Live Play School masquerading as child care-play-music

With only a few months to go, we figured it was about time to check out the child development options around here. Montessori is well known though the implementations can be inconsistent and there isn’t one really close by. So we checked out a local place that is supposedly part of an international conglomerate with 600 or so centres.

I was a little disappointed. Turns out they’re charging ¥240 ($42) per 45 minute class… and you still have to be there. The walls are pretty colours and the leaders are very animated, though the children didn’t seem at all engaged. And I can’t quite call the staff ‘teachers’ since they’re mostly just English majors who did a 2-month in-house course.

Yet what are the options?

The sales guy suggested that Shanghainese parents don’t know how to play with their kids so they bring them there instead. Ouch!

Maybe I had an enlightened childhood but it just looked like the kids were on the set of a second-rate version of the television show, Play School.

Maybe we’ll be looking elsewhere for a place that has a stronger pedagogical foundation than “let the kids play and they’ll learn something”.

Still, what is important in child development?