We (kind of) jokingly say that Careena is “advanced”. She walked before nine months, spoke in full sentences at right around two years old, knew many of the colors, and could count to 12 (random I know). She pays close attention to everything and understands so much it is truly incredible. Careena always smiled and laughed at just about anything or anyone since she was a tiny baby. The older she gets, the more she amazes us as a person, not just a child.
Of course we cannot help but compare Hailee to her big sister. Hailee also walked early – about 10 months, and is starting to speak more clearly and putting words together since 18 months. She is a little more reserved than Careena. Rather than smiling, she often seems more like she is analyzing you, her surroundings, and the situation. Once you engage her though, she is a very happy girl! She also seems to be learning quickly and we love seeing the girls interact. We are hoping Careena will only teach her the “good stuff,” but who are we kidding!? 😉
I believe it is human nature to think your children are special, cute, smart…advanced. You think these things because you want them to be happy, successful, and well-adjusted. You want the best for them – always. And of course the world is one big competition to some degree, isn’t it? I meant that last thought a bit jokingly. I don’t conscientiously think that way, but on second thought, I probably do see the world that way.
Heather and I are often discussing what we could or should be doing to help the girls learn. How can we continue to challenge and stimulate them? We are not trained professional teachers or child development experts. I would like to think we know our limitations and strengths and weaknesses in this area. So what is our role as parents in our children’s educational development?
I think it is to do whatever we can to help and guide them in their learning throughout their lives. For some of us, that means we will need to seek the help, guidance, and opinions of professionals and even other parents when we find ourselves searching for what to do next. We are not the first (or last) parents to want to ensure the best support and opportunities for our children. So we do our own on-line research, ask friends and family, and learn from some of you through your posts and links.
I am sure it is only going to get more difficult the older they get. That is why it is so important to us to be educating ourselves on how we can best help the girls. We buy (mostly) “educational” toys, watch educational television shows, spend time with them playing with blocks and puzzles, etc. Don’t get me wrong, we also have plain old ‘fun time’ tickling them and chasing them around the house… I guess being engaged with them and being conscientious of what kind of activities and challenges they are presented with is the basic role we have as parents.
This is a life-long responsibility that I will willingly and gratefully accept! But then again, that’s…
This Dad’s View
How do you ensure your child continues to learn? To be challenged but not frustrated? What resources do you recommend for parents?