Friday, September 14, 2018

First Day {& Week} of School

Our sweet girl started 3 años this past Monday.  It was a big deal for all of us since this meant our Serafina was starting Spanish public school (like starting elementary school in the states).  I have written about Spanish school in the past here and also about the registration process here.  Just a quick reminder though, Spanish kiddos start public school at age three (or the year they turn three) -- this means going to elementary school with all the big kids!  The younger kids are kept separate from the older kids (different areas of the building, their own playground, etc.).  But still, a big transition for everyone.
School started on Monday, but it turns out there was a meeting for the parents the week before... and I didn't know about it.  There is definitely no such thing as a phone tree or email chain here or letters being mailed home, however there was a notice at the school (and I am sure word spread among the parents who know each other).  But not knowing that I needed to check the school for notices, I missed the meeting.  Lucky for me the parents in Serafina's class are amazing and have been so kind and helpful.  Just like in our guardería, there is a WhatsApp (text message) group of all the parents -- this is how things are communicated to the families.  There is one (sometimes two) delegada for the class; this is the class parent and they are the ones that talk with the teacher and then send the information to the parents.  And everything is done over the group chat, so sometimes there are hundreds of messages that come through in a short amount of time, gets just a tad overwhelming trying to translate everything.  But I have had a few parents reach out to me and ask if we need help with anything -- only one speaks a little English but they are so patient and kind and understanding of my beginner Spanish.  Our sweet girl is the only American in her class (and about one of five in the whole school) so all of us will be learning more Spanish this year!

So, through the group chat I learned of the el horario de adaptación -- or the adaption schedule.  This is common for all incoming 3 años classes, no matter the school.  For Serafina's school this was her el horario de adaptación -- everyone (including parents, went on Monday for two hours), the class was split in half for Tuesday and Wednesday with some coming in the morning and some in the afternoon, everyone together for Thursday and Friday for a few hours each day... then full, regular days starting the following week.
Off we all went on Monday, along with the whole school as everyone only had two hours that day -- and well, it was just a tad crazy.  We found Serafina's classroom and had to cram 25 kids, plus their parents into a very small classroom on a hot afternoon.  Our poor sweet girl was so overwhelmed with all the kids and people and wanted absolutely none of it (she wasn't the only one).  So it was a rough two hours and not a great start to the school year, that was for sure....

But Tuesday went better -- she walked right into her classroom and did really well.  Wednesday she was little timid at the start but did great for the slightly longer time.  Thursday was great too, she didn't want to go but had so much fun and wouldn't stop talking when I picked her up -- telling me all about her day!  Friday we started at the regular time so it was a little crazy with all the people/kids but she had another great day.

Overall it was a good week and we are so beyond proud of our sweet girl.  We can't wait to experience more of what Spanish public school has to offer and will be forever grateful that we have this opportunity while we are living here.

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