How Many Enrichment Class Is Enough?

Currently Yvette has two enrichment classes in her schedule. Music Class on Sat and Chinese Class on Sun Morning. The travelling distance to go for both classes is less than 15 mins (Oh boy, confession now! We take cab to music class most of the time!)

Travelling time to classes is one of the factor to consider for me. I don’t wish Yvette or ourselves to travel all the way, it is waste of time and can be really tiring.

Learning to play music leads to lifelong enjoyment. It could be a career, it could be a past time, it could be a stress reliever. It makes great family time. We do picture she play music for the family in the future. We feel music is a good indicator of the resilience of children and their ability to “stick with it”. Music instill positive attitudes, a positive self-image, a desire to achieve excellence, an ability to set goals, cooperation, and group cohesiveness. And build her patience too. We hope she can benefit from learning music.

Yvette was weak in Chinese and her interest is not strong in Chinese when she was much younger. Sending her to accompanied class giving me more chance to culture her interest and set her foundation right.

So is two classes enough?

I got a phone interview from one magazine recently and share my thought over how many enrichment class to send is enough for preschooler in my perspective.

For us, two is enough as of now.

Having a full time job. Sending Yvette to full day care. We already not spending as much time together as family. On average, we spend only 4-5 hours together per weekday. (eg. from 6.30pm to 10.30pm)

We don’t want over schedule. We want Yvette to be active and have time for outdoor play. We want to spend more time with her. We want to read to her and homeschool her.

We try to teach as much as we could. However I know I have limitation. My English language is not a good as D. In the pipeline, I’ve been contemplating to send Yvette to English Class – not sure what type of class to send as of now. But we decided to hold the horse first. By accessing her progress in reading and phonics, we quite sure she doesn’t need one till P1. (As least I can still teach and hopefully by then D has the time to teach too.)

Swimming is a sport Yvette took up since she was a baby. I have dropped this extra curriculum since the timing is crashed with her Chinese class and travelling to Turf City took us 25 mins by taxi and 45 mins by shutter bus. As such, I have to give this class a miss. I do wish she will take up a sport again. It can be swimming it can be other sport.

P1010524

Lastly, Art.

Art opens up creativity. But I can’t say Yvette is lack of it. She does see things in different perspective. The Hare and The Tortoise is one of her favorite story. After reading them again and again, she told us. “Without the tree, the hare will win!” A very different perspective that I have never thought before.

I have no plan to sign Yvette up for any new class now but the above three are something we will like Yvette to take on.

How many enrichment class is enough for one preschooler is really subjective. It is always up to each family and the preschooler to cope with these extra classes. As long as the preschooler enjoys the lesson and the pocket is deep enough, why not to have more?

For us, we prefer less…

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32 thoughts on “How Many Enrichment Class Is Enough?

  1. hi,

    you are right, enrichment classes really eat into family time, can you share how you fit in time spent with extended family?

    for us, though my kids are not taking any enrichment classes, just fitting in dinner once a week at each grandparents place, and church on sundays, already take up the whole weekend!

    • Same as Mievee, I stay with FIL so this part I dont need to work it. For D’s siblings, they do come visit FIL occaisionally. And they (elder BIL & 2nd SIL)stay nearby. We often meet up our second in law (D’s 2nd sister)’s family for dinner. We are not close to elder SIL and second extended SIL(D’s second brother wife). But elder SIL will meet up occasionally during home affairs function. Where else for 2nd extended SIL, we only meet once or twice per year. One reason being D’s 2nd brother had passed on.

      As for my side, I go to my mum’s place every sun. From there Yvette will bond with my parents and as well talk to my brother and SIL. My sister meet up with us quite often and she will be there on Sun too.

  2. They are so young at this age. How to do so many things? We would be exhausted! We only have two 30min classes for JR right now – violin & piano. And it’s nearby. We don’t expect to add to that.

  3. One of my reasons to homeschool through to Kindergarten: spend lots of time teaching and playing with the kids myself. Then go for the enrichment classes that they enjoy.

    For now, our plan is to homeschool, plus 1 right brain education class (1hr/week, accompanied), 1 music class (45min/week, accompanied) and 1 swimming class (1hr/week). That’s only 3 hours of lessons out of home every week. The rest of time is family bonding.

    As for time with extended family, I live with in-laws and BIL’s family is next door, so we get to meet most weekdays. We’re in KL while my parents are in Singapore, so only get to chat with them via Skype about 1 hour a week. Most of the time during weekends, we spend time as a nuclear family.

