1. SPS Accounts:
    Do you find yourself coming back time after time? Do you appreciate the ongoing hard work to keep this community focused and successful in its mission? Please consider supporting us by upgrading to an SPS Account. Besides the warm and fuzzy feeling that comes from supporting a good cause, you'll also get a significant number of ever-expanding perks and benefits on the site and the forums. Click here to find out more.
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
You are currently viewing Boards o' Magick as a guest, but you can register an account here. Registration is fast, easy and free. Once registered you will have access to search the forums, create and respond to threads, PM other members, upload screenshots and access many other features unavailable to guests.

BoM cultivates a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. We have been aiming for quality over quantity with our forums from their inception, and believe that this distinction is truly tangible and valued by our members. We'd love to have you join us today!

(If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us. If you've forgotten your username or password, click here.)

Kindergarten is Hard - for Parents

Discussion in 'Alley of Dangerous Angles' started by Aldeth the Foppish Idiot, Sep 18, 2012.

  1. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

    Joined:
    May 15, 2003
    Messages:
    12,434
    Media:
    46
    Likes Received:
    249
    Gender:
    Male
    My 5-year old son started kindergarten this year. I knew Jack was likely in the minority, but apprently, he is highly unusual in that he got to stay home for the first 5 years of his life. It seems like all the other children in his class have gone to daycare. There are certain things you learn in daycare that Jack simply isn't aware of.

    Most of them are pretty simple. For example, the first week we got a call from the teacher saying that Jack often times isn't following directions she gives to the class. We found this pretty odd, because Jack is usually very good at listening and following directions. So we asked him about it. He said, "She wasn't looking at me, and she didn't say my name, so how was I supposed to know she was talking to me?" So we had to explain that when she is talking, it's usually to the whole class, and it would take forever if she had to give you and your 18 classmates individual instructions. So that got straightened out.

    Then there was the whole issue of him thinking he couldn't use the gymnasium equipment, because he didn't have "tennis shoes". To Jack, who only refers to the shoes on his feet as sneakers, didn't realize they were synonymous terms. Five year olds interpret everything literally, and so to Jack, "tennis shoes" are shoes that you wear specifically for the purpose of playing tennis - or apparently using the gym equipment. We got that straightened out.

    We had another instance this week. Two days a week, my wife does tutoring in the evening, so I'm with Jack those nights. And so I do the folder. (It's been like 30 years, so maybe I'm just forgetting, but I'm pretty sure I didn't have a "folder" that I had to give to my parents every night when I was in elementary school.) Anyway, one of the things in the folder was a "color by number" page, which had a comment by the teacher that Jack used the wrong color for some of the numbers. It was a picture of a gingerbread man, because they had just read the corresponding story that day.

    Now, Jack has been doing color by number since he's 3. He can identify any number up to two digits in length, and his basic reading skills should allow him to read most of the words on the page. Of course, reading shouldn't even be required, because the word is written in the color. For example, Jack can read the word "red", but even if he couldn't since it's printed in red ink, he could probably figure it out. Similarly, one of the other colors on the list is purple, and I don't think he could read that, but since it's printed in purple, he should be able to figure it out.

    As an aside, one of the things I didn't like, is that they give you a supply list that you are supposed to get your kid for the first day of school, and one of the things on that supply list if crayons. However, all of the supplies and lumped together in a community pool, so even though there are undoubtedly kids whose parents don't purchase the supplies they still have access to them. This becomes important for what happens next.

    So I look at the gingerbread man picture, and he's wearing a bowtie, and the directions clearly indicate it should be colored red, whereas Jack colored it green. I asked him why he did that. His reply was:

    All of the other kids at my table were using the red crayons in the bin, so I said, 'f--- it", and colored it green because no one was using a green crayon.

    Wait a minute, you said "f--- it" in school?

    No Dad. That's a bad word. You're not allowed to say it in school. And Mommy and Grandma get mad when I say it too, so I don't say it around them. But you, Poppy, and Uncle Zack don't seem to mind, so I figured it was OK.

