Monday, January 26, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
The effects of the Gaza war have been closer to home. One of M's teachers lost two relatives,and over the last weeks Janaza prayers continue to be held after the Jummah prayer.
But our somewhat mundane but safe life goes on, alhamdulillah, and a post on Always Learning, encouraged me to write a bit about motivation and learning, something I may have touched on before. Don't expect an in-depth analysis, my sleep pattern's still a bit strange at the moment as I deliberate over sleep training versus attachment parenting. Invariably Hz's cuddly body ends up close to mine for much of the night, seeking a bit of comfort.
Anyway, the other day H surprisingly got a certificate for maths from nursery. He'd been away on the day they had a 'Nobelfest' party for the Nobel Prize, and every child was given a certificate for something. M also got a 3rd prize for dictation (a home made mini certificate). My MIL once realising what they were, gave a small monetary award. In H's case he was v pleased especially as he was increasing his savings for having done something he enjoys. M also was motivated to be top of his class, although I hadn't noticed any particular increase in practice before the weekly tests. I remember friends of mine receiving a set amount for each A they got at GCSE. I can't remember being particularly resentful that I didn't get such rewards. Somehow I knew that doing less than your best was not an option. Maybe it was having an older sister setting the example, or the not always overt message that you had to go to University to get anywhere in life.
Ideally all learning should be self-motivating. S checks his spellings quiet carefully when typing stuff on his You-Tube channel, or in the RPG games, maybe knowing the readers are likely to have a negative attitude to any mistakes?
I myself quickly try to find out why Biryani has got cracked lips and read that it could be due to a Vitamin B deficiency (which doesn't surprise me as her range and amount of food intake is v limited at the moment) I make sure she gets her vitamins. Looking something up for a reason, and it's likely I'll remember it too..
The bigger picture, the end goals, are things that are hard for children to always comprehend. That's why we end up dressing some work up with certificates and stickers, with material rewards.
It is frustrating that the brain being like a sponge at a young age have owners who want to use it for seemingly trivial things, like RPG. And this is where I try to relax about how they're doing educationally. S has managed to learn to read and spell in English with a minimal amount of input from my part, why shouldn't the others do the same?
Having said that, I've still managed to order the next lot of Peter and Jane books for H (but only because he seems to like them!).
Monday, January 19, 2009
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Boys have come back from school reporting mixed messages they are getting from teachers re the current Gaza situation. S's teacher (a self-confessed atheist) informed them that the Jews came to Israel 2000 years ago, so it is their land. Their Islamic studies lecturer advised them not to buy Coca Cola nor shop at Lidl. I am glad my kids do reveal what goes on at school so we can give both sides of the story. In a way it's good to get other people's opinions so that answers to these can be thought through, rather than to be caught unawares. However I can imagine some kids just take every one of their teachers' words as true, and don't discuss it with their parents. S had discussed his teachers comments with his classmates at break time and they had agreed on the unfair bias. Just to add, Lidl has denied supporting Israel. Please double check for yourselves, I rarely shop there anyway.
I can never remember current affairs being discussed when I was at primary school, just in 'history' that the Crusaders went to free the Holy Lands. At least this current massacre has been recorded for posterity and only those with hearts as hard as stone can try and justify it. Here is the Israeli spokesman being put in his place for once .(I remember Channel 4 news was the only mainstream News programme that doesn't have an Israeli bias).
Monday, January 12, 2009
Hz ‘s sleep pattern continues to worsen. It was gone 12.20 a.m by the time he slept the other night and then he woke again after only an hour. The miracles of thumb sucking have lost their appeal to him as I think his 2 bottom teeth make it uncomfortable to suck. So what sleep-inducing replacement? Moi! I shall probablyhave to do a bit of leaving him to cry, but shall wait till MIL is not here as I expect she would find it hard to leave him to cry.
Friday, January 09, 2009
Tuesday, January 06, 2009
A few minutes into 2009, the rockets flew through the air, making, as on every New Year's Eve, sleep before 1.30 a.m., almost impossible. A few minutes into the annual firework extravaganza and I thought how ironic this was as real, deadly rockets are landing on the trapped inhabitant of Gaza.
Hz has been quite ill this past week, although I expect it would be termed only as a cold by the doctors so I didn't take him in. He's had a wheezy chest, cough and very runny nose, so not wanting to feed so much, and needing a lot of holding. But I cannot complain, he can have clean milk, have his nappy changed regularly and a mother who is not in fear of her and her family's lives.
The fear and desperation on those sisters' faces, the ultimate disappointment in humankind reflected in her words.
But what to do? This situation is one of the peaks in the continuing oppression of a people, a Palestinian sister here in Sweden recounted similar atrocious conditions about 5 years ago and I asked her then what could be done. Oppression is still going on throughout the world even if it's not currently on Sky news; Zimbabwe, China, Afghanistan...
The best I can say is as I concluded then, du'a,
and a frown came over my face as saw the label where our current pack of avocadoes came from, Israel....