30 October 2005
In Palestine the children start school at the age of six. Before that it is very common to go to pre-school, better know to the West as kindergarten, but here it is really PRE-SCHOOL. Therefore most children are already used and familiar with the letters and the numbers when they start school.
My son's arabic was not that strong when we first arrived. He could understand some and speak very little. Starting an arabic school would of course not be easy. After looking at different alternatives we choosed a private school close to our house.
The first week was difficult. Really difficult. We were new in this country, and not familiar with their ways everything seemd strange and different. Most of all I missed "the fun" of starting school. The first weeks were just chaotic. The first grader's were scared and many of them cried and cried.
I remember clearly how I felt when I started school. I too was scared. My father would come with me and sit beside me in the classroom until I felt comfortable, so that's what I did for my son. I stayed beside him. After some days he was ok. He was really so very brave and I admire any six year old who can manage a new enviorment, new language, new people and classmates in the way that he did. Of course we would meet many difficulties by time but at this point I at least got him to go to school.