    (That was actually a fair point, so I let it slide.) OK, but if the directions say to color it red, you should color it red.

    I don't think you see my point Dad.

    Really? What's your point?

    You have to color the gingerbread man brown like it says there, because all gingerbread men are brown. There's no such thing as a green gingerbread man. And you have to color the sun yellow beacuse the sun is always yellow. But ties don't have to be red, so you don't have to color the tie red.

    (At this point it occurs to me that if he was doing this color by nubmer at home, before going to school, and had said the same thing to me, I likely would have agreed. There's no rule that says bowties have to be red.)

    OK, but the drections say to color it red, so you should do that.

    I already told you there were no red crayons left. You know that I know my numbers and colors. What's the big deal? (Another fair point.)

    Because your teacher doesn't know that. And I'm sure there's a lot of kids in your class that don't know their numbers and colors, and so the teacher asked you to do this to see which kids know their numbers and colors, and which ones don't. Your teacher probably thinks you don't know your numbers and colors now.

    But you can tell her that I do.

    (At this point, I'm getting exasperated. And it's my own damn fault, because this is how we raised him. We taught him it's OK to think for yourself, and you don't have to go along with something just because someone else is doing it. Now, he goes to school, and I'm telling him to be a conformist. What makes it worse is that there's nothing wrong with his train of thought. He explained his reasoning to me, and I can see why it makes total sense from his point of view.)

    So I just said, the teacher is trying to figure out which kids are smart, and which ones need to learn their numbers and colors, so the next time she asks you to do a color by number, could you please do what it says on the paper?

    What if everyone is using the red crayons again?

    You can either wait, or ask the teacher for a red crayon. Can you do that?

    Sure.

    This is a long winded way of saying I think I'm in for a long freakin' year. At least we decided against sending him to Catholic school.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2012
    T2Bruno likes this.
  2. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2000
    Messages:
    10,357
    Media:
    40
    Likes Received:
    224
    Gender:
    Male
    IMO that was the wrong way to go. If you've taught Jack to think for himself why discourage that now just because of some idiotic color by numbers tie? I mean really, as you say he is thinking clearly and has great reasons for deviating from the script, why force him into the conformist line? I think it would have been better to write a note back to the teacher explaining why he chose to do what he did.
     
  3. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

    Joined:
    May 15, 2003
    Messages:
    12,434
    Media:
    46
    Likes Received:
    249
    Gender:
    Male
    It's not just because of the color by number tie. I'm trying to teach him that he needs to follow directions. I see his point, and when we go to parent-teacher conferences, we'll talk tot he teacher about it. Yes, it's fine and dandy to think for yourself, and there's nothing wrong with coloring the tie green, provided you knew it should have been red and just didn't have a red crayon handy. I don't really care about that.

    But there is a larger point at work - specifically that if you are given an assignment at school that his directions on it, it's probably a good idea to follow said directions, even if you think there's a better/easier easier way of doing it. I felt that telling Jack he can change the assignment as he sees fit would set an even worse precedent going forward. And telling him that the teacher was trying to find out who knows their numbers and colors I think really stuck with him. I think he realized, oh, it just wasn't for fun - there was a reason for it.

    It wasn't a "YOU BETTER FOLLOW DIRECTIONS!" rant. It was, well, next time you should probably do it the way it says so on the directions.
     
  4. Marceror

    Marceror Chaos Shall Be Sown In Their Footsteps Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

    Joined:
    May 3, 2003
    Messages:
    2,770
    Media:
    226
    Likes Received:
    234
    Gender:
    Male
    I agree that it's critically important for a child to know how to follow directions. There's a difference between being independent and unfocused. A child needs to know how to follow specific instructions accurately. If as parents we aren't going to enforce that, than there's hardly any reason to send a kid to school.

    When a child colors during his free time at home, sure, he can use whatever color his creative instincts tell him to use. There are other more appropriate times to encourage this sort of independence. But at age 5, while in school, do exactly what is asked of you (so that at age 18+, while working at your job, you will be well-equipped to do exactly what your boss asks of you).

