In today's Meet & Greet interview, we catch up with Melissa Leong, Principal of EtonHouse Pre-School Robertson Walk.
Melissa fervently believes that early years education should be genuine and fun, and that educators should be facilitators in the classroom where they participate actively in children’s learning. In recent years, she has helped to facilitate parenting talks on topics ranging from regulating children’s behaviour to how children learn though music.
1. Full name/ Nickname?
When I was in school, there were many Melissa(s), and I was given the nickname ‘Melo’, perhaps because I love to drink “Milo”!
2. What are your hobbies?
I enjoy playing musical instruments and doing anything related to music and dance. I also enjoy travelling, and when I do, I go off the beaten track in search for unique and authentic local experiences. I believe in a healthy and balanced lifestyle and engage in sports like swimming, indoor cycling, boxing, yoga and rock-climbing. I take pleasure in reading and being a storyteller and am registered with the National Library Board as a storyteller. I also love cooking for my loved ones.
3. Favorite thing on your desk?
My snack box! I put different things into my snack box daily - fruits, nuts, biscuits and even chocolates. As I move around quite a bit in school every day, and since I tend to take light meals, I get hungry really easily. Having a snack box with my favourite food helps me tide through hunger pangs during the day.
4. What do you enjoy most about being a principal?
Being able to grow and journey with every member of the school community. I enjoy building relationships, having dialogues with colleagues to solve problems, and reflecting on our practice. I am incredibly inspired by children and feel a great sense of belonging to the school community.
5. What inspires you to keep going each day?
I enjoy building relationships with people and see relationship-building as fundamental to the success of the school. This includes gaining children’s trust, helping teachers see/ reach their potential and understanding the needs of each family.
6. How would you describe your school in one sentence?
The school is a vibrant and diverse community with a commitment to lifelong learning.
7. What is your favorite spot in the school, and why?My current favorite spot is our corridor garden that sits at the school’s entrance. A few teachers and I started the corridor garden with some seeds we brought from home. After much experimentation and patience, our seedlings blossomed into fully grown plants. Our growing corridor garden has piqued children’s interest and curiosity and inspired many of them to start their very own gardening projects.
8. What is a piece of advice you would give to parents in supporting their children’s education journey?
The child will never be as young as they are today, so let them be children!
Visit EtonHouse Robertson Walk and meet Melissa and her team of teachers!