I’ve received a lot of good advice over the years. But I’ve also heard some bad. Discovering we can learn as much from the bad as the good, here’s a bit of the bad, this given to me as my son approached kindergarten age:
“Since your son is only 19 months older than your daughter, and boys are slow and girls are bright, you can teach them simultaneously using the same graded [read: canned] curriculum. Just hold your son back a little and begin when your daughter is ready.”
Where do I begin with how bad this advice was? I suppose I’ll begin with the worst: I almost took the advice.
Little did I know then – I was living on prayer and instinct – but I came to discover my instincts were right not taking the advice because:
- boys can be bright, too (duh, huh?)
- 19 months is a big difference
- children – even in the same family – learn differently
- children will express their different personalities in the edu-setting
- holding a child back is as bad as forcing a child forward
- boys do not always like goo
- girls do not always avoid goo
Having nearly taken the advice and glad to have shelved it, I offer my own bit of advice, plain and simple:
If you have two children, treat them like two children. You aren’t stuffing them into a public school box, so why stuff them into each others’ edu-shoes?
I learned my son and I learned my daughter.
Have you received bad advice we could learn from?