    ---------- Added 0 hours, 14 minutes and 38 seconds later... ----------

    My second child is in kindergarten this year. He brings home a lot more homework and projects -- that realistically cannot be done without mom and dad -- than I ever recall having when I was in kindergarten. I'm not even sure that they gave me homework at all back then.

    So yeah, there's a lot of work for mom and dad when kids are in kindergarten. Most of it is rather enjoyable, I find. What I'm finding somewhat ironic is that when my first son, who is mildly autistic, was in kindergarten he absolutely breezed through anything related to the alphabet/reading and math. Our second, who has always been a lot more advanced developmentally than his older brother at the same age, is currently struggling to memorize the alphabet. He's got like 75% of the letters down pat, but the other 25% he routinely mixes up or forgets -- it's not so much a question of intelligence, but of focus, I believe. He'd rather think about other stuff. So now my wife and I are spending a lot of extra time with him each day not only working on his letters, but trying to convince his little mind that such topics are worthy of his full attention.

    It's funny, in a way, that we never had to do this with the "autistic" child. He naturally loved letters, and wanted to know everything he could about them. The same goes for numbers, and math.
     
  5. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2008
    Messages:
    4,096
    Likes Received:
    202
    Gender:
    Male
    :D:D:D:D:D

    You're funny Aldeth...

    Good move keeping him out of Catholic School then, he would be butting heads with teachers/priests/nuns in no time.

    This year we have children in 3k pre-k(2 half days) and 4k pre-k(3 full days). In a Catholic School to boot. Considering we are already paying them a ton of loot for part time schooling, I was amazed what they required us to provide to the school on day 1. It costs us another 450 bucks. and they are talking about an iPad requirement for Kindergarten next year. WTF? We still need daycare so our total costs on daycare/school this year is over 8k. they ahve already told a set of parents that their child is "not ready". the problem wiht private schools is that if your kid is not cut from teh "cookie cutter" mold they want, then your kid is "not ready". They don't support any kids who are lacking, special needs or have issues like ADHD. Feel lucky you are not in Catholic school, they are unbending....
     
  6. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2001
    Messages:
    8,570
    Media:
    88
    Likes Received:
    374
    Gender:
    Male
    Heh, you ain't seen nothin' yet!

    It's a fine line to teach your kids to be independent and creative and all those good things but still need to toe the line at school. You just gave a completely classic example of the torture of this nonsense that really doesn't go away, it just morphs. The schools and teachers all say that they want bright, creative, independent minded students, but what they REALLY want are slightly smart sheep. They want kids who will pick up the lesson quickly, do it accurately, and not give them a headache.

    My son Miles came home with 92 math questions to do that were not difficult, just tedious. It took him an hour or two to do them, and he's one of the quicker kids, so I can only imagine what time was wasted on this tripe globally. A couple of days later he came home with 28 math questions. Except that they were three variable equations and he needed to solve for all 3 and show his work. Again, not hard, just tedious. He asks me, "dad, why do I have to do this crap? I know how to do it, and this is just boring."

    My answer to him is simple: you do it because your grade will go down if you don't.

    We have back to school in two days and you know what I will be asking the math teacher, right? Hey, dumbass math teacher (not literally, but you never know) -- why the hell are you giving so many questions to these kids? If they know their stuff, 5 questions are enough to cement it. If they don't 50 or 500 won't make a difference. So, by giving so many, you are pissing off and boring the kids that can do it, and frustrating the hell out of the kids that can't.

    Let's see what his answer to that is.

    See - it doesn't change, it just morphs.

    It probably doesn't help that he's heard my stories about high school where I never did my homework (as I explained to him, they didn't grade it, so I only ever did the homework that needed to be turned in, which was pretty rare). It's a different world. I was appalled when my kids came home from Kindergarten with homework, no matter how easy. I think that homework is the teachers' cheap way of looking like they are doing something. They give so much of it that it's ludicrous. IMO, homework is there to cement the lessons of the day and to get a head start on the lesson of the following day, but it looks like they are now using it as either a tool of torture or to actually have the kids learn a lot of stuff on their own, which I think should wait until college.

