Friday, May 16, 2008
What's your rush?
Since September of last year we have had pretty much the same children through all the sessions for our preschool program. Most parents are great, some are reserved, some are just fun to be around and you look forward to seeing them and their children every week, and then there are the' problem parents'. Not that these parents are bad parents, they are actually really nice and I do like them, the only problem is they think they are the experts on their children, given they are their children and they should know them best, but sometimes I have to question the motives of these parents or what their goals are concerning their children. Unless a child has a mental or physical disability most of them learn their letters and number or use the potty by the time they start kindergarten, but these parents are just pushing their children through childhood milestones without any regard of the child's readiness to do so. They treat toilet training like getting a puppy housebroken and treating the capability of readiness to read and write like they have the next genius on hand. Given again, most parents want their children to do well, get ahead in life and be proud of what they accomplished, sometimes I wonder do they do it for themselves or do they really have the best interest of the child in mind? If the child isn't ready for anything like that, you can do all you want they won't be doing it and even though you might make slight progress at one point there will be a regression sooner or later of some sorts. So what's the rush? Just so you can say "oh my child did this at so and so age'"? Two of our mothers recently attended a workshop given them tools to teach the children letters and words and reading, and one of them was totally upset at the end, that she already is so far behind in teaching her child....give me a break....the kid just turned 3, of course there are exceptions to the norm, but your child just might not be it and that's ok. I believe we in society try to rush our children so far ahead way of their time, without thinking about the consequences of our actions....what kind of self esteem does one develop if one is not capable of doing the thing you want them to do at any given moment of time? Why compare your child to other children? And why the need to always be better than others? What's wrong with being as good as they are? Well maybe it's just me, but for me being smart isn't all to be all, there are more important things in life than having the smartest kid on the block, and just because your kid might do good now, doesn't necessarily mean they are good all the time. At this stage social skills would be my main concern, because what good is the smartest kid without any social skills? And I have seen plenty of kids with great booksmarts but have the social intelligent of a earthworm, without any empathy, compassion or feel for fellow humans. Now what is more important? The answer seems clear to me, but then maybe that's just me.