FAQs – Pre-Schools
Freqently Asked Questions
There are 12 EtonHouse schools in Singapore that welcome pre-schoolers who are between 18 months to 6 years of age. They are conveniently located in East Coast, Bukit Timah, Central and Sentosa. Click here here to find an EtonHouse school near you.
Our pre-school children can continue their further education in the 4 EtonHouse International School campuses in Orchard (K12), Thomson, Sentosa and Broadrick (Pre-school, Primary, Secondary).
Each centre has its own unique identity that responds to the immediate context and community within which the school/pre-school is embedded. All EtonHouse centres however follow the same educational philosophy of inquiry based education.
To ensure consistency in terms of standards of practice we have established:
- Adherence to relevant government legislation e.g. ECDA/MOE standards and policies
- EtonHouse Policy statements on a wide range of health and safety issues; curriculum and communication (Each policy statement establishes a consistent set of practices and procedures to be followed in each setting). These policy statements acknowledge and establish a higher standard than legislation
- Ongoing pedagogical support to our pre-schools in terms of practice and professional development which supports curriculum development and quality educational services
EtonHouse International pre-school and schools follow the international school calendar that begins in August and ends in June, with school closure during the term breaks. School finishes at 3pm.
On the other hand, our “Singapore” pre-schools follow the Singapore MOE academic calendar and operate from January to December. To cater to working parents, these schools offer childcare services before and after curriculum hours, and operate from 7 am to 7 pm. Singaporeans are eligible to fee subsidies in these schools.This infographic shows the key differences.
All EtonHouse schools welcome children from all nationalities.
Our Singaporean students go to Singapore MOE schools after graduating from K2, while our international students can continue their education in EtonHouse International School all the way to secondary and high school both within and outside of Singapore. We have schools in 12 different countries.
The child-teacher ratio depends on the age cohort of the class. At EtonHouse, we have a very rich ratio so as to cater to the individual strengths and interests of children in our care. The ratio helps our teaching staff to develop learning programmes that respond to the individual child.
|18 months – 2 years||Pre-Nursery||1 : 4-6|
|2 years – 3 years||Nursery One||1 : 8|
|3 years – 4 years||Nursery Two||1 : 10|
|4 years – 5 years||Kindergarten 1||1 : 12|
|5 years – 6 years||Kindergarten 2||1 : 15|
EtonHouse educators are recruited from all over the world including the United Kingdom, Ireland, United States of America, Canada, Australia, China, Korea, Japan and Singapore.
Core teachers have a Diploma in Early Childhood. Most of them have gone above the minimum qualification requirements and have already attained their Degree qualification or are pursuing their studies while teaching. All our Principals have a leadership qualification in early childhood over and above their teaching qualification and numerous years of experience in the profession.
EtonHouse has a dedicated in-house research and develop arm with pedagogists who focus on quality and bringing in research and best practice from around the world. Apart from strengthening the programmes on EtonHouse campuses and providing continuous professional development opportunities to EtonHouse educators, it regularly organises industry forums and workshops that attract educators form the Asian region and around the globe.
Our Inquire Think Learn curriculum (inspired by the Educational Project of Reggio Emilia) has been designed to integrate content/learning across all areas of the curriculum i.e. children develop mathematical understanding as they cook (measure and count); work outdoors (use spatial language as they climb up, over, through) or access blocks (height, measurement and geometry).
Teachers are supported in developing observation skills i.e. to observe children’s learning as they are engaged in play and work experiences. Teachers access these observations of children’s ideas and interests to determine the next step in curriculum design. As such, the curriculum is individualized and highly in tune with children’s ideas, interests and motivations.
In EtonHouse, children are active participants in their own learning. We value and support children’s curiosity and skills of observation as the basis of a curriculum which aims to build skills of exploration and discovery; investigation and research; collaboration and team membership abilities. Working with an established set of goals, teachers shape curriculum experiences to extend and complicate children’s initial thinking.
Documentation of children’s learning is also a very vital component of our curriculum, ensuring that children’s learning and our teaching is made visible to others.
Mandarin is a critical component of an EtonHouse education and at every EtonHouse pre-school, children are immersed in an integrated bilingual environment where all our classrooms have an English and a Mandarin-speaking teacher at all times interacting with the children in their respective languages.
We are especially proud of our unique learning environments. Apart from classroom environments that seamlessly integrate with the common areas, our schools have beautifully designed studios to encourage the ‘100 languages of children’-storytelling studio, light studio, tinkering studio, art studios to name a few. We also have specialist teachers in PE, Music and Art. Our visual and performing arts specialists offer a very unique programme that empowers children to express themselves confidently and creatively.
