Every new school year is greeted with much excitement. Sure, there is usually some nervousness and anxiety, especially for the newly enrolled children. However, for most of us, it is a largely positive experience because of the care and warmth that the children experience. Beyond the usual hype, this year’s Back to School at Presbyterian Preschool Services marked an even more unique beginning.
New Year, New Beginnings at Little Olive Tree
On 3 January 2023, the Little Olive Tree Preschools in Bukit Arang and Woodlands were launched! For most of 2022, many have worked behind the scenes for the kindergartens to be converted to childcare centres called Little Olive Tree Preschools by PPS.
A very warm welcome at our newly opened LOT Centres
Little Olive Tree at Bukit Arang started the school year with an orientation, where parents were invited to join their children on the first day of school! The Centre Leaders and teachers planned a series of activities that children could do with their parents. This gave parents the opportunity to see the learning spaces their children will be in for the rest of the year, inviting them into their children’s world.
There were also engagement sessions between the Centre Leader and the parents, which helped parents understand what the school year might look like ahead of all the transformation that had taken place. It was also a heartening sight for Ms Susan, the previous principal at Bukit Arang Kindergarten, to be with the children to help them transition as well.
Over at LOT Woodlands, amidst the chaos of the first day of school, the parents and guardians were also invited into the Centre to familiarise themselves with the space and get acquainted with activities the children would do at school. The teachers sang with the children, played games with them and got them oriented to their new classrooms and learning environments. The Centre Leader and teachers also spent some time engaging the parents and guardians, to assuage them of any anxieties that usually accompany the first day of school. Like our Presbyterian Preschools, the LOT centres exist to tell the story of God’s truth, beauty and goodness, and are a fruit of the labour by our co-labourers: Bukit Arang Church, Woodlands Evangelical Church and Truth Baptist Church. It is our hope that these children will be olive trees flourishing in the house of God, trusting always in His unfailing love.
What a joy it is to see God’s family expand!
New Year, Same Family
There was also much excitement at the Presbyterian Preschools as well! There was much conversation, songs and games for the children to kickstart their school year.
Our children at Yishun Centre enjoying themselves on the first day of school!
Other than planning fun and engaging activities to orient children who are new to attending school, teachers also took special care to help returning children transit from one class to another. Teachers designed craft activities for them to learn to regulate their emotions and to hear from one another how they are feeling about the new school year.
Back to usual programming at Woodlands Centre
Back to School is always an important annual milestone for the children. It is a period of transition which demands social emotional agility in our little ones. Beyond preparing them for what they need to learn in the next season of their preschool years, it is equally, if not more important, to aid their emotional growth. We look forward to a year of cultivating their learning dispositions such as grit, grease and grace.
If you’d like to partner with us in blessing our little ones, you may do so here: www.bit.ly/LilBlessings