the time to develop themselves? Or had their management moved beyond the traditional brick-and-mortar framework yet? I would not know how fast teaching had evolved but the parents had definitely changed .

My mom would never challenge my teachers if they gave negative feedback about me. However, I believed I would ponder, might even possibly challenge, if I felt that the teachers were too inexperienced. The dynamics had changed. The tide had turned.

Despite so, what I thought everyone could do was to be more forgiving towards teachers, to be kinder to them, to respect them and to let them assume the authority they ought to have. If they could not discipline our children with moderation, what of our children’s future of they knew rules could be bent and broken?

The teachers had their own families, required their own set of worklife balance and I believed most of them had the sincere, honorable intentions of moulding our children for the future.

Let us focus on respecting the teachers and give them the due authority they should, before jumping either sides blindly. Teachers needed to be motivated and incentivized to become better teachers to guide our children well too.