Where Did The Year Go

Last Friday was finally the last day of school here in Poland for my youngest 2 girls!  Yes, it seems like they go to school FOREVER here compared to the US since most of my friends back home kids have been out for a month already but we do get some AMAZING holiday breaks throughout the school year.

I was a VERY proud mom day on Friday!  My girls survived their first year in Polish school.  “E” was the only non-Polish student in her grade 3 class and the class was taught all in the Polish language.  “E” knew only numbers, basic manners and colors, very basic Polish.  So for her to finish one of the best students in the class I am beyond proud of her.  Not only did she study hard but thanks to some GREAT friends who helped in the beginning of the school year with her homework, Google translate and most importantly the staff at the Sokrate International School, she was able to have a very successful school year.  They added additional Polish classes for all the international students this year to help the kids learn Polish and hired tutors to help with the transition for all the international students which we were not expecting but was a very welcomed surprise!

“A” did just as great in her grade 1 class.  She was as well in the top of her class. In her class she had 2 AMAZING teachers!  One teacher only spoke Polish and the other only spoke English.  They both know both langues but the only spoke and understand the students in what ever language they were suppose too and the even included us parents! So you can guess what teacher I always went to for questions?  They each taught half the subjects so it worked perfect for “E.”  Now her Polish is not to the level as “A’s” but she knows a lot more then she is letting on because as soon as she is around only Polish speaking kids her Polish instantly becomes REALLY good like at the zoo the other month!

"A" & her English teacher! She LOVES her! She was the biggest blessing for making this such a smooth transition for her as "A" spoke VERY little Polish.

“A” & her English teacher! She LOVES her! She was the biggest blessing for making this such a smooth transition for her as “A” spoke VERY little Polish.

Mr. Christian the Head Master, getting his teacher gift from "E." "E" thinks is so cool because he is a volleyball referee too.

Mr. Christian the Head Master, getting his teacher gift from “E.” “E” thinks is so cool because he is a volleyball referee too.

It is Polish custom to bring flowers to the teachers the last day of school. So you saw lots of kids carrying flowers in the school.

It is Polish custom to bring flowers to the teachers the last day of school. So you saw lots of kids carrying flowers in the school. The lines at flowers shop lines were crazy the past 2 days.

For the girls teachers, we did a boxes of chocolate flowers.  They are going to get enough flowers that day, so we thought they would enjoy something different.

For the girls teachers, we did a boxes of chocolate flowers. They were going to get enough flowers that day, so we thought they would enjoy something different.

On the last day of school they did 2 assemblies.  One for grades 0-2 and another one for 3-5. And luck me, I got to attend both hour long assemblies!!

The MC of the ceremony was a classmate of "A's" and did an AMAZING job for only being in 1st grade.

The MC of the ceremony was a classmate of “A’s” and did an AMAZING job for only being in 1st grade.

The grade 0 (aka kindergarten) doing a song for us.  This kids are so cute!!

We were treated again to another musical number by the school music & instrument club.

DSC_0844

The grade 0 (aka kindergarten) doing a song for us. This kids are so cute!!

This was a proud mom moment..."A" is getting her diploma and a few certificates as she was one of the best in her class!!

This was a proud mom moment…”A” is getting her diploma and a few certificates as she was one of the best in her class!!

Time for the classroom end of year gifts and thank you's.

Time for the classroom end of year gifts and thank you’s.

A few of the mom's in the class made these really cool scrapbook with artwork from the kids for each of them.  These 2 teachers are GREAT and so excited that "A" gets to have them for 2 more years.

A few of the mom’s in the class made these really cool scrapbook with artwork from the kids for each of them. These 2 teachers are GREAT and so excited that “A” gets to have them for 2 more years.

Of course there was going to be food, its a party right?

Of course there was going to be food, its a party right?

Pani (Polish for Mrs.) Teresa the Head Mistress getting her end of the year gift from "A."  Compared to the drama we had at the last school the girls in

Pani (Polish for Mrs.) Teresa the Head Mistress getting her end of the year gift from “A.” Compared to the drama we had at the last school this school is complete opposite and thank God everyday for guiding my heart to move the girls to this school.

The girls are so at home here at the school that even the custodians were on the list for people to get chocolate flowers!

The girls are so at home here at the school that even the custodians and the security guard were on the list for people to get chocolate flowers!

Now it was time for "E's" award ceremony!

Now it was time for “E’s” award ceremony!

We were treated to a few great dance routine's by the students.  These 3 are AWESOME!

