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The Writing Mother

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Very sorry, I seem to be suffering from lack o' bloggin'.

We've had a busy month (uh, I mis-typed and said busty month... very odd). M. is finally settling down at Kindergarten. Could this be becuase I have been going to kindergarten early many days a week and just hanging out with him? I think so.

I am giving kudos to myself becuase I knew deep down he'd have a little bit of a hard time at Kindergarten. Hence my desire to plan E. 'just right' so that I'd be home with her on Maternity Leave while he was starting school.

I can't help but feel that I've done something to create such a 'willful' child, but 'they' say that children's temperaments are set from birth. But still... surely I've fostered this spirit. I'm currently reading "Raising Your Spirited Child" and have been working on thinking about his actions in a positive light.

In stead of 'willful' I'm trying 'certain of desires'... instead of 'stubborn' I'm trying 'sure of self'... yeah, it kind of sounds like bull pucky to me too... BUT, I have found that when he is behaving in a contrary manner that I can look at his behaviour and notice that if he were an adult, this would be GOOD behaviour.

I mean, don't I want a child that sticks to his guns under peer pressure? Don't I want a goal-oriented child even if I have to put up with a little 'goal=extra dessert' time for a while?

Thankfully, I have a wonderful Kindergarten teacher and we've devised a reward system for him. She puts stickers in his communication book each day to let me know how he has been. Each sticker translates to a certain amount of TV and video game time. (15 minutes) The maximum he can get is 6 stickers.

Also, we've pin-pointed that his problems usually occur after 11 am, so I've been heading to the school a little early (he gets out at 11:40) and sitting in the classroom, usually just observing. I will be volunteering in the classroom, but for now it's a little difficult with a 4 month old. The teacher said I can just bring her along, but she naps at 9:30 just about every morning... and if I drag her out of the house I'll just end up with a different cranky child at school.

But we're working on it!

Yesterday I realized how far M. has come in other areas. I remember stressing a year ago because the child seemed terrified of the pool. I started sticking him in classes (because he doesn't really like it when I try to teach him, I'm too forceful....) and last night for the first time in the bathtub he stuck his whole face in the water and had me count to five while he held his breath.

This is a big step for him! I'm so happy! Sure, some of you may be saying 'small things...' but he doesn't do anything without it being his idea and his is very cautious with new things, it really has taken a year for him to be able to do this.

That trait, of being cautious of new experiences, is apparently a trademark of The Spirited Child. In the book they have a test for you to take to see how spirited your child is. M. scored fairly high.

Then there's another test to see how spirited a parent you are.

Surprise, surprise... I scored much higher than my son.

Spirited child, spirited parent. Yikes!

As my family would say: Tree. Apple.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 9:52 AM

At 4:03 PM, Blogger Patti said...

That book is practically my bible, it's what keeps me sane on the bad days. I have two "spirited" boys, but many times they are moving in opposite directions. Throw in some ADD (Mom!) and you have a Nut House.

And yet, we survive, thrive, even. We took school out of the equation by homeschooling, but you do what's best for your family.

And you will not only survive, you will all thrive!


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