    There you go, poking one of my hot buttons. Damn you Aldeth you pain in the ass. Just wait, it doesn't go away, so 10 years from now you are still going to be complaining about it and I will be watching my daughter graduate from college and chuckling at you (albeit with a much thinner wallet).
     
  7. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2006
    Messages:
    2,662
    Media:
    38
    Likes Received:
    156
    Gender:
    Male
    Thanks for the read Aldeth, that was an amusing (and amusingly told) story. I like the way your kid thinks :D

    I would say that in many jobs the boss tells you he wants a result and it's up to you to figure out how to do it. I don't know how the culture is over at your place, but here it's considered quite normal to talk back to your boss. Thinking for yourself is generally considered an asset, as long as you get the result in the end.

    I'm positive I didn't have homework until I was in 5th or 6th grade. Nor did my parents get a daily evaluation of my activities while I was in kindergarten.
     
  8. Marceror

    Marceror Chaos Shall Be Sown In Their Footsteps Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

    Joined:
    May 3, 2003
    Messages:
    2,770
    Media:
    226
    Likes Received:
    234
    Gender:
    Male
    Sure, this is common in my "world" too. The terminology that comes to mind here is "requirements" vs. "specifications." The boss may come in and say we need to launch a project that will accomplish a, b, c and d. Those items are requirements and are not likely to be negotiable. The subordinates will then need to look at a, b, c and d and figure out how to accomplish them (i.e. they create specifications), and may have a significant amount of leeway to make suggestions and influence the overall design of the solution.

    But even still, the requirements of the project must be achieved or the project will be considered a failure. So again, even in the scenario you suggest a strong level of attention to detail is needed.

    The guys who are good at this (and you'd be surprised how many well educated, professionals aren't) tend to become the team leads/project leads and will probably be paid better than other team members.
     
  9. Gaear

    Gaear ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2006
    Messages:
    1,877
    Media:
    13
    Likes Received:
    180
    :lol:

    It's a bit shocking IMO that they would narc him out on something like that right off the bat. What's next, being sleepy? Sounds like the teacher's problem, honestly, or maybe something they'd bring up to you in a report card or at the semi-annual PTC.

    I don't think I had homework until high school, and I didn't even do it then. :p

    ^ [Ring of truth]

    Seriously, what's to evaluate? You're a six year old with long term dreams of playing games and eating crackers. End of story. I think this the modern-day trend of getting younger and younger kids squared away on career paths by age 1 is idiotic and mainly appeals to the insecurities of the parents and/or associated educational institutions and societies in general. Let them be kids for a few minutes, for god's sake. Life will start sucking soon enough.

    Not to mention the fact that despite all our high hopes for Little Junior, it's quite possible he may end up with a job where they want nothing more from him than to follow directions closely. If your foreman tells you to move crates a, b, and c to location d with the hi-lo and you instead move them to location e due to cleverly 'thinking outside the box,' it's likely you will have the foreman's foot in your ass before long and that he will not rhapsodize over your wonderfulness for thinking creatively. ;)
     
    Blades of Vanatar likes this.
  10. joacqin

    joacqin Confused Jerk Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2001
    Messages:
    6,117
    Media:
    2
    Likes Received:
    121
    Don't you know, school results are down, kids are getting dumber so what we need to do is more of the stuff that has led to our declining results! When it comes to homework that early I would not be surprised if it is some kind of parental demand and not really from the teachers themselves.
     
  11. Mesmero

    Mesmero How'd an old elf get the blues?

