Thursday, February 16, 2006

More about Brain

Here he is at 2 years old:)

I have told him about this blog and what I named him. I explained that I considered "Bookworm", since that describes him more accurately, but that I was too lazy to type that out all the time. Brain is shorter.

He asked me to call him "Viper" on here. I said I have already confused people, I am sorry, you are Brain for the time being.

Where was I??? Ah yes. Bana Spit.

So things were good. He loved preschool. It was actually more like a day care centre, I realised later. He was allergic to milk and they continued to give it to him and not listen to me when I reminded them. They did not listen to him when he told them either. So he did what any other kid would do when given a forbidden treat. He drank it!! Luckily he was growing out of the allergy, but still. What if it was VERY serious?? I was not impressed with that.

He was almost 3 when he started there and he LOVED IT. I have since understood that there is no need for preschool and have not sent my younger two. Just another expense and place to remember to drop off and pick up. They learn on their own, and Clown is my prime example of that. I will save that for my posts on him! I did it then, because I thought that was what one does when they have children.

They did some educational type things sometimes, but mainly just sat them in front of the TV most of the time. Which is not a good thing to do with him. He loses himself in it and won't move for hours.

He sat in front of Pooh Bear movies for about 4 months during my early pregnancy with Jock. He was SUCH an easy toddler and baby, etc. I had no choice, I was horribly sick and would vomit if I moved. He sat in his little seat at the foot of the couch where I laid all morning feeling guilty that I could not get up and play with him like always.

He assured me all was well, he was in his element!!! Nothing has changed in that department. This past week, recovering from surgery, he has watched more TV/Movies than he normally watches in about 3 months time!

His skin condition would settle down from time to time and then get worse again. He was always itchy and scratching and every time we gave him a bath, we had to smear all manner of ointments and creams on him and then cover his feet AND hands with socks, to let it all soak in. He got very self conscious about this and when he was about 5, told me of a nightmare he had.

He said he was laying in the tub soaking (we had been instructed to submerge as much of him as possible and get him good and wet before we got him out and "greased him up" as we came to call it) when he got itchy and was scratching so much he could not stop. He said that he looked down and the bath tub was full of blood and all his skin was floating on the surface of the water and that he was just a skeleton. What five year old should have to be tormented that way?? It was heart breaking for me to see him suffer like he was, but I always thanked God he did not have leukemia or CF or anything life threatening of course.

He is a very sensitive person. Incredibly caring and thoughtful. He is like his Father in the way that they are both off in their own little world much of the time. They literally tune out everything that is going on around them. My other kids enjoy things, but are more like me. If they are doing something they really enjoy, they are still aware that other people are around and there is activity.

If Brain is watching something, playing a video game, reading, etc. You literally have to go over and touch him a few times and put your face in his face to get him to come "out of it" and realise you have been talking to him or that you need his attention. The others can be doing those things and you talk and they just look up from it and respond to you. Jock and Brain will be playing a video game and I start saying something and Jock will finally have to pause the game and he yells "BRAIN! Mom is TALKING to you!?!?! HELLO!?!?!"

For this reason, when he is left caring for the younger two, he is not allowed to do any of those things. I am terrified that one of them will be hurt or something and he will be oblivious. They play board games or do something crafty. He is starting to be able to control this a little bit and be more aware that he is this way. He wants to be able to watch a movie with them or something when we leave him with them. He is showing great promise in this area.

Somehow, even being this way, he does have the ability to multi-task in some areas. I remember when he was in grade three, I was HSing him again. He had attended a private Kindergarten in South Carolina. Only reason I put him in there was because we had just moved down there and knew NO ONE. I wanted him to make some friends. I had planned on HSing them, but wanted to give him a chance to meet some kids. Then I HSed for grade one. By the time he was in Grade two, we had moved back here {PRAISE GOD!!) and I was pregnant with Princess. I did not think I could do a good job teaching he and Jock as well as caring for a toddler and a newborn. I now know better, but hindsight is 20/20, right?

So when I had them home again, I thought I was not teaching them all they needed to know, so I put them back in. He was in grade three, I guess it was. I would go volunteer in his class and was amazed that the teacher would allow him to be reading a book while she was teaching. I asked her about it. Don't the other kids get jealous that they can't, etc etc?? She said no, everyone is fine with it. Watch this.

So I was at my table, doing whatever and she was talking and asking questions. Brain was reading, but when she would direct a question at him, he would not hesitate. He would not even look up from the book sometimes, just keep reading, and give her a detailed answer and even add some extra info for good measure. She would look at me all excited like "Uh?? What do you think of that??!?!" I thought it was rude on his part and was surprised she permitted it! She just seemed so impressed.

Around that same time, we got a letter in the mail, saying something about a Highly Capable Program that they wanted him in. We had not heard of this, but apparently he would be bussed to another school the next fall. I had planned on HSing them again, but Stud wanted to check into it. They sent us various test results and it showed that he was reading at the level of a 2nd year college student. He was 7 years old.

I started asking around, to see what other mothers knew about this. I knew he would do well at home. He learns at his own pace. Takes his time on things he needs to (Math) and speeds along at things he excells at. I didn't want to mess with that. Not to mention I want to be the major influence until they have a good foundation to stand on. There are MANY reasons why I Homeschool them.

It was the saddest thing. The mothers I asked, were all JEALOUS that Brain got into this!?!?!? Apparently this was a coveted letter and some of them actually said to me, "My son could have gotten in to that school, if only he would apply himself."

THEY ARE LITTLE BOYS!?!?!! What do you want them to do!?!? They are busy learning how to spit and snap their fingers and whistle for crying out loud!?!? Only reason Brain got in is because his passion happens to be something that is academic. When you are passionate about something and it interests you, you will tend to excell at it. Or at least enjoy it immensely. HE taught himself how to read, because he was passionate about it. He knew there was something magical about this thing I did with him for hours a day, that he begged for more and more. He knew if he worked at it, he could unlock the code and do this wonderful thing for himself. So he did.

I don't understand people who push thier children to be someone they aren't. I guess that is another blog for another day.

Clown is here telling me about a dream he had, signing off for now...


The Ramblin Irishman said...

Hi, I finally got some time to read your blog and catch up a little. My wife would get her dander up if she knew about a pre-school that just let the kids watch tv. She was in that field for over 25 years and never, never did they not have a curriculum that was designed for learning. I admire you for your diligence in working with your children at home. A lot of people don't want to be bothered or they have to work due to whatever condition. It was so rare to find a place like where my wife was. Most of them are baby sitting services and poor at best. Good to hear your son is doing so good.

happyandblue2 said...

He sounds like such a cool kid. And of course he has a cool Mom..

Lowa said...

Ramblin'--how true. Just babysitting services. Don't people take pride in their work anymore. We are talking about young children, there is SO MUCH one can do to spark their imagination, creativity, etc etc. I really despise TV sometimes. Most of the time. Trying to get the husband to understand we need to shut it off, or even get rid of it!

Happy- Aw shucks. Thanks! I sure have a blast with them. I hope they will turn out ok. Hard not to worry sometimes, ya know??