Saturday, March 22, 2014

Show Me

"So show me family..."

The Lumineers start playing off of our Spotify "Party" mix (otherwise known as, "all of the songs that make Ari dance"), and Ari does, indeed, dance around.  He narrates his moves, "Dince!" "Jumping." "Mommmmyy, c'mon!"

Then, the lyrics really start to fill his little mind. He shouts, "Ho! Hey!" And then, "Show meeeee! Show meeeeee!"

And I have to pause to simply revel in this little boy, in how he absorbs EVERYTHING like a sponge.

I take a moment to feel slightly guilty about not being a tiger mom who will have her child speaking six languages by the time he's six.

Then, I dance with my son, spinning and following his commands, "Run, Mama!" "Jump, Mama!"

I'm showing him family. This time with my toddler is not about preparing him for his amazing future career. I can't help but comment on his engineering skills when he builds a Lego tower or his athletic ability when he escapes his crib, but ultimately, I want to enjoy my child and for him to enjoy being a child.

It's rather ironic, because as a teacher, I wonder what happens at home.  Why don't some of my students know anything about how to be a student? What prevented their parents from showing them what it means to function in an academic environment? As a parent, I don't want to worry about those things. I don't want to force vocabulary lessons and math puzzles on my son. I want him to learn by doing. I refuse to feel like a failure because he doesn't read for fifteen minutes everyday; I'd rather he enjoy the time we do spend reading.

Still, he shows me he's learning.  He can say words from each letter of the alphabet. He strings together three word sentences, "Daddy...horsey...ride..." He can proudly hold, "One...two!" items (and often asks for a second item just so he can shout, "Twwwoooo").  He grabs a book and "reads" to me, pointing out his favorite animals, seeking out pictures he remembers, "Chicken? Chicken? Chicken!" He asks for his favorite books by topic, "Truck."  "Baby."  "Duck."

He also asks for his favorite songs by title, "Happy."

"Fun." (That's "Some Nights" by Fun).

And, then,"Ball."

Yes, that would be "Wrecking Ball."  I should have opened with that.  Then I wouldn't have had to bother mentioning that I'm not a tiger mom.  Any parent who plays "Wrecking Ball" to their toddler is forbidden from calling themselves a tiger mom.

Oh well. At least my kid will be able to show off his mad skills on the dance floor.

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