Friday, January 07, 2011

Not so worried any more 

At preschool, E is learning all sorts of things. She can read many words now. She yells "S-T-O-P STOP" at every red stop sign, and she is sure to point with much animation every time she sees "God" on the screen at church.

Sometimes, though, I wonder about some of the things she might be learning. I was shocked when I walked into her empty class room one morning and saw two poems on the story board, side by side. One said "I am a boy, and I like toys" and then went on to explain how the boy also liked cars, etc. It had a nice picture of a boy in blue. On the girl half the girl said, "I am a girl and I have curls" and she likes dolls. And she wore pink. Ick - pink.

So E and I had a talk. "Do boys sometimes have curls?" I asked. She named a few boys in her class who had curly hair. "And do girls like to play with toy
s and cars?" She assured me they do. "And can boys play with dolls?" She was sure they could. She'd seen it happen before. So, I was relieved. That is, until her teacher (not the lead teacher, thankfully) came in the class and saw what I was doing. I explained that I was just pointing out how girls and boys could BOTH do the things listed in each poem. The teacher said, "Well, it's just to teach them r
eading." As if the content were TRIVIAL! I lost a LOT of faith in that teacher that day. THAT was her excuse? With that reasoning, almost ANYTHING could be used, as long as the phonetic sounds were right. That's a bit scary. (And they weren't even good poems.) -- Sigh.

Today, however, E assured me in more than one way that she has not decided what to like and dislike based on gender norms. For that I am grateful. This morning E told me that she wanted another Cars cake for her birthday again this year, just like last year. (I wonder if she'll want the heart on the road, too, again this year, or if she'll ask for princesses instead.)

This evening she told daddy all about the lego men she built with her friends. She was so excited, because together they had made Batman, Cap'in 'Merika, and Two Face the Bad Guy.

One thing I can tell you for sure: She wasn't the one lead
ing the play at this point. She didn't even realize that Cap'in 'Merika was supposed to be pronounced "