Sun, 11 May 2003

Preschools and Kindergartens

A Guide to English Speaking Preschool and Kindergartens in the Greater Jakarta Area By Tono Setiadarma and Joel Thomas Laing Jakarta Books, 2003 319pp

The writers of this book claim it is the answer for young parents in picking the right school for their children amid the increasing number of preschools and kindergartens in Greater Jakarta.

Young parents most likely have knocked on every school door, pounded the pavement and asked critical questions of teachers, administrators, principals and other parents as well.

More parents have come to understanding that education in a child's early years is important for further development in a child's growth.

Choosing the right preschool or kindergarten is definitely a hard decision for parents to make, particularly since a child's personality starts to develop early, while attitude, ideas and interests begin to emerge.

Good preschools and kindergartens help children reach their full potential. It is the parents' obligation to provide the best education that will help a child to achieve its peak.

The headaches, of course, range from uncertainty about tuition, distance from home and various theories of how children should be educated.

So what qualities in a preschool or a kindergarten should be sought?

More informative than the yellow pages, this Guide to English- speaking Preschools and Kindergartens supplies readers with more than just the schools' contact numbers and addresses. At least 27 preschools and kindergartens are thoroughly reviewed and commented on in this book.

Principals, students (one could imagine how cute some children would be when asked to comment on their schools!) and parents are also interviewed.

The Guide places English-speaking schools for preschoolers and kindergartners in Jakarta into three categories: International schools, national-plus schools and independent schools that either originated in Jakarta or are franchises from other countries.

More? There are also reviews on nonacademic programs intended for toddlers, preschoolers and kindergartners, as well as an extracurricular program intended to supplement a child's education while in school.

Though not all preschools and kindergartens in Jakarta are included in this book, it could serve as a guideline for parents.

According to both writers the main reason they wrote the book was to help children who don't speak English as a first language make the most of life's discoveries in their second language.

-- Emmy Fitri