Wednesday, August 10, 2016

When in School in the island of Curacao!

It's the first time that our girl went to school, a real school. Living on our sailboat full-time, we have the privilege to spend 24/7 with her. Even she is three and half years old, we already started home school. By her age now, she knows all the colors in Thai, Portuguese and English, the same for the numbers from one to twenty. She paints everyday, that's what she loves to do the most and it doesn't matter color pencils, water colors or even acrylic paint. When I cook, she learned how to break the eggs and also peel boiled eggs and garlic very well. If her father arranges all his working tools or fix something, she knows the name of each tool better than me and always give a hand to help him. Everyday, in the end of the day when we arrive in the boat and is time to hoist the dinghy, she will remove her life-vest and go straight to the mast to help release the cable that is use to pull the dinghy out of the water. That cable will be tensioned and tied on the mast but she knows exactly how to untie the cleat knot in order to make it loose to descend to the water level. We often meet boats with kids and baby or locals kids whenever we stop and our girl has the chance to play and socialize with all ages. However, most of our friends and family wonder if she won't go to school. We always have the same answer that we do her home school but it's hard for them to understand the concept. So, when we drop our anchor in Curacao for three months, the maximum allowed for our visas, we thought that it will be a good opportunity for her to experience a real school.
 
We decided based on the fact that we also consider that is important for her to play and socialize with another kids and to know how it will be her life without us for a moment. So she can learn how to protect herself without the parent's shield. We chose her school base on the location, price and activities. Finally, we chose the "BoobaLooh" kindergarten after visited a few schools. Advised by our local Dutch friend, we met Ms. Rosa Granville, one of the teachers and the owner of this interesting kindergarten. She mentioned that BoobaLooh emphasizes outdoor activities which our girl loves. The school is located near the Spanish Waters anchorage, just 30 minutes walking and less than five minutes by bus. To be more precise for the ones who may want to visit with their children, is located right next to the moving company on Caracasbaaiweg and near the sign of the company Wanna Bike on the way going to Willemstad.
Maria Dee with Ms. Rosa Granville
The first time we visited the place, our girl said she likes this school because there are many animals such as parrots, eagle, turtles, goats, chickens and many more. We don't want to push her too much for the first time at school, she only attended the morning session and three times a week. The school serve two light meals made of bread and fruits. They follow the Dutch system, all teachers including Rosa, graduated from the Netherlands. Even they teach in Dutch and Papiamentu which are the official languages in Curacao, all the teachers can speak good English. We informed the teachers that was no need to worry with our girl about the languages because it's good for her to learn in different environments and we teach her at home what they teach in the school also. From time to time our girl came back from school and tell us that she talked to a friend in school but the friend didn't reply and she doesn't know why! Since the period we are in Curacao is the summer holidays for the official schools, some of the activities are outside. They went to the Sea Aquarium in Mambo beach and the school support the entrance fee for all the kids. They had a pool day where all kids enjoyed water and had fun. Each month BoobaLooh has a new theme like holidays, traveling and they will paint a ice cream picture or luggage. The monthly fees are charged base on the amount of days the children attend each week from 7am to 1pm.

100 fl. for one day a week
175 fl. for two days a week
240 fl. for three days a week
300 fl. for four days a week
350 fl. for five days a week

Plus, 100 fl. for her own study materials which only pay one time once you enroll the school but Rosa was kind enough to waive it because our girl will be there only one and half month.

** Prices are base on the local currency, Guilder (fl.), 1 Euro is equivalent to 2 Guilders.**

Comparing the prices with the private kindergartens in Portugal or Thailand, we consider that it's expensive. But since the food here are cheaper than in another islands in the Caribbean we compensate and sacrifice some other things to our daughter's school.
Animal's cages
Big playground with lots of slides

Outdoor activity at school

Outing in Sea Aquarium

Learning and playing
 
 

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