Tadika Seri Delima (TSD) was founded by Mrs. Bernard and has been in operation since 1990 in the neighbourhood of USJ 2. It is easy to spot as it is located on a corner lot along a row of houses right next to SMK Seafield. Its colorful exterior is hard to miss, with its theme colors of red, yellow and blue. Walking in, we saw Mrs. Bernard seated at one of the classroom tables checking some work while waiting for our arrival. She greeted us with a warm smile (that which you always see on a kind loving mother) when we arrived, before showing us in to the kindergarten.
The main area upon entering, which also serves as the classroom for 5-years-old students, was very spacious and brightly lit with natural light pouring in from the windows. Hand-drawn alphabet and number charts could be seen pasted on the walls at children’s eye level in every classroom. These hand-drawn charts are done by the teachers, in simple colors and in blown-up sizes for ease of reading by young children. According to Mrs. Bernard, simple drawings make it easier for young children to remember and learn. There is also an art corner in every classroom, displaying artworks done by the students – under the guidance of teachers. With all the charts and colorful artworks in almost every corner, they make TSD even livelier than it already is.
On the second floor, besides the 2 classrooms for 3-4 years old and 6 years old students respectively, there is another room which they intend to convert it into a video room. “The purpose is to create interest in learning, because young children learn faster through sensory stimulation. We wouldn’t expect young students to sit down all day and learn academic subjects only,” said Mrs. Bernard. There is also a play corner filled with toys where teachers will teach the children about colors, habits and values etc using the toys. “Young children love to do coloring. We will let them have coloring sessions and we only instruct them not to color out of the lines. However, we do not restrict the colors they use, there can be 5 different colors in a picture of a flower, because we do not want to limit their imagination.”
At TSD, they adopt the Glenn Doman method of teaching reading by using flashcards to capture children’s attention. Mrs. Bernard was initially inspired by reading a book by Glenn Doman. She learned that flashcard presentations can be used for children as young as few months old to develop reading skills. As young children learn through observations and daily conversations with adults, so flashcards are very useful. Usually they will start with words about children that they can relate, e.g. their own body parts.
Every morning, Mrs. Bernard would arrive at TSD around 5a.m. to make sure everything is in order before any students arrive. Sometimes students would arrive as early as 7a.m., and they would be encouraged to do some small reading before classes start. As we have noticed, there is a row of bookshelves with books for different levels, and there are also the Peter & Jane series. A total of 36 books in the series, teachers at TSD would use Peter & Jane to assess the development of reading skills in their students. Every student is unique so each of them are assessed individually where fast-learners may be allowed to progress faster than their peers.
Although TSD‘s medium of instruction is English and BM, Mandarin classes is also incorporated into their curriculum in order to prepare them for primary school education. On top of that, they also have agama classes for Muslim students. Teachers at TSD are carefully selected, most of them have experience in early childhood education, to provide TLC (tender loving care) to the young students. Mrs. Bernard would check the homework and sign off on the pages on a daily basis, as she believes that it is necessary for her to track the progress of the students and to assess the work of the teachers.
When we asked Mrs. Bernard of the challenges that she had faced in running a kindergarten, we found out that she also take in special kids, such as autistic or Asperger children, for 1-to-1 classes. These special classes are usually conducted after school hours (TSD’s class hours are from 8.30am to 12pm). Having no experience in dealing with special kids, we could only imagine the hardships Mrs. Bernard faces in teaching them. After our interview with Mrs. Bernard, we were impressed by her dedication in helping young children grow and learn. It was her passion that drove her through all the challenges she faced throughout the years at TSD. The factor that distinguishes a kindergarten from others is the passion for teaching and love for kids of the educators.
Find out more about Tadika Seri Delima, USJ 2 Subang Jaya.
93, Jalan USJ 2/3,USJ 2
Subang Jaya, Selangor 47600