‘Boy Energy’ Is A Good Thing — I Think

8 Mar

Sundays at church I look around and it seems most toddlers Reid’s age are being quietly held by their parents, napping on their parent’s shoulder or silently popping Cheerios. Reid is up talking to people sitting around us, playing peek-a boo and constantly moving from the floor to the seats.

I wouldn’t say he misbehaves. He’s just busy and active.

My wife and I were talking about preschool with a good friend of ours who’s an elementary school teacher. She said it will teach him skills he needs, “like sitting still.”

Being an only child not in day care, I worry about Reid learning social skills. Like every parent,  I worry about him learning colors, letters and numbers.

I don’t really care if my two-year-old can’t sit still.

Reid is an active, curious, slightly mischievous little boy. I think that’s awesome.

I’m concerned how he’ll do in school with this personality though. I’m further concerned that my nurturing these wild ways will put me in conflict with his classroom teachers.

A friend of mine with two boys of her own, posted an article on her Facebook page from the Toronto Star about a Canadian educator’s views on “boy energy.” My friend, Kris-Ann, blogged about her decision whether public school or a Montessori education is best for her son with special needs.

I’m glad more parents and educators are looking at the unique challenges of educating young boys. It’s a struggle to harness Reid’s energy and make sure he is developing and learning new things. But I think it’s also a lot of fun as his parent.

We review letters floating in his tub many nights. Through the splashes and pouring water over his head he’ll repeat “D, makes Da sound, like dog.”

I understand things will change when Reid gets into a classroom setting. I don’t want his behavior to be a disruption. But I hope he stays active and engaged with people around him. I don’t want to screw that up.

Do you have concerns about how your son will do – is doing — in preschool? Any elementary school teachers want to weigh in?

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One Response to “‘Boy Energy’ Is A Good Thing — I Think”

  1. Kris-Ann Race March 9, 2012 at 12:14 am #

    Jim, might I recommend you read the book The Way of Boys by Dr. Anthony Rao. I found it to be really enlightening and think you might relate (btw I remember your post saying you don’t read…try this one). Also, Reid sounds really similar to Max. He’s always listening, always absorbing, always paying attention but is never, ever still. He can tell you the name of any song on the radio and who sings it, he can identify bridges and streets, but is never, ever still. If it weren’t for school, I honestly wouldn’t care. But I just worry that a teacher who has 20+ other kids to worry about isn’t going to “get” that. As for preschool, there are play-based programs that are more interactive. Where my kids go there is no required sitting to learn. They do have circle time, with songs, the calendar etc. but then are allowed to move about the room during choice time. If they want to stand up to do a puzzle, so be it. If you and Chris ever want to chat about it, let me know.

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