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Old 21.02.2008, 23:30
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Re: Advice is needed: how to get a child to YEar 2 of Swiss Kindergarten?

I also have a daughter starting kindergarten this year, and so also have friends whos children are 1 school year ahead.

My advice: let her start in "year 1", then about November/December you ask to have a talk to the Kindergarten teacher, about how she thinks your daughter is doing. If the teacher feels she could move into the next level. I know of 2 people who did this this year, and 2 the year before. It is not uncommon.

Remember that if she is to do her schooling in German, it would be a good idea that she can speak and "feel" the language. It will be an extra challenge for her to be learning say, math in a 2nd or 3rd language.
And, if she doesn't have any freinds at school, because she can't communicate with the other kids, it is not going to be easy for her.

I have heard of many people only doing 1 year of kindergarten, but none "skipping straight into" year 2.

If you plan on staying in Switzerland, during you daughters' school carreer, trust the system. AND make sure she learns both German and Swiss German - for her sanity and so that she has it easier at school.
Or pay for private schooling..

The thing isn't really to worry about "starting school at 7.5" - you can always have her do extra reading and writing classing from the many english schools around, if she is bored and needs extra stimulus... the thing to concentrate on, is to make sure she gets "A's", or be the best in her class when she is AT school - (an advantage being the eldest, and possibly the most mature) that she can get into the right secondary school, and be allowed to go to university - if that is your goal for her..

With regards to the Kindergärtnerin who doesn't want to talk to you... 7 of the 10 people i know whos kids are born in May, have the same thoughts. The Kindergärtnerin hears the same story every year, from at least 2 parents..

With regards to accessing your daughters full potential - remember that if she goes into a german speaking school, her potential is only as good as the german she can speak (!)

In saying all this, I also send my 4 year old daughter to reading and writing classes. She is doing well. In New Zealand, where I come from, school starts at 5. My daughter will also be 7 when she starts school here. i also make sure she mixes with lots of Swiss kids(!)

I will trust the system, where I have to (choose to?) use it, and try to support her, where I think she needs more.

Of course all our children are genii!! (us, i, o, um, o, is, orum, is, os, is) - who is going to correct me here?????
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