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Preschool/nurseries in Chile

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fiorentina99 Sat 10-Nov-12 01:33:27

Apologies if I'm posting this in the wrong section!

I'm basically looking for advice on the effect of a toddler attending a preschool in a foreign country when he doesn't really speak the language.

My husband and I will be moving to Chile in January for a year due to my husband's work, and we'll be taking our 2 children with us who will be 3 years and 3 months old when we go.

My son currently attends a preschool in the UK, and I'd like for him to attend a preschool in Chile so that he mixes with other children. My husband's work have recommended a large commercial nursery with lots of branches all over Santiago where we will be staying. However, it doesn't appear that this nursery will be multilingual, and I'm not sure that the staff will speak any English.

Neither my son nor myself really speak Spanish. I've had lessons but am still very basic (present tense only!), and my son's knowledge has come from the BBC Muzzy language system and Dora the Explorer - it's very hard to tell how much, if any, he understands. Also, Chilean Spanish sounds very different to Spanish Spanish.

I'm not sure if it would be a good or bad thing to send him to a preschool where he doesn't yet speak the language. On one hand I'm thinking it might be great for him as he's so young he may well pick up the language really quickly, and he could really benefit from the experience. On the other hand I'm worried it would be really confusing and upsetting for him (I have nightmares about him asking for the potty and no one understanding him). He's not great with change - he's recently moved up a class at his current preschool and he's not happy about it as it's 'different' (even though he knows all the staff and the room), and he's very clingy with tears when I drop him off in the morning. He's fine when I pick him up in the afternoon however.

I won't be working when I'm out there so I could take care of him myself, but I'm really keen for him to socialise with other children. From what I understand there isn't much in the way of preschool classes or parent and toddler groups like there is in the UK (although I may be mistaken).

Does anyone have any advice on whether or not sending him to a foreign language (for him) preschool would be a bad idea?

Also, if anyone knows of any bilingual English-Spanish nurseries in Santiago please could you get in touch as that would be great.

Many thanks in advance for any advice!

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