I am sane (at least most of the time). I know enough to go to bed early because you never know when those kids might get up. I know that come 6:30 this house will already be littered with toys and the day will be in full swing. I know this and still I have been awake since a little before three.
All I really wanted was to stumble my way to the bathroom and then slide back into my warm bed and sleep until one of the kids woke me up. Unfortunately, the bathroom led to a sip of water at the dining room table scattered with brochures and print outs from the Internet. I brushed by the table and managed to knock off a little of the mess and as I straightened the pages one word caught my eye- yochien.
That is the Japanese word for pre-schools or kindergartens. Usually for children from the ages of three to five, they are not compulsory but lots of parents send their children.
As you know, Bailey (and sometimes Sophie) attends a day care. They do lots of fun things like sing songs, read books, do crafts and put on little performances for the local nursing home. Day care is the place that we thought Bailey would be until he started elementary school. Turns out, we were wrong......
Last weekend, Hubs older sister said that she had something she wanted to talk about with us. I figured it was something about English since he husband works with a foreigner with limited Japanese ability. Turns out she had heard some bad things about the day care. What concerned her most was the fact that the kids are mostly left to there own devices and that adult supervision is kinda lacking. She is worried that it may not be the best environment for Bailey.
I know she is right.
Bailey, like lots of little boys, has lots and lots of energy. The only problem is, if left to his own devices he doesn't know what to do with that energy and becomes a little overzealous and acts out in ways that he shouldn't. It is the same case for other little boys in the class.
One little boy, in particular is a biter.
I do not know the whole story and I am not there to see how it all plays out, but Bailey gets bitten by this kid at least once a week. At least once a week. Bites that leave bruises and marks all over his little body. His left ear was black and blue for the first half of February.
Again, I don't know what leads up to the biting, but I do know that it makes Bailey stressed and scared to go to day care.
I have watched Bailey closely this week and I have realized that if the Biter is not in daycare that day, Bailey is so much more relaxed and easy going when I pick him up. He listens better and there are less temper tantrums.
I know that this kind of scenario could happen anywhere, but I have experienced first hand the lack of supervision at this particular day care. Once a week, I teach English there. The little ones (Sophie and another little boy) are usually put into high chairs, given no toys and just expected to sit there. They could be crying their heads off and the teachers wouldn't even stop to give them a toy or a reassuring word. Heart crushing.
And then, yesterday, when I came to pick the kids up Sophie was sitting by the gate howling and no teacher thought to pick her up or to try to help her.
I started this post as I way to sort out my feelings and it has become clear to me that it is time to move on. Time to find a better place for Bailey and Sophie. Time to find peace of mind and less stress for all of us. Time for change.