Spy Cameras in Gan

A new trend in Israeli parenting involves equipping small children with spy cameras to catch a ganenet (kindergarten teacher) during the act of child abuse. In Makor Rishon's "Tzedek" supplement (January 16), Itzik Wolf wrote that the education ministry is preparing a legal document that will … [Read more...]

Revisiting the Misgeret, or Is Preschool Necessary

This post was originally published in 2008, but is still relevant for many parents. Sadly two readers who commented here, Helene and RivkA, passed away within the last few years. It's bound to happen at one time or another when you are out with your toddler. Your neighbor asks you the question … [Read more...]

Have You Hugged Your Saya’at Today? Teacher’s Aides in Israel

One of the first lessons I learned when my kids started gan (Israeli preschool) is the importance of a good "saya'at," or teacher's aide. The saya'at prepares sandwiches, washes dishes, and cleans floors. She helps children in the bathroom. She cuts up construction paper. In her free time, she gives … [Read more...]

Kids Pay the Price of Free Gan

On August 27, under pressure from last summer's social protests and the Trachtenberg committee, Israel  implemented free education for all 3- and 4-year-olds. This has been in the works for many years. Until this year, the government provided free kindergarten for 5-year-olds, and a (relatively) … [Read more...]

Is a Long Day of Gan Good?

The education ministry's extension of hours for state-run preschools and kindergartens raises practical and educational questions.   Background: In the last several years, Israel's education ministry has been gradually extending the hours of gan (preschool or kindergarten) for 3 to 5 year … [Read more...]

Gan for English Speakers: Yes or No?

A reader wonders whether he and his wife should send their children to an English speaking gan: We are at a point where we need to place our first son into gan (preschool) next year.  We are trying to decide whether to put him in an English-speaking gan for the first few years, and then in a … [Read more...]

Sending Sick Children to School: New Guidelines by Israeli Pediatric Association

The Israeli Pediatric Association has issued new guidelines about sending kids to school or daycare when they are sick. We all know there are some parents who let their sick kids infect everyone else. There are also gananot (kindergarten teachers) who send children home over minor issues. With their … [Read more...]

Two children go missing from gan; found safely three hours later

According to the local paper, two children aged 3.5 and 4 disappeared from gan (preschool) without anyone realizing. At around 11 AM, the ganenet noticed that they didn't return to the gan after playtime in the fenced area outside. After a thorough search of the premises failed to locate the … [Read more...]

Six weeks late: Shalom Kitah Aleph

My son Y, 6, adjusted easily to kindergarten (gan hova) last September, and loved every minute. When I asked the ganenet (teacher) whether he was prepared for first grade, she dismissed the question with a wave of her hand. I see Y as the most even-tempered and least complicated of my children (not … [Read more...]

Rabbi: These are things that are not learned at home

Update: It seems that quite a discussion is going on with the rabbi in the comments section on Moreshet, for those who read Hebrew.A commenter on my previous post drew my attention to a responsum from the Orthodox website Moreshet. Here is my translation:Love and Warmth for a ChildShalom to the … [Read more...]