I just met a young mother of two girls. The oldest is around the same age as my son – two and a half years old. She told me about the complain from school regarding her daughter. The main complain was due to her inability to concentrate and memorize the school works.
I was speechless – both to the fact that this toddler is being ‘diagnosed’ by the teacher of being unable to concentrate and by the reality that I had to deal with such issue against this young child in front of me.
I asked further on the school works mentioned. Apparently, at Nursery A, all students have to memorize and understand the concept of numbers from 1-20! They are ought to understand and shall make no mistakes when the numbers are presented in random. It was not merely memorizing, because the students, or should I say, these toddlers have to decode the symbols (of numbers) into the right numbers. If they fail to do so, they have to attend an extra 15-minute session after school.
One conclusion from me: it is too much for that little girl.
When I look at my son, I could see the differences. He is not at formal school, he doesn’t have the capacity to understand numbers bigger than 5 and simply, he uses all his time to play.
Despite the questions and ‘warm’ advice to send my son to school, I shake off the dust. What do we need to pull out from a toddler beside the reality that they are doing work when they are playing? How do I send the understanding that play is not merely a non-sense, but it is a serious work for children?
I am not an expert, because I do see the need to learn continuously. Therefore, I keep myself occupied to read, to seek out and to learn more on children development, children education and parenting. One important thing that I learn from Maria Montessori is the importance to let the children lead their way and we ought to follow it.
I hope you have a lovely weekend!