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2001
    Messages:
    1,958
    Likes Received:
    12
    I like your kid Aldeth. It seems like a lot of work, but I'm sure if you get the basis right, the rest will become easier. Until they hit puberty probably ;)

    Since we're going into working life and following suit with Marceror's and henkie's comments: when my boss tells me to do something, and gives me precise orders on steps to follow, I still won't blindly follow them. Instead, when I think something can be done better I will try to renegotiate the assignment. For example, if I need a resource that is currently unavailable, but I find another resource that works equally well (like a crayon. Oh wait, I don't work with crayons anymore :D). If my boss says I still need to do it his way (and thus not finish my assignment as quickly as with the other resource), well, I will, he's still the one paying me. I don't know how much of this a five year old would understand, but if he does (and your kid seems smart and talkative enough from your story), can't he just tell the teacher that he needs a red crayon for the tie, but since they're all in use, he thinks he could use a green one instead? That way, he still gets to think for himself, and the teacher knows he knows how to do it. Naturally, if the teacher says he can't, he needs to know to do as the teacher says. And everybody is happy :)

    And at least you're doing a good job teaching your kid how to swear :D And I don't mean teaching him the words, they'll learn that in school and on the playground, but teaching him when and where it's appropriate to swear ;)
     
  12. Marceror

    Marceror Chaos Shall Be Sown In Their Footsteps Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

    Joined:
    May 3, 2003
    Messages:
    2,770
    Media:
    226
    Likes Received:
    234
    Gender:
    Male
    But even here you had to pay close attention to the original requirements, think critically about them, and request some changes. This all still begins with paying close attention to the original details. This is really the advanced class that you're getting into here. :D
     
  13. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2000
    Messages:
    10,357
    Media:
    40
    Likes Received:
    224
    Gender:
    Male
    I see your point, but IMO (and given I don't have kids you can decide how much my opinions matter :) ) it would be better to encourage him to think about the directions and if they don't make sense or there is some obstacle in the way of following the directions, ask the teacher if he can deviate due to the reasons he has. I understand that you don't want him to deviate completely on his own initiative without getting permission, but I think his reasoning and initiative should be encouraged.

    I'll tell you a funny story about my first day in kindergarten: One of the first things we did was write our names on a paper for practicing letters. The teacher corrected (incorrectly as it happens :) ) the spelling of my last name, so when my Mom saw the spelling she told me it was wrong and that I should be spelling it the way I had originally.

    Instead of taking my Mom at her word which you would think would be the natural thing, I said "No! Teacher said that's how it's spelled!" :lol: IIRC my Mom had to get the teacher to tell me the right way to spell my own name, but that may be a false memory :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2012
  14. Mesmero

    Mesmero How'd an old elf get the blues?

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2001
    Messages:
    1,958
    Likes Received:
    12
    Absolutely true.

    Heh, I guess I was a little bit older than kindergarten, I was probably around 6 years old when a teacher tried to correct the way I pronounce my name. We were doing a syllable game, where you had to pronounce your name and clap at every syllable. She thought I didn't get the game, but she added an extra syllable to my name that isn't there :rolleyes: I never liked her :p
     
  15. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

    Joined:
    May 29, 2003
    Messages:
    13,341
    Likes Received:
    95
    Nice story with a fascinating insight into the workings of a child's mind. I wish my 8 year old son could explain to me the reasons why he does things as articulately as your son does.

    But what is this kindergarten you're talking of?

    In New Zealand, kindergarten is something you go to when you're aged 3 so clearly you're talking about something different to that. When you're 5 here you start primary school.

    ---------- Added 0 hours, 2 minutes and 23 seconds later... ----------

    My son does that ALL the time - siding with the teachers view on things instead of me. It's so frustrating.
     
  16. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

    Joined:
    May 15, 2003
    Messages:
    12,434
    Media:
    46
    Likes Received:
    249
    Gender:
    Male
    That's absolutely true. We had considered enrolling Jack in Catholic school, and even went so far as to get him on the initial list of students. We eventually decided against it, but we did send him in the spring for the entrance test. And they are looking for exactly the stuff you point out - is your child lacking in any physical or mental ability - because if he is, they are ill-equipped to make accomodations for such a child.

