I always love, and agree with, what Laura has to say and am always so pleased to share it! It is a great reminder to me to be so careful with my 4 year old. I need to remember that learning doesn’t always (possibly rarely) come from instruction and when I sometimes feel uninvolved in her learning and feel pressure to get involved, I should listen to my gut and go read a book or something because she’s learning more pottering around on her own than I can probably offer. I am just about always available to read a book and (less often) if she wants to play a ‘Jolly Phonics’ or ‘Biff and Chip’ game on the computer but the rest of the time, I can safely leave her to her own devices safe in the knowledge she’s learning what she needs to.
My daughter started preschool a month before she turned three. She was too young. The facility was wonderful, the teachers kind, the activities entirely age-appropriate but she resisted the structure. It didn’t make sense to her that she was asked to learn color words she already knew. Or that she had to perform with her classmates at the annual holiday show after she’d already practiced the song and movement pieces well beyond her boredom tolerance. She did what she was told but she wasn’t happy.
I know why I was eager for her to start. Pregnant with her brother, I felt nauseated all the time and hoped preschool would feed her active mind. Or perhaps because she had been chronically ill nearly all of her first three years. Now she was finally better and I suspect, unconsciously, I signed her up to assure myself she was as healthy as any…
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