Mother Hen Visits Preschool

So, it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. We have been busy buying our first house (possibly more on that later), teaching the 9-year-old’s Sunday school class, reconnecting with friends and, oh yes, STARTING PRESCHOOL.
My little boy is growing up.
I’m not sure you would really call it preschool, but it nonetheless broke my mother heart to see my little three year old guy go. And by go I mean walk in and then spend the rest of the time begging me not to leave him there alone.
The class is only one day a week for two hours and it rotates between the houses of all eight kids that are involved, with the moms doing the teaching. I think it’s a fantastic, informal way to introduce little ones to school and I’m very glad we could join the group.
On the first day my son ended up needing me to stay the whole two hours. He had a few fits and cried here and there and flat out refused to do the first counting activity but in the end he was okay and agreed to go again the next week.
We did and again I stayed, but this time there was no crying and not so much clinging. It turns out that these two experiences, in combination with a few previous ones, have led to some really great discussions with my husband about our son and his introverted nature. (Definitely more on this later.)
The other thing these experiences did was instantly flip a fierce “where does my child rank amongst others?” switch that I thought, or rather hoped, I didn’t have.
My son and only one other of the kids are three while the rest are four or near five. My gut reaction to this was: Will he always be behind? Will he feel bad about this? Will the moms know this and adjust accordingly? Is this too advanced?
When I saw the worksheet they were doing (tracing letters, among other things) I was shocked at how well the other kids could do it. After watching another of the boys trace the letters my son said something like “I only know how to color it in” and colored over the letters with scribbles.
My thoughts? “Oh no, he doesn’t like to attempt things he hasn’t thought out a lot first. How will he ever be willing to do any of these activities? Should he be able to do this by now? How did the other kids learn to do this so well? Did their moms teach them? Should we have been working on this? We need to work on this. Maybe my son isn’t as advanced for his age as we thought.”
Whoa crazy mother hen! Slow yourself down!
Now, I am a reasonable, logical, educated (in education none the less) woman that KNOWS every child develops at their own rate. I KNOW that there is absolutely no need to worry, especially at this age, about reading and writing beyond frequent exposure through reading to him. Yet, at that moment, logic flew right out the window.
But now, a bit removed from the situation I can see the bigger picture. There is nothing wrong with my son. He’s not behind in anyway. Maybe he’ll learn how to trace letters this year, maybe not. Maybe he’ll eventually be able to stay for the whole two hours without me, maybe not. It really doesn’t matter.
What matters is that he is a happy, healthy little boy who knows his parents love him very much. I think everything else will fall in to place eventually.
So until the next time that fierce switch is flipped (and I’m sure there will be a next time), it’s back to the hen house for me.

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2 thoughts on “Mother Hen Visits Preschool

  1. Linda Whitehead says:

    I have written a couple fo comments/replies and deleted them. Writing does not work as well all face to face conversation, which we will have sometime. In the meantime, mother hen, you are a great mom! Hold that thought and listen to the Spirit. He can tell you when to worry, withdraw, keep pushing. You and your husband are the ones entitled to inspiration for raising your children–follow the inspriation.

    • Terra says:

      I once had a great friend and phenomenal educator tell me to be a tigress for my kids when it comes to schooling and how they will be required to fit into the system. I always thought that was good advice though I think you’re right, that the Spirit will also let me know when to withdraw.

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