Studies have always been very important to me. Not that I always loved to study but getting good grades were always important. I was always amongst the top of the class and while I was not the competitive kind but I knew where I stood and always wanted to stay there. My mum often got irritated why I didn’t bother to work harder to be ‘the topper’ but I was content where I was.
So it was very natural for me to make sure Daughter has a designated study time from early on. I think we started to sit with books and scribble and read while she sat patiently around the time she was 3.5 years. This was a time when she was going to daycare for about 4 hours. She had enough playtime and park time in the evenings. I really saw no harm in sitting for 20 minutes every other day. From early on she knew just like we have fun and play, we also need to sit and study.
Now Daughter was a very early reader and as much as I would like to take credit for it, I honestly didn’t do much. It was a ritual for me to read to her ever since she was a few days old. And we read lots of books. So by the time she was 2.5, she would even want me to read labels- toothpaste, face wash, body wash, etc. These were particularly her favorites because she would sit on the potty and have me read away to glory. Then there were times of grocery shopping and she would sit in the cart and read food labels, etc. I know there are a lot of our friends who thought I taught her how to read but I can honestly tell you she taught herself reading. Not because it made us happy but because she loves to read.
Anyway this post is not about her reading. She is in 2nd Grade and makes very good grades. Her teacher challenges her all the time in reading, comprehension and maths. She’s also in the gifted program. I’ve always heard raving reviews from all her teachers. Now we’ve never put her in the kumon classes or other such programs inspite of being pushed by numerous friends. I honestly never felt the need.
But even at 8 my Daughter is very aware that I’m pretty serious about her work. I absolutely lose it when I see sloppy work. I’m ok if she makes mistakes but do not like to see carelessness. I don’t hesitate to praise and I’m very generous in giving compliments but I don’t mince my words during criticisms either. And there are times I find I’m harsh.
I often see parents who are chilled about studies and feel so bad about the tight ship that I run. But in my defense all I can say is I strongly believe that you need good grades if you want to do good in life. By good I mean professionally and financially. While I know these elementary level grades aren’t important, I just want to instill the perseverance and hard work in her. I have seen numerous examples of kids who did excellent in school and some how withered away during college. While there are those who were average and are doing exceptionally well now. So you just need to work hard and there isn’t a substitute to working hard. It’s important in every aspect of life. And that’s the only lesson I really want her to learn.
Today I was talking to a friend and that’s how this whole thing came about. Am I becoming one of those obnoxious moms that I hated during school ?? Do I need to listen when she says no to doing extra homework ?? But then again to my defense I want to say she has no homework days too !! Do I need to stop nagging ?? How do all of you deal with the education scenario?? Am I the only one who has these kind of questions ??!!