Monday, September 02, 2013

Parenting Month 34: Where did mommy and daddy go?

Bahia Honda State Park
Who is not in the picture?
This month's grand event. Mommy and daddy took a vacation without T. For five days! This was not our first time without him, but the last time was only for two nights. So we are increasing the length :-) Now, we like T and all, and we even took a vacation with him earlier in the summer. But it is nice to have a few days without him. And healthy for him. Based on reports from grandma and grandpa, he did all right. But he was happy to see us when we got back :-)

In other news, he is continuing to be more talkative.  All of the teachers at the day care report he talks to them (he used to only talk to a chosen few).  And he interacts more with the other kids.  A day care highlight:  the teachers drew a hopscotch grid, and he ended up teaching the other kids what to do on it.  Another highlight.  The day care got some new toys including kitchen toys.  And the teachers did not know what some of them were.  Until T showed them what a steamer and buns were for.

Mommy is starting tiger parenting in earnest.  Yes, we thought that was already going on, but now we are looking at future kindergarden, and what it takes to get in.  In particular, we are thinking about getting him in earlier (because he missed the cutoff) so he would be one of the youngest kids in the year instead of one of the oldest.  In the U.S., the cutoff date has been creeping earlier and earlier over the years, because parents have been trying to hold their kids back and entering later.  So this means doing what New York parents all do and prepare the kids for the tests.  (supposedly the tests are cultural neutral tests of intelligence.  After taking a look at some sample questions, I strongly disagree with this assessment.  It is biased towards kids whose parents prepare them to take cultural neutral tests of intelligence.  Because I cannot imagine a four year old understanding these questions unless that child has seen those types of questions before and knows how to answer them. i.e. they have to already know the form of answer that goes with that form of question]. Daddy is slightly amused by the whole thing actually, and has taken advantage of it by buying games.  Starting with dominoes (which are good for matching and counting) and Bananagrams (think scrabble tiles without the board or points).  Since mommy does not play games, daddy thinks he can raise a playing partner.

This is how you make a truck
Reading instructions on how to make a truck
The other new thing is going to the Kids workshops at Home Depot and Lowe's.  While they are advertised as for 5 and up, in reality younger kids often go as well.  After much observation of grandpa and daddy over the summer, and practice using Handy Manny and the Melissa and Doug tool box, T can reliably hit a nail on the head with a hammer, which is the principle skill required for these kids workshops.  The only problem is that he does not have the strength for it, so it takes a lot of hits (and daddy is there to finish off the nail).  Between both stores (Home Depot is once a month, Lowe's is twice a month) we figure this means an activity and a toy two weekends a month. :-)

Next month.  Back to school for mommy and daddy.  Lots of time with grandma and grandpa at their new home.  And more talking and interaction at day care.
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