Maiko (Japan)

When we went to see Tokyo Children’s Garden before it opened, we liked everything about it: the founders’ and teachers’ way of thinking; the small number of students; and the fabulous space. Our daughter, who will soon be three, was the first student at the school. She cried at first but soon she settled. She really enjoys her time at the school. She even wants to go on Saturdays and Sundays!

For our daughter, more important than going to Tokyo Children’s Garden is the personal interactions she has with the people there. She loves her teachers—especially Ann—as well as her classmates, and talks about them every day. 

We often look at the daily journal together while she explains the photos to me. She describes what she did, where she went, what she had for lunch, and how she felt doing various activities.

I’m really relieved and happy that both my daughter and I really like the school. 

eric wang
Jason (Australia)

At the moment my daughter attends a local Japanese preschool three days a week and goes to Tokyo Children’s Garden two days a week. She loves it and always asks when her next day at Tokyo Children’s Garden will be. 

We like the idea of her being with her Japanese friends at the local preschool, where she has spent time with them since she was a baby, learning the way Japanese kids learn, being involved in Japanese festivals, and so on. But the uniqueness of Tokyo Children’s Garden—its focus on the child—attracted us. The parent–teacher ratio is good but it is not as important as the fact that the five teachers are with the children all day, and then meet after school to talk about each child and how best to support them in the way they learn.

It’s neither a passive “childcare-like environment” nor an academic “push” environment; it’s one that allows the children to be fulfilled, to have the freedom to blossom into who they are individually as well as within a close-kit small team of colleagues. 

During other summer schools my daughter has attended, she has described the big activities that she has done but with Tokyo Children’s Garden the difference is she talks about each individual person at the school, too.

Communication from the school to us is great, as is our ability to be involved with our daughter’s learning journey. We have started reading the daily journals we receive from the teachers to her, even on the days she was not there. She is very happy and comfortable. I think my daughter and the other children will always be happy, supported, and free because they are the center of attention and what they are doing is encouraged. We’re glad that she is developing confidence and self-reliance to grow, in safety. 

eric wang
Jo (Australia)

My daughter is really sprouting since joining Tokyo Children’s Garden just over two months ago. It’s the first time she’s been out of the home at preschool and is enjoying every minute. From attending on her first day she has been very confident and loves all the teachers there. She is so happy to go to preschool each day.

Recently she has started to speak some Japanese words, thanks to her interactions with bilingual children at the school and the Japanese songs and books that they enjoy together.

The school looks really beautiful; it’s such a warm and welcoming environment and a great open space for the children to be in. I’m glad all the children from two to six years old are together because it’s a nice way for them to learn from each other and to learn how to care for each other.

Since my daughter joined I have seen a huge difference in the care she takes with glasses and crockery at meal times because she is accustomed to using them at Tokyo Children’s Garden every day.

 All the staff are very warm and knowledgeable. In particular, Ann, who I know from the pre-school my sons attended, has an amazing knowledge and background in childhood education. 

The daily journal the teachers produce is really personal. Each child is mentioned by name and there are great photos. As my daughter can’t really describe what she did at preschool, it’s so nice to have a summary to help me understand her day and keep in touch with what is going on at the school. The journal even shares what the lunch was, which I am delighted to see is always diverse and not babyish. 

eric wang
Akiko (Japan)

My husband and I looked at a number of international schools for our son in Kyoto and Tokyo. At lots of them, he wouldn’t even enter the classroom but, thanks to Ann, Hisao, and the other teachers, he felt really at ease in Tokyo Children’s Garden and loved to play on our visit. My husband and I liked the homely feeling on entering the school as well as the plants, open space, and plentiful light. As our home location was flexible, we were able to move to Tokyo so that our son could attend Tokyo Children’s Garden.

Since he joined in May, he has loved taking care of the younger children and is always talking about them. As he is an only child, we are so glad that he has this opportunity to be in a family-like setting where he can grow. 

I receive the school journal every day and look at it with him. It’s a wonderful way for me to find out what he is doing and he loves looking at it, too. It’s a really fun read and it’s reassuring to see how well the children are developing together. My husband works abroad but from the daily journal he can see that Kyle is growing physically and mentally and well taken care of by the teachers

The lunch is organic, which gives me peace of mind. And, thanks to the teachers encouraging the children to try new foods when they eat together, our son is now eating vegetables, which is a really big help for me. It’s good training for life, to have the children serve and eat with others and learn not to waste food.  

With the very high teacher to student ratio, the teachers can really look after each child. I’m happy that our son has the freedom to learn through play and I have peace of mind that he is being well cared for. The teachers take care of everything, even choosing child-friendly floor cleaning using a steam-mop!

eric wang
Doan (Vietnam)

It’s only been two months since our son joined Tokyo Children’s Garden but his development since then has been so fast. He didn’t really speak English before but now he speaks it a lot. As he also speaks Japanese and Vietnamese, he now uses one of the three languages to communicate, whichever he finds the most natural at the time. 

My three older children pursued a different preschool education, two in Japanese private school and one in an international preschool focused on study but I now think that learning through play is the best approach for young children.

At Tokyo Children’s Garden our son is playing and developing at the same time. I love the fact that the teachers are helping him to develop his thinking and problem-solving power through play.  At this young age I think this is better than developing it through focused or structured learning. He is keen to know things and is showing interest in things. Through the actions of the teachers, I feel that he is developing naturally. He recently surprised me by solving the problem of how to carry many different things. He seems to be thinking of the best way of doing things and then going on to do those things well.  

As he is only two (three in September) he does not yet have the ability to explain things well but when we look at the daily journal together he often points out things he remembers. He’s always excited to come to school and can’t wait to ring the doorbell and see everyone. He loves the teachers and the other children so I’m excited for his friendships to continue to bloom.

eric wang