    Time management is indeed every mum’s concern! 🙂

  4. Believe it or not sonshine doesn’t attend any classes (for now at least). Reason? We hate to trade our family time for hectic class schedules. No not even for one class. We enjoy being able to wake up at our own time & spontaneously do the things we want to do rather than planning around classes. We must be the rare lazy parents in spore or rather our poor boy must be the only 4 yr old who hasn’t attended any enrichment classes!: :p

  5. for Lucas, currently he is only has 1-music class. we already feel that very tired..bc i have to bring a long 1 yo daughter together..clash with meimei nap time..we will stick to one at this moment, next year April, he will attend Eng creative class. agree with Karmeleon, they are too young..i will let him attend those class that i cant teach, like music, swimming or soccer.at this stage, one or two is max for us. as for chinese, at this moment, he doesnt nid it..he pick up Ch faster and better that Eng (may be he speak alot Ch at home, and i wont let him mix Ch n Eng)

    as for swimming, i will let him to learn when he is k2 or k1

    soccer- his favourite- will sign him up at the nearest field, so that can save travelling time..

  6. Ha… Probably I made up that term to describe my hubby, can’t rem when started using it. Still love Singapore’s convenient public transport.

    And I definitely like waking up at our own time, and no morning rush to send the kid to school. Especially during pregnancy, I can sleep in till nearly 11a.m. at times. Our classes are in the afternoons and within 15 min of home too. No fun trying to beat KL traffic jams.

  7. In Malaysia, only 6 years of primary school education is compulsory. Even then, can apply for exemption to homeschool. Many families actually don’t bother and simply homeschool. Ha!

    As for secondary school, can sign up for a good online High School Diploma programme. Then complete the Diploma at own pace. An e.g. is EPGY by Stanford. After that, take SAT exam and then enter University.

    You may read this sharing by a Singaporean mummy (From PSLE to University in 2 to 3 years): http://www.kiasuparents.com/kiasu/content/psle-university

    Some people choose to take GCE O Levels or I.B. exams as a private candidate.

  8. For me, I sent my kids to classes when Im not at home, meaning during weekdays. They attend only 3hrs class and the rest of the time at home is idling with maid.. So I arranged my maid to bring them for those additional classes.. Anyways, its not much oso.. Chinese class is a must cos Im lousy at that.. Then the next is Gym, that’s all..

    I would prefer to keep weekends for family time.. As you said, we are already not spending enough time with our kids so weekends is a play day not enrichment day.. (ps: so happens that vel’s gym needs twice a week so one day falls on sat morning).

    I noe of some mummies bz sending their kids for classes during weekends, rushing classes back to back.. I dont support that.

    • Yes.. Not trading family time with Enrichment class is the right to go in this moder soceity. Don’t you realise, I think I feel it, now ppl are getting more and more unkind, immortal because they study too much? Think i think too much!

  9. Pingback: Yvette: 3 yrs. 8 Mths (44 Mths) | Once In A LifeTime

  10. Hi Sunflower,

    My gal is 2.5 yrs old now. She loves music & art. Intend to send her for music class but not sure which sch is suitable. Can advise?

    • Hi thanks for leaving me a comment.

      As I only send Yvette to Mac Music School, I cant provide more objective suggestion for other school. It falls to what type of enrichment you really want for your girl. However, I do find that Mac Music school is a little more in detail imam teaching my child theory than playing the piano.

      I am considering a switch after she complete the beginner lesson but yet to find a replacement yet.

      Go for trial class to have more ideas and see how your girl react toward the lesson.

  11. My friend highly recommends Harmony Road Music Course from the U.S. Her daughter is 6 years old, learnt for about 1.5 years and is at Grade 4 level! The curriculum is very solid, with proven track record. Of course, she’s also diligent in developing perfect pitch, sight reading and practising.

    It’s important that the music class teaches solfege singing and the instructor is good. Try googling “Harmony Road Singapore”. (We’re based in KL, so will be joining Harmony Road over here.)

    Btw, I’ve no background in music, yet my boy loves music, so will be learning with him.

  12. Yes, seems similar, but this friend has tried and compared both and concluded that Harmony Road curriculum is much better. Can’t rem why she said so, cos i know nuts about music. Yet she’s someone whose judgment regarding education that I trust.

    My boy loves singing and making up tunes. Attended Kindermusik since Jan this year. We’ve no instrument at home. Have brought him for trial class, he likes the the piano cos he enjoys pressing stuff.

    Harmony Road course covers piano. The principal told us that even for violin-player-wannabe, should also start with Harmony Road first, to build foundation for ear training. Her students have excellent track record, so I’m quite impressed. Example of her 5-year old first prize-winning performance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PBetr6PG-Q

    Daddy isn’t keen on buying piano yet. If anyone has lobang for a second-hand keyboard, please share, thank you! 🙂

  13. Hahaha, that’s you? I thought the same regarding his posture, seems like the reason is he refused the support? Another young girl used the support and looked fine. Anyway, I’ve no idea whether he’s really good and have no idea how I’m going to help my boy with practice in future. He has to rely on himself if he’s THAT interested.

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