    That's a lot for a 5-year old's mind to process. It's going to be very difficult for Jack to determine when it is appropriate to deviate from such directions and when not to. I'm certainly not suggesting school is perfect, but in general I would prefer he attempts to do it according to directions first, and only ask if he can change them if he couldn't do it that way.

    In this particular case, he knew what should have been done, and just changed it because it wasn't convenient for him to do it according to directions. So, IMO, it would have been better for him to wait for a red crayon or ask the teacher for one than just coloring it green instead.

    Jack is quite articulate, but we notice he is only so around immediate family and close friends. He needs to get to know you before he opens up. One of the reasons I think he didn't ask the teacher for a red crayon and just did it on his own is because he didn't really want to ask her. It's not that he thinks she isn't a nice teacher (he told us on the first day that "she is 0% mean" - and no, I do not think he has any conceptualization of what a percentage is, but he has a large vocabulary and has evidently picked up the term somewhere), he just prefers to keep everyone at arm's length if he doesn't really know you too well.

    For example, I do NOT think he would have had the same discussion with the teacher as he had with me. In fact, I'm guessing the teacher mentioned to him that he didn't use the correct color, and I'm nearly certain the amount of detail he offered me as to why he didn't do it was not given to the teacher.

    Then you start one year earlier than they do in the US. School at age 3 would be pre-school, or pre-K of age 4. School is required for all children in the US when they turn 6 and they go to 1st grade. Kindergarten isn't required - although almost all children do go - it's the year before you go to 1st grade. Of course, I probably shouldn't use sweeping generalizations. While there are national standards in the US - for example you're required to go to school between ages 6 and 16, and there must be at least 180 school days per school year - there's a lot of variability state to state in terms of when school starts, the age you have to be, etc.

    For example, in Maryland, in order to enroll in kindergarten, your child has to be 5 by August 31st. Jack's birthday is in the middle of August, so he just made it. While I cannot confirm this, it is quite likely he's the youngest kid in the class. I grew up in Pennsylvania, and there the age cut off is December 31st, so it was possible to start kindergarten when you were still 4. (Although I guess there is some logic to selecting December 31st - everyone born in a given calendar year goes to school at the same time.) Then again, there's no perfect date. No matter what date you pick there will be kids who just make it and just miss out.

    There's also a bit of variability of when the school year starts and ends in the US. I know when I was in school, we always started the day after Labor Day (which is the first Monday in September). In Maryland, they start the week before Labor Day. We have family that lives in Seattle, and their kids didn't go back to school until the Monday after Labor Day. And we also have family in North Carolina where the kids go to "year round" school. They don't get a two month summer vacation, but they do get longer breakers throughout the year.

    But the simplest way to answer your question is that primary school starts with 1st grade, which is age 6. Kindergarten is the year before you're old enough to go to 1st grade, and pretty much every child attends if just for social interaction and learning some basic school rules.
     
  17. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2000
    Messages:
    10,357
    Media:
    40
    Likes Received:
    224
    Gender:
    Male
    Hehe, sorry I wasn't suggesting you tell him that. :) I was suggesting rather than telling him to follow directions "just because" when he comes across a situation like the one he did (i.e. where it's more convenient to deviate and makes sense to him to do so), tell him that he should tell the teacher the problem he is having and ask if it's OK to do what he wants instead. Not only does that show he understands the directions, but that he can think outside the directions and choose valid alternate means of accomplishing a task.
     
  18. Marceror

    Marceror Chaos Shall Be Sown In Their Footsteps Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

    Joined:
    May 3, 2003
    Messages:
    2,770
    Media:
    226
    Likes Received:
    234
    Gender:
    Male
    Before I switched my major to Computer Science in college, I was a music major for 2 years. In our first semester music theory course we were forced to write music that followed very restrictive Baroque era voice leading practices. Most of us hated this, because we wanted to be creative. But those of us who embraced the challenge learned how to write proper musical pieces reminiscent in sound to, say, Bach. It felt like we were 90%following rules, and 10% being creative. But we all learned some valuable lessons about the basic rules of writing music. As composers, they were our a, b, c’s.

