Saturday, 30 April 2011

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J Summary (2Y1M25D) - Developing A Sense of Humour

I am teaching J the sound of the letter 'a' and J could say the sound of 'a' as "aaaaaaah apple". These two days, he began to say "aaaaaaahhhh monkey" and looked at me for a reaction. Going along with him, I pretended to look "big-eyed" shocked at the mistake and said to him, "no no no, J it is aaaaaahhh apple!", and he would laugh and laugh and laugh and said "aaaahhh monkey" repeatedly. This went on several rounds for these 2-3 days. This evening, I was actually beginning to worry if I should stop going along with his joke, as he might get confused by his own joke, and truly begin to associate the letter 'a' with monkeys instead of apples!

Then this evening after putting him to bed and getting out of the bedroom, Daddy told me that he could hear from behind the closed door that J was practising hard the alphabet alone in his bedroom and he was practising "aaaaaahhhhhh apple" correctly. I breathed a sense of relief, his joke would not confuse his understanding of the sound of letter 'a' and 'm' after all. He is clear about it, that it is a joke. We were very amused and amazed by J's sense of humour, that he could make fun of us. No doubt when he sees us tomorrow, it would be back to "aaaaahhhhh monkey", my "big-eyed shocked" look and his rolling laughter :-)

J sometimes like to practise his learning during bed time alone in his bed. I am amazed at children's capacity to learn. The Danish education system only starts teaching at the age of 6 years old. From 6 years old and below in the kindergarten, it is just all play and no learning. When I observe J and other toddlers his age, I really think that it is very wrong to think the children cannot learn and play at the same time. They can learn so much and enjoy learning. J (and other toddlers his age) practising alphabets at his bedtime on his own shows that they have a lot of fun learning, thus confirming the theory of Montessori, that children wants to learn, and they have great capacity for learning. If parents in Denmark do not roll up their sleeves and teach the child at home in Denmark, the child not only would be lagging 4-5 years behind all the other children in the world i.e. US, UK, Japen, Singapore, China, etc., but the saddest part is that the child would have lost 4-5 years of learning opportunities, because there is no formal learning in the Danish kindergartens. The Singaporean system, on the other hand, tends to load too much into a little toddler's head. Oh I wish that these two systems could come together in the middle and it would be perfect!

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