Some of our larger campuses such as Thomson, Newton and 718 Mountbatten are IB authorised schools. These schools follow the IB curriculum framework. The other pre-schools follow an inquiry based approach.
All schools are unified in their curriculum approach and are inspired by the Reggio Emilia Educational Project of Northern Italy. We believe that young children should be respected as competent thinkers and communicators who are offered many opportunities to engage with a range of materials and resources that extend and challenge their thinking. We believe in delivering a programme that is relevant and meaningful to our families-an international perspective with Asian roots.
EtonHouse Newton and Thomson are the first stand-alone IB authorised pre-schools in Singapore.
At every EtonHouse pre-school, children are immersed in an integrated bilingual environment where all our classrooms have an English and a Mandarin speaking teacher at all times interacting with the children in their respective languages. We have over the years adapted our second language programme to follow an inquiry based philosophy in line with our mainstream programme. Chinese language learning is therefore child responsive and derived from children’s interests which allows it to be spontaneous and enjoyable. Children are involved in the learning process and feel a sense of ownership. We also believe that a multi-cultural foundation is as important as a multi-lingual one. Cultural immersion is therefore a critical part of our Chinese programme and includes elements such as calligraphy and chinese performing arts to name a few.
We have a Chinese immersion childcare centre in Hwa Chong International School offering a programme entirely conducted in Mandarin for children as young as 18 months old. This Chinese immersion programme is also offered in our 717 Mountbatten pre-school.
The EtonHouse schools offer a rich extra-curricular programme and a wide range of after-school activities, depending on the interests of our learning communities. This may range from soccer to ceramics, from dance to speech and drama and varies across the centres.
Importantly, during the course of regular academic hours and depending on the centres, our students enjoy physical education, art and/or music and movement classes taught by full-time EtonHouse specialists too.
Typically, EtonHouse children come from all corners of the globe. It is not uncommon to have children from several different countries in any one class. In our multi-cultural learning environment, children spontaneously learn about different cultures and traditions, thus giving them a more holistic perspective of people. It also develops in them the ability to work well in a diverse socio-cultural context.
Parents and teachers communicate regularly and effectively via e-mail and where possible, face to face communication. You are welcome to make a mutually acceptable time to meet with the Principal or your child’s teacher to discuss any matter relating to your child.
Pre-School Care and Routine
Yes this is provided through an external transport provider. Please approach the school’s Parent Liaison Office for details on the routes and bus fees.
Starting pre-school is an important milestone in your child’s educational journey. The first few weeks of school can be unsettling for both parents and children. Each child is unique and settles in at a different pace. Thus, it is important for parents to encourage children and talk positively about the new environment, friends, educators and activities. This will reassure children and help them feel positive and about the new environment.
EtonHouse schools adopt a ‘no nut policy’. We have have a policy in place for the management of Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis.
Upon enrollment, parents have to inform the school about their children’s allergies to either food (including nuts) or medication. All of the teachers are first aid qualified at all times, responding to severe allergic reactions is part of that training. Teachers are also trained to lookout for situations that could become an emergency e.g., rashes/ itchy skin, watery eyes, swelling of the lips, etc.
Breakfast, lunch and 2 snacks are provided as part of the school fee. Our pre-schools serve 3 types of meals: Non-Vegetarian (consists of chicken/ fish/ egg/ vegetables), Vegetarian (consists of protein-rich vegetarian sources and eggs) and Special Meal which consist of options such as Dairy-free, Gluten-free, egg-free.
The menu is developed in consultation with nutritionists and varies on a weekly basis to encourage children to try new and different types of food. The menu is shared with the school community and feedback is obtained on a regular basis.
At EtonHouse we respect children as independent and capable individuals. We aim to foster respect for people, feelings, our environment and ourselves. Kind, appropriate and polite words will always be used by everyone in the school community. We therefore instil positive behaviour in children through positive guidance.
We call it ‘positive behaviour guidance’ as against ‘disciplining’ or ‘punishing’ children. The strategies used in a positive guidance approach help children to reflect on their actions; to verbalize their emotions and to express their feelings and views which must then be listened to and respected. Our strategies are based on negotiation, communication and collaboration with young children to instill positive behaviour that is intrinsically motivated rather than dependent on external factors.
Our teaching staff work with children to assist them in understanding the need for guidelines, boundaries and appropriate behaviour in our school community. Positive guidance could include offering choices to children; reinforcing empathy, instilling social responsibility and self regulation strategies and setting examples of positive behavior. We are against acts of aggression or punishment inflicted both physically and mentally.