Friday, October 13, 2006

Baby's first class

On Wednesday Oct.11.06, I took my child to his first class – “Gym for tots”. It is a class where kids and their parents get together in one room filled with interesting play items (a tunnel leading to a play house filled with colored balls for example). Kids indulge in playtime that is then followed by some music time where everyone sings children’s songs sitting in a circle. I keep telling myself that I am not going to be the kind of parent who will overdose the child with an assortment of classes that fills up all the free time and doesn’t leave much room for just being a child. My friend says “There is so much peer pressure…I visit my friends and relatives and their children are in so many classes and know so much, I feel nervous if I don’t do the same for my child”. I think of what she said when she called me while driving her five year old to a Kumon class. Will I be able to subscribe to what my husband believes is a good thing – benign neglect? He says we should nurture what the child enjoys doing and provide the environment for him to learn but not push him. I agree with him and I too believe in that. Yet, when I look at the assortment of classes offered even for a child as young as one plus, I waver a little and wonder where to draw the line. The advertisements are meant to lure you to bring your child in and tap the genius – just in case! I tell myself I will not subject him to unnecessary pressure which I certainly did not enjoy myself and I do strongly believe that it kills creativity when you leave no breathing room for a child to just be. Well, even just ten years from now I hope I look back on this post to see how I have faired in this respect! My child may have more to say on that topic then! :)

5 comments:

Tharini said...

Its great to keep the classes thing in perspective. Too much of anything, is nto good. But in this country, we sometimes have to seek out these classes as a way to provide a ground for our kids to socialise also. We don;t have the constant interaction of grandparents, relatives and neighbours, except perhaps on weekends when we get together. So this is a good break, esp for a stay at home mom.

A really wonderful class that I enjoyed much with Akhil during his 1st and 2nd year was Kindermusik. They have music cd's that you can take home and it helped on many a day to feed my finicky toddler.

noon said...

Yeah - definitely helps for the kid to play with other kids. I do have the free class coupon for kindermusic but I figured I would wait for a bit on that since the city also offers some similar music classes which are much cheaper. Although sometimes it becomes a problem for me while feeding him - he keeps listening to the music intently and shaking his head but won't swallow the food in his mouth until the song is over...But at some point I do want to check out Kindermusik.

itchingtowrite said...

all depends on the parents' comfort & the child's liking. liked ur post on single moms- v thought provoking. and teh meal time ritual is similar to mine.. old mc donald is their favourite

the mad momma said...

well i tend to agree with the benign neglect theory. but for mothers at home you need a break from your child and sending to a class is a good way to get it. also helps that they get to interact with other kids.

Usha said...

It is tough to make "the right choice" in these things until the child is old enough to exercise his/her choice.
I am a subscriber to your husband's belief too.