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A Hapa Whapa?

Yes. My thoughts exactly.
When a friend first mentioned that they were looking at a "Montessori" preschool for their then 2 year old, I stuttered "a Monti--wha?" I was clueless. Waldorf? Isn't that a salad? Reggio Emilia? Wait un minuto. Do I need to start studying Italian to know what the heck is going on here?

I thought kids just played in the yard, worked along side their moms, and passed the days away jumping in puddles, rolling in the dirt, and sampling a variety of tasty finds on their daily creative adventures...

Apparently, I was grossly under prepared for the "three progressive approaches to early childhood education that appear to be growing in influence in North America." Ok. Breath. Zozie is only 29 months.
We are NOT behind.

After diving into some literature and reading more online about the various methods, the choice became more clear... Zo is decidedly a Montessori child. With or without the label.

Now... also on the "hit list" is my personal desire for Zo to MASTER, along with his classical violin, concert piano, and competitive tennis, the language of Mandarin Chinese.  Every Chinese mom's dream.  Oh, and be a Doctor.
Again, he is only 29 months so we have just alittle time on our sides.
But only alittle.  No really, I'm serious.  Ok, maybe not.

Having immigrated to the US at the age of 7, I am still conversant in Mandarin, can read it, but have mostly lost my writing for lack of practice...

As you may know, Zozie is 50% Chinese, 100% Hapa.

Hapa is a Hawaiian slang (meaning "half") for someone whose mixed racial heritage includes Asian or Pacific Islander ancestry.
We are all alittle "mixed up" in our toddler home-days anyways. I have no idea what I'm doing homeschooling, didn't know who Montessori was, and I MUST do all this in Chinese!

In this LAB, nothing is Tried, and who knows what is True...So, yes. This should be interesting.

For a short summary of the various schooling types mentioned:


  1. Oh my goodness I am SO HAPPY I found your blog!!! This post really made me laugh, especially the "He's only 29 months so we're not behind" bit. My daughter is now 14 months and until a couple of days ago I had more or less completely forgotten my Montessori training which I took 13 years ago(only did the theory without practical hours in a school.) Today I started looking at resources online and hooray found your blog. I love your attitude, your resourcefulness, your humor, your smiling Zozie. Wow, really looking forward to reading all of the posts.
    Simple home, simple school, simple life - YES!

  2. I love this blog. I have a 25 month old daughter. I have been looking for so long for nce, simple, educational activities to do with her but without any success until i found this blog. Thank you very much, this is a huge help. Your son is incredibly sweet. A pity that you dont write anymore but i guess life gets very busy.
    Thanks again

    1. Hi Giulia! I now have my own 21 month old girl and your post just lit up my day...really! The LAB has been quiet for a while now, with tons of draft posts never quite making it to the publishing table...but your comment really warmed my heart and gave me a much needed push to get back in the LAB and start sharing again! Alot has happened for us since I last pushed the publish button...thanks for reading and posting! Hope to be releasing again soon here in the new year:) Happy 2014!

    2. Looking forward to reading your new posts! Happy 2014!

  3. THANK You for Your blog. Iread it.. It's inspire me. I have 18 month young son. And we really like Montessori methods and Emmi Pickler methods. And Your blog is SUPPER.
    Happy New Year, and wait You here.=)