Yesterday Mrs D told me that she was going to move him up to Fairy Penguin numeracy level after the holidays. Apparently, as well as showing her how well he can read, now he is also starting to show her what he can do with numbers, and comprehension, and vocabulary, and all sorts of other domains as well. Which is a HUGE relief.
Once he finds his level at school, I know he will be happier and more engaged with is learning, and (hopefully) that will set the pattern for the rest of his educational life. I feel (still) so amazingly lucky that we found Mrs D, and that she is working so hard to bring out his best.
She mentioned that she thinks he may be “gifted”. That label leaves a very bad taste in my mouth for several reasons. Mostly because it is used by parents to brag about how special their kid is. Every kid is the most special kid in the world, and labeling them can be really destructive. The only label a kid needs is “loved”. The other worry I have is that children labelled as gifted are sometimes difficult for schools to handle, and difficult for other kids to relate to. I’d welcome input from other parents (or teachers!) on this, but as long as Squish has a teacher that is able to keep him engaged, I don’t see the need to define him.
Of course I have always thought he was gifted – I thought it was a miracle the first time he smiled (almost a week after the books said it should happen), when he crawled for the first time most of his cohort were already walking, and when he walked they were already climbing fences. But I saw what he put into each step, I watched his little face as he concentrated on balancing, and I celebrated his effort. I never felt sad that his milestones were “behind” others, because they were his, and he is perfect to me. Every little milestone, every achievement has been amazing in my eyes, because I am his mother, because we made him, because the sun shines when he smiles and the world cracks when he is hurt.
Yesterday we had some great car conversations. We’ve been talking about viruses, and why you need to cover your mouth when you cough, so you don’t share the germs and make others sick. He asked, “mama, how did the first person get sick?”. Between us, we decided that mutation of viruses was probably the culprit, but I had to think on my feet.
He also asked about “the bit of you that isn’t your body”, and what happens to that after you die. I said that there were many different theories. He said, “maybe you go into another body and become a different person”. He discovered reincarnation!
And then – “mama, I know how you turn left and right, but I’m going to need to know how you make the car go backwards and forwards”. So he can complete world domination ahead of schedule 😉