Saturday, July 02, 2005
time for class?
It's difficult to NOT try to teach Day things. I've always said I just wanted to enjoy my son, but at this stage when he's obviously picking things up, the temptation to try and help him pick up MORE things at a FASTER rate is there.
Especially since, as a stay-home mom, his intelligence inevitably becomes my performance indicator (even though no one says it aloud) and the only way I can see RESULTS (there we go, that sickening word) is through him.
So I'm doing a great job if he's bright as a button and able to call an elephant an elephant at 14 months (of course he can't), but if he can't even manage a No at two years...
In that sense, it's very hard for me to just sit back, fold my arms, let him do his own thing and catch him if he falls. It sometimes feel like I'm wasting my time. I feel as if I should be coming up with all sorts of creative games to ENGAGE (that's another sickening word) him and help him to LEARN (eeew).
It doesn't help when I'm always working on articles about parenting stuff, enrichment classes and all, and it seems it's quite standard to send kids packing to school at 18 months. 18 MONTHS!!! That's just four months away. Of course they call it Play School and it's not a whole-day thing, but the playing part is to get somewhere and that's to get them to learn. Yucks.
The neighbour down the road has been swearing by Glenn Doman flash cards, she keeps on telling me how her grandson was able to read before he turned two because she faithfully flashed those home-made cards at him several times a day. Now, that's pretty incredible.
But it astounds me. I started school when I was four. Nowadays, nearly every kid I know starts (very expensive) pre-school at two.
Honestly I feel guilty sometimes for doing nothing at home but there are so many times in the day when I look at Day, he's looking at me expectantly, and absolutely nothing comes to mind. Zilch. I don't feel like bringing him out (it's too hot), I've run out of things to do at home, I don't feel like hamming it up and tickling him AGAIN.
Why can't I do what those classes do at home? I can't. He doesn't sit still. I tried flash cards, he scooted off after 5 seconds. But in class he may pay attention.
So that sneaky thought creeps in: Maybe I should send him that Montessori down the road, or the reading babes programme. At least he's doing something productive there.
* I also think a lot of modern stay-home moms can't do this parenting thing full-time. I think it would kill them, like it would kill me. Hence, there are heaps of work-at-home moms now who don't want their brains to rot. I write and play violin at gigs hell of a lot, Debbie is opening a maternity shop, Julyn is lecturing part-time.