Source : Registered Educational Psychologist, Pang Chi Wah
Even if approximately seven to eight out of ten parents prefer morning classes for their children, some may still opt for afternoon classes. When children wake up and leave for school together with their parents, they can take naps, which may lead to better learning. Generally, there are higher expectations for children attending morning classes, but what issues might they encounter?
However, young children, especially those in K1 or N1, may have longer sleep times. Therefore, they may experience emotional issues when getting up in the morning. In such cases, parents should choose afternoon classes for their children, even if they are reluctant. It’s not because you couldn’t secure a spot in the morning class but rather a deliberate choice.
The reason for this choice might be that both parents finish work very late, possibly returning home after 7 p.m., and then spend time with their child until midnight. Quality family time is precious. Do you value study time more or family time more? Sleeping until 11 a.m. the next day is not much different from taking an afternoon nap, as it amounts to a full 10 hours of sleep from midnight to 10 a.m. In other words, even without an afternoon nap, there is enough sleep quality and sufficient family time.
If you’ve applied for morning classes and your child is unwilling to wake up early, they will need to gradually adapt. This adaptation can begin with waking up at 10 a.m. and gradually moving to 9:30 a.m., 9 a.m., and 8:30 a.m. There are also several techniques for waking them up. For instance, there was a case where instead of waking up their head, they woke up the body. This involved massaging the feet, waking up the feet, waking up the abdomen, waking up the back, and then waking up the hands and feet. In addition, providing ample light by pulling back the curtains, turning on the TV, and introducing the smell of breakfast can help. If there’s a favorite food aroma, it’s even easier to get the child out of bed when it smells delicious.
Parents should be prepared on both fronts. On one hand, they shouldn’t automatically assume that morning classes are the only good option. On the other hand, if for certain reasons, they choose morning classes, they should add more gradual steps to the waking-up process and provide multi-sensory stimulation to help the child wake up through their willpower. This is because the concern is that if their willpower wakes up but their body isn’t synchronized, it can be very challenging.