Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Accidentally in love

While browsing Goodwill one day, these silver napkin rings caught my eye. They were the kind of purchase I carried around for awhile, completely unsure if I was going to buy it or not.

Once I got them home I fell in LOVE with them, and I am so glad I bought them.

They are meant to be little picture frames, but I thought some vintage fabric scraps would be sweet in them.

I can also seem them filled with tiny embroideries, a little cross stitch, a handmade monogram, or a super tiny papercut. Sweet!
Right now they are kicking around my china cabinet where I can enjoy them.

I did a little googling, and it looks like you can actually buy some from here . They have so many awesome little frames on that website. I could go crazy there.
When we were looking for a new preschool for Jack I visited one of the Montessori schools and while I hadn't expected to love their school, I really did. Such a calm place and I could really see Jack growing there.

Sadly, I didn't think it would be enough "friend" time for him, so I went with a different preschool.

But their wonderful activities stuck with me.

This morning I decided to have Jack work on a Montessori math activity - addition with beans. At first I gave him simple addition strips of paper, you know the type, 2 + 2. He immediately declared those too easy and started shouting out the answers, no beans needed.

So I dug around and found harder problems (on a second grade worksheet!!). This time things like 51 + 8 and 72 + 12. Again he declared them too easy, no beans needed, and started adding the numbers in his head. (I knew it wasn't going to be super challenging since he has started toying with long division already, but I had hoped it would at least hold his interest a little.)

I have given up for the moment and he is playing with Stars Wars legos.

Moments like this really do make me raise an eyebrow though. I really believe in letting Jack just "discover" learning, and I never push him to do anything like that.

But I must admit a small part of me is a little worried.

What on earth is he going to do when he starts kindergarten a full year from now?

It will at least be interesting I suppose. LOL

P.S. I am fully aware that some people will say we should be challenging him more. You know, send him to college already or something. (You laugh, but people do say strange things sometimes when they see him doing something unexpected.) I had an uber crappy childhood, so I am totally confident in my decision to just let him play away the days while he is small. There is plenty of time for college once he reaches the ripe old age of 12. Hahaha.

12 comments:

  1. I went through the same thing when I was little...and like you, my childhood ended up rather badly. Ultimately, I think the best thing you can do for a kid like Jack is to encourage and support his interests. He will learn...he's proven that to you already!

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  2. Such a smart little dude! Love the picture frames, they are adorable!

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  3. First, thanks for the heads up on the Martha stuff at Big Lots - I racked up today.

    Second, there are some really great Montessori sites aimed at Montessori teachers that might give you some ideas - I'm sure many of them would need to be adapted upwards. I'll try to pull them off my Google reader & send them to you.

    And third, you are SO smart to let him enjoy being a kid. You can always cross the academics bridge when it becomes an issue, and quite frankly, letting him read & play around with math at his own level is probably exactly the right thing to do.

    :)

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  4. Oh yes let him be a child. Let him lead with what he wants to know - encourage him in everything but let him decide what he wants to learn. Challenge him by all means but let him decide ultimately. That way he won't be put off learning in the future - and I speak as an ex primary school teacher (I taught ages 4, 5 and 6!) You are certainly doing something right :)

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  5. I agree. I wouldn’t rush it either. It could totally backlash, and he could hate learning which would be terrible. It’s great that he is able to grasp the concepts. I think it’s wonderful!

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  6. Those are really cute!!

    What a little smartie! I agree, no rush!

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  7. Super cute napkin rings! and hooray for playing! I'd say just cross the kindergarten bridge when you come to it. I'm sure he's not the first kid going into kindergarten who knows everything they will teach him. Hopefully his teacher will work with you to come up with some good ideas about how to challenge him.

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  8. I do believe in challenging kids, but sometimes I think the easy answer becomes moving them up a grade or skipping grades and I think that is sad. In the end, they just get a year less childhood and another year in the work world. I just heard an ad for a reading program for babies. Can't babies just be babies anymore!? One nice way to challenge bright kids is to learn to play an instrument. That is an unlimited challenge that isn't leveled by age.

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  9. first...love the napkin rings. second...12 sounds about right. why push too early?!

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  10. You're so funny Sarah! Love those adorable little frames -- thanks for the link, you evil woman LOL!

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  11. If you are worried about kindergarten, you might check to see if your area has a Gifted and Talented Magnet School or Program. Such a program exists within one of the elementary schools in our district. Children of all abilities and backgrounds attend the school, but there are special classes and opportunities in place to challenge those students that are ready to tackle higher-level material. Just a thought.

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  12. Anonymous5:02 AM

    I am a kindergarten teacher with 25 years of experience along with being a mother of two "gifted" kids of my own. I want to say you are on the right track for looking out for Jack's childhood. I have seen too many kids pushed because they were bright, Jack will only be a little boy for a very short time, let him enjoy it. He will continue to be bright and much more adjusted if you let him experience all the things little boys should. I can tell through reading your blog that you are tuned in to his needs and will make the best decisions for him. With my own children we found that the arts were great outlets for them, music and dance, etc. If there was one message I could get across to my kindergarten parents it would be that childhood slips by in the blink of an eye so enjoy every moment and let your children be children. I love the saying that "childhood should be a journey and not a race". You keep up the good work with Jack and continue to look out for his best interests and you will raise a healthy, happy, well-adjusted boy!

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Hi there. What say you?