Guus Bosman

software engineering director

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Nora's pre-school

Hippo House

AMH Halloween party

The day of Halloween itself is always full with activities, and often a bit stressful for the kids and parents alike. So we've learned over the years to spread out the activities as much as possible. The AMH party is a wonderful low-key event to don costumes and hang out with other parents, and for the kids there are other kids, juice and cookies. We had a lovely morning.

Nora's witch costume worked really well -- after some tears over whether or not to wear a sweater underneath -- and the boys were terrific in their firemen outfits.

One of the kids at school had an inflatable dinosaur costume, that scared Adrian a bit and he kept his distance. When Sasha asked Adrian what he liked afterwards, he said "xраната" (food) and, surprisingly, "диносавр" (the dinosaur).

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Leo and Adrian first day of pre-K

Leo and Adrian went to pre-K for the first time today. Their first visit was 1 hour long, from 9.30 am to 10.30 am. We brought them, hand in hand.

We had told them in the morning (which was a hectic morning since Nora has a cold), and they reacted quite well.

When it was time to put their boots on, Adrian said goodbye to his toys: "Dag, ik ga naar school, ik ga leren lezen".

Leo, while talking, had some doubt. "Papa ik ben nog niet helemaal groot". I agreed but explained that there were kids at school that needed Leo's help. That worked, and he said he was going to teach them how to "een ei met de schil snijden".

The drop-off involved some tears from both of them but was quick and efficient.

An hour later we picked them up. Adrian: "het was heel leuk op school!" "Er was ook een helper en die vroeg iets maar dat wist ik niet" (he couldn't understand her). When we were outside, a girl looked out of the window of Adrian's class and waived at him. He waived back.

Leo had a more difficult time. Jean explained that he had cried for quite a bit, but afterwards calmed down so we gave him some more time and picked him up a little later.

Later Adrian shared that he had made a tower ("welke kleur? blauw!" -- de toren is roze haha). He also said: "Juf Leslie zegt dat ik nooit met de boerderij mag spelen!" -- de boerderij is aantrekkelijk maar wordt gebruikt om te leren lezen.

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A look in the school

We went for a walk on Saturday and to get the boys acquainted with the school we walk to AMH. Jean was working there and she offered us to take a peak inside which was great. Another chance for the boys to see their classrooms, which will help them get used to everything.

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Three years at school

Nora's teacher, Ms Leslie, shared a wonderful collection of photo's of Nora from the past three years. It was so nice to see her working on all these projects.

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A fallen tree

Last Friday there was a big storm and the big tree at Nora's school fell over. Kind of sad, it was big beautiful tree.

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Visiting Nora's school

We visited Nora's school today, and Nora showed us her work. This is the third and last time we're attending this event with Nora, a bittersweet thought.

She showed us the English words she can read (all the colors, several other short words) and her exercises with multiplication.

No hot chocolate this year.

Hippo House

Visiting Nora's school

Today was a 'bring your parent to school day' at Nora's school and we happily took this opportunity. Ginny came over to take care of the boys and Sasha, Nora and I walked to school.

It was great to be in her classroom again. Everything is so small there -- the chairs, the sinks, everything.

For several weeks Nora has been telling us about the hot chocolate she made at school, so that was the very first thing she showed us. It was pretty cool to see how she was dealing with boiling water (she was wearing mittens) and carefully preparing the drink.

Then she did a exercise with beads and counting, in bars of nine which was interesting. Then an exercise with shapes and finally she showed us a little bit of the reading she can do. She read a sentence "I dust a box" and all of a sudden she disappeared -- until we saw her, actually dusting a box.

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Back to school

Nora went back to school today. She was very happy to go back: "papa ik ben zo blij dat ik weer naar school ga!"

On the way to school we practiced a little bit how to talk about her summer -- she wasn't quite confident about her English after such a long summer, it seems.

I choked up for a few moments -- time goes by so fast -- but it's wonderful she's growing and doing so well.

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Nora's first school year

Yesterday was Nora's last day of school. Sasha and I brought her in the morning.

The Arlington Montessori House has been amazing and we all have had a great year. Nora has learned a lot, and now speaks English quite well. The other parents are great, it's really fun to hang out with them.

Hippo House

Cold trip to school

This week we've managed to walk to school every morning so far. When we run late I'll take Nora on the bicycle. She likes that, and it's fast, but I enjoy the walk to school and chatting with her. She is so cheerful. The other day I pointed to a bird and said:

"Kijk Nora, dat is een roodborstje. Mooie vogel he?"
"Ik vind alle vogels mooi! Ik vind alles mooi!"

It's been very cold this week -- frost alerts at night -- so we had gloves and shawls. Nora has a nice green hat, and when I looked next to me I saw she had pulled it all the way over her face -- she can see through the little holes and it keeps her face warm, haha.