Much as I love Bible studies because of the fellowship and the chance to dig into God’s word much more deeply than I could ever do on my own, I have to drag myself around to do all the housewifey things the next day. Mornings are especially difficult since I am already not a morning person. I have decided to take it easy and declare Wednesdays as non-cooking days and not expect too much of myself when it comes to home-schooling (what home-schooling??…zzz…).
Sometimes I wonder…many kids at my younger boy’s age are already in preschool learning stuff. He’s still staying at home. On days when I am really tired I find it hard to engage him in a conversation. Trying to teach him something in a structured manner is even harder. So what did I do this morning on a typical weary Wednesday? After seeing gor gor off to school, we went to the supermarket to do some grocery shopping. We went home after that but on the way, the little boy had a bit of time at the roof garden walking up and down little steps. At home, the little boy had a bath and breakfast. We did laundry together and then walked to a nearby coffeeshop to buy lunch and dinner. On our way home we saw Nenek seated alone beside a bench, so we went over and the little boy had a chat with her. Nenek is an elderly wheelchair-bound Indian lady whom we often meet at our block and is a familiar figure in our neighborhood. We went back upstairs and I placed the little boy in his crib with some toys and a book while I had an early lunch and hung up the laundry to dry… Totally exhausted…
What did I teach him? What did he learn? I guess it’s something that I taught gor gor when we were plucking longbeans some time back…
Ma: Do you think I can pluck all the longbeans by myself?
Gor gor: Yes
Ma: Then why am I asking you and didi to help me to pluck the longbeans?
Gor gor: To teach us about life (No, he didn’t come up with this answer by himself. It was something that I told him during a previous longbean plucking session)
Didi practiced going to pee, washing his hands, feeding himself, putting on and taking off sandals by himself— learning self-care. He helped with the housework— learning to be a responsible member of the family. He practiced operating zips on the laundry bags, walking up and down the stairs by himself (being a preemie meant that he is susceptible to developmental delays and gross motor skill is one of them)— developing motor skills. He had some time to interact with someone who is of a different generation, gender and race from him— developing communication, social skills and a heart for people who are different from him. He had some time to play quietly by himself— developing independent play. Hopefully, he also learnt that food does not drop from the sky :P. All throughout the morning activities, I tried my best to point out the surroundings and talk about them when I could, tired as I was… like the plants, flowers, the Stop sign…So I guess what he learnt this morning is aptly summed up in one word: life.
On days like this I have to be even more prayerful and realize that I need to rely on God to be a mother that brings glory to Him. It’s so easy to slip into auto-pilot mode. Still praying that God will grant me the strength, patience and wisdom I need to teach my boys about Him and the world around them. Everyday. By God’s grace.
** Dear stay-home mummies, don’t feel too bad about not being able to teach your kids in a structured manner (i.e. classroom-like setting and following some syllabus) because you are just too tired or there isn’t time to sit down and teach. A principal of a preschool once told me that young kids learn best through incidental learning. Teach them when you are doing things with them or when you are all on the go. Sitting down at a table and learning doesn’t sit well with many tots and some preschool kids.