We were treated to a few great dance routine’s by the students. These 3 are AWESOME!

"E" quick going through last minute review for her dance routine with her gym teacher.  This teacher is AWESOME, "E" is hooked on sports now because of her!!!

“E” quick going through last minute review for her dance routine with her gym teacher. This teacher is AWESOME, “E” is hooked on sports now because of her!!!  So is so hooked she is begging us to enroll her in the local sports elementary school here, so she can start focusing on handball and volleyball.

"E" and a few of her friends in the school dance group did a routine for us too.

“E” and a few of her friends in the school dance group did a routine for us too.

Guess who was in the top of her class too?  "E!"  Words can not describe how proud I am of her for this.  Beginning of the school year she spoke VERY broken Polish and then to finish the school year this high academically is AMAZING!

Guess who was in the top of her class too? “E!” Words can not describe how proud I am of her for this. Beginning of the school year she spoke VERY broken Polish and then to finish the school year this high academically is AMAZING!

The top student in each class got this neat trophy.

The top student in each class got this neat trophy.

In the schools here they have the same teacher from grade 1-3 and then a different teacher for grades 4-5.  So here all the 3rd graders line up for the announcement to see who their new teacher for next year will be.  "E" is so excited for her new teacher as she was her Polish language teacher this year.

In the schools here they have the same teacher for grades 1-3 and then a different teacher for grades 4-5. So here all the 3rd graders line up for the announcement to see who their new teacher for next year will be. “E” is so excited for her new teacher as she was her Polish language teacher this year.

Since majority of these students had "E's" teacher for the last 3 years this good-bye was hard for both the teacher and student.

Since majority of these students had “E’s” teacher for the last 3 years this good-bye was hard for both the teacher and student.  This teacher was more AWESOME than I can put into words!  She spoke next to no English so it made it a bit difficult in the beginning but she and “E” stayed after school a few times so “E” could teach her some English and her Polish.  For her to welcome “E” as much as she did made we wish we would have had her for all 3 years and to see where “E” would be now.

Lots of end of year pictures with friends!  She had made some life long friends this school year.

Lots of end of year pictures with friends! She had made some life long friends this school year.

And lots phone number exchanging with friends to make sure some summer sleepovers can happen.

And lots phone number exchanging with friends to make sure some summer sleepovers can happen.

The first day of school we celebrated with chocolate fondue, so it was only appropriate to end the school year with chocolate fondue at our favorite coffee shop Beyrouth Cafe.

The first day of school we celebrated with chocolate fondue, so it was only appropriate to end the school year with chocolate fondue at our favorite coffee shop Beyrouth Cafe.

I cannot put into words how excited I am that my youngest two did this good this school year! This year I know I lost a few friends because I moved my kids to this school compared to keeping them at the other International school where most of my husbands co-workers kids go but you know what? I really don’t care, it is their loss!  When I see what my kids are doing compared to their kids it is night and day both academically and socially(and oh wait it is half the price!).  Sokrates International school is absolutely WONDERFUL and if you in the Bydgoszcz area and looking for school for your child this is the school!!

Next school year Sokrates school is growing even more because it is that great and will be offering Cambrige International curriculum which is taught in all English by native English speakers for all grades.  We are leaving the girls in their Polish classes but will have an extra hour or 2 a day with Cambridge classes on top of their normal classes like a few other English speaking students are doing.

THANK YOU Sokrates for the most amazing year for my girls!!

Do you have an child in traditional school if you live in a foreign country? What are some of the positive and negatives for your children?

love kelley
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4 Responses to Where Did The Year Go

  1. Paulina says:

    I’ve just read all you published here and… you know what? I did my best (as Kasia and Jagoda did) to make your girls feel happy here. I didn’t expect such warm words about me since I remember you telling on another occasion that I am the worst teacher you have ever met. I know that was a joke! and in fact your words were the praise, but I was always wondering if there wasn’t a grain of truth in what you said, maybe I had made some mistake and you wanted to give me a hint…
    THANK YOU for all you’ve written. That’s the best appraisal of my work :)
    Best, Paulina

  2. June S. says:

    (Where Did The Year Go) Wow! What a great review of the school. I am so glad that your children were made to feel welcome. And yes, these years are flying by way too fast also.

  3. Suzanne says:

    Just checked out your blog, very cool. I love to see other blogs of Americans living in Poland. I just started looking at your blog, so I don’t know much about you, yet. Can’t wait to read more, I am interested to see how other children do in Polish school since I have a 9 year old in school here.

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