There are reasons why creative people are creative. We want to express ourselves, we want to share something with the world, we want to touch other people’s lives – and we love the satisfaction of standing next to what we have made and being proud of it. Positive feedback motivates us to carry on and do even better.
Yes, that is what I felt like standing next to my son – who I had some hand in shaping – as his keyworker at pre-school praised his awe inspiring academic abilities.
The Boy has been at pre-school for a term and a half now and last week was my first ‘review’ meeting with the teacher assigned to keep an eye on him. The idea was to share what they had observed of him and talk about what he could work on next.
I was prepared to hear that he was above average in his mathematical abilities. His teacher was amazed that he could tell you which number came before and after another number, that he could recognise at a glance that there were five objects on a table (2 or 3 is normal for his age, apparently) and that he recognises shapes and numbers in the world around him.
You barely know the half of it, I wanted to say.
I have bragged about this before and I am sure you are all rolling your eyes now, but even since my last post on the topic he has done more amazing things. He has started adding up, telling me at random moments (on the toilet) that 2 and 3 make 5 and that 6 and 3 make 9. Then the other day at about 6am we were playing with the Duplo, which somehow turned into a multiplication lesson. Before I knew where I was he was making towers of equal height, counting the number of towers and how many blocks that made in total. Also, on a trip into town with Daddy he pointed at the interestingly shaped paving and said: “It’s a hexagon! It has six corners and six sides!”
The teacher also reported he was well ahead on reading skills: he knows most of the sounds the letters make as well as the names of the letters.
Again, I could add more amazing feats: The Boy recognises all of the names of the other children in his class as well as his own when he sees them written down on labels around the school, as well as the names of all our favourite supermarkets on pots of jam and freezer bags. He has started recognising words in books and wanting to copy them with his letter puzzle.
Besides all this the teacher said the Boy was very musical, had amazing recall and picked things up very quickly.
What I wasn’t prepared for was his top astounding skill.
Apparently, most 3 or even 4 year olds don’t cut around things, just through them. Who knew? That same morning the Boy had been crying because he couldn’t perfectly cut around each petal of a flower and asked me to do the tricky bits where the scissors turn the corner. After the review I made sure the Boy knew how clever he was to even follow the petals at all.
So what does he need to work on? You’ll all be pleased to hear that socially and behaviourally the Boy is just your average 3 year old, who does as he is told for five seconds before testing out if the embargo on running indoors has been lifted yet. He has plenty to learn still at pre-school about being part of a group, respecting the rules and doing as he is asked.
While we talked, the Boy was helpfully stacking up all the little chairs, obviously getting straight on his action plan.
I looked at my bright little boy, bursting with pride. “Look what I made!” I was thinking. “Isn’t he great?”
Obviously, I am Loud n Proud… If you are too, link up! It’s not too late.
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