Watching for the Water to Boil

There is alot (too much??) pressure on young kids to have it all together. When I was ten, I didn’t have to remember what books to bring to which class. We sat in Mrs. Gibson’s class at these table groupings and did our work from there. Mrs. Gibson was a very progressive teacher for those days. We didn’t sit in rows, and we had group projects. I recall liking them. My supplies were in a cubby immediately underneath the part of the table I sat by. And I don’t remember books. We didn’t bring them home. I think they were passed out at each class. Yeah, that’s right.

Ten year olds today switch classes and get yelled at (at least that’s how they feel) when they don’t bring the correct notebook or textbook. The teacher is frustrated because she keeps handing out additional pencils, since they don’t travel with the kids. This is, of course, to prepare them for the next year when this forgetfulness won’t be tolerated. Using this logic, parents better expect fully formed adults out of their pre-schooler because that is how they will be expected to act as adults.

My fifth grader son is having a devil of a time with this remembering thing. He has been reminded about a zillion times. The teacher asked me to emphasize the importance to him. I did. This has been a source of conflict. Then someone (not the teacher) told me that he is still a little kid. She is right. Makes me think about what pediatricians always tell us when we are potty-training our babies, “He won’t go to college still in diapers.” Some things take time. Some people take more time than others. I am switching to observing and offering some atta-boys. He will remember his pencils better when he is ready. He has some time to learn to be an adult.

Do you know where I put my cell phone?

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