    The next semester, with these rules ingrained in our systems, we were allowed more freedoms. We were 60% following rules and 40% creative. Semester 3 allowed us to be 60 - 70% creative. But the idea was, every time we broke one of the "cardinal rules" we had a reason for doing so. It wasn't because we didn't understand the cardinal rules and were doing so out of ignorance. Finally, in the 4th and final semester we were given all but absolute freedom to express ourselves musically.

    I think this model has some important parallels for a child. Kids are born with tendencies to want to do everything their way -- this isn't something they need to learn. All children are drawn to that which is forbidden like magnets. They want what they want. They don’t want rules, and they are incredibly stubborn. Parents need to focus their children into understanding and obeying rules. Children need to learn how to conform, because they don't understand this concept at first. It's an incredibly important part of their upbringing. In other words, they need to learn the cardinal rules and know how to follow them.

    As they grow up, they gain more freedoms. They can question more. But hopefully, when they do so, they have a good reason for doing so. And for them to have a good reason for doing so, they need to first understand what it means to conform, and accomplish tasks exactly as they have been instructed, even if they'd rather not.

    But at age 5, a child is still learning the basics. The most productive thing for them is to help them to understand how to accomplish that which is expected of them without questioning, at least in the context of their schoolwork. It doesn’t mean that opportunities for free expression can’t be provided in other contexts, such as a free play time after school. If kids don’t grasp these boundaries while young, than you are just asking for behavioral problems and other problems as they grow. "I know the teacher said that I’m not supposed to hit Billy, but I’m just expressing myself."

    No, kids need to learn how to comply first.
     
  19. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2000
    Messages:
    10,357
    Media:
    40
    Likes Received:
    224
    Gender:
    Male
    *shrug* It seems Jack would have been happy to comply had he been provided the necessary tools. Since he was not provided the tools necessary to complete his task as directed, he chose to deviate in a perfectly valid way. I don't think that should be discouraged. I can understand the need to explain that he cannot just deviate because he wants to, which is why I suggested he could be directed to tell the teacher of a problem he is having and ask if it's OK to do what he thinks is fine to accomplish the given task.
     
  20. Marceror

    Marceror Chaos Shall Be Sown In Their Footsteps Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

    Joined:
    May 3, 2003
    Messages:
    2,770
    Media:
    226
    Likes Received:
    234
    Gender:
    Male
    I don't know. Fast forward 30+ years to a situation I dealt with just yesterday as a manager. I gave one of my guys a small project to accomplish a while back, and set forth 2 primary requirements. In order for this individual to accomplish the project he had to rely on other people to do a lot of the work. He was responsible to give those individuals proper guidance and direction.

    So yesterday he told me that the project was nearing completion, and just needed to be field tested for a week or so. I asked him how the solution worked, and it became clear to me that only 1 of the 2 requirements had been fully met.

    I asked him why requirement b hadn't been fulfilled, and he told me that it was because the solution that was provided by one of the individuals doing the work hadn't been built to according the the requirement. In other words, my employee "hadn't been given the necessary tools."

    Rather than thinking that was a reasonable alternative, I laid into him. If the solution you were given didn't meet the requirements, then you should have said something about it. You should have pushed until you had everything you needed. Anything less than that falls short, and isn't good enough.

    I'm not sure when a parent/teacher is "supposed" to start teaching these sorts of lessons, but I'd say the sooner the better. Help a kid to develop good habits first. If they're supposed to use a red crayon and they don't have one, they should take some steps to get the red crayon. That's my take at least. It sounds like Aldeth is of the same mind.
     
Sorcerer's Place is a project run entirely by fans and for fans. Maintaining Sorcerer's Place and a stable environment for all our hosted sites requires a substantial amount of our time and funds on a regular basis, so please consider supporting us to keep the site up & running smoothly. Thank you!

Sorcerers.net is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to products on amazon.com, amazon.ca and amazon.co.uk. Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates.