Sometimes as a mother, I feel like the worst mother ever. In a world of hyper-uber-super moms, with their iphone calendar booked with soccer games, princess parties, art classes, and mommy and me events; their facebook statuses chock full of pinterest ideas like a realistic 3-d Spiderman organic gluten free homemade cake, a early learning phonics game using play-do and guaranteeing reading proficiency by age three, and daily science project-meets-craft reminders, it is no wonder I feel like crap. I'm the mom who is lucky to remember to get out Valentine's cards. I don't have a daily schedule of fifteen minute increments and activities.
And then...I found this article about learning and said, hallelujah! It made me think in terms of this blog and all that is education as well as into my own child rearing.
Sure, my son has yet to make hand-print turkeys or baloon string art and he isn't in pee wee sports even if he is nearly age three.
I let him play. I thought perhaps I was the worst mom ever for merely giving him tons of praise, love, snuggles, and unstructured play time. I mean, according to his IEP, he needs to know and label 7 body parts not 5. According to TV, with commercials like ABCmouse.com, he should be reading by now. Oops.
But look at "uncivilized" societies. Go into the Kalihari bushmen tribes or Amazonian tribes and watch the kids. They don't have pee-wee football, early reading tablet apps, structured play groups, or a curriculum. They simply learn by playing, mimicing, doing, interacting.
My son does just that. Sure, I pay attention and interact....but I more just,,,facilitate his discoveries. Sometimes he surprises me and does things completely self-taught. He can operate apps and netflix movies on an android tablet, windows computer, Wii, and Xbox console. He can draw and place his masterpiece as a desktop image. He can take photos of monochromatic themes around the home....I found on my iphone camera, monocromatic images- a yellow wall, a blue wall, a brown tile, an orange blanket, a red shirt, the black of a room with the lights turned off, the white of a lightbulb. I didn't teach him these skills. He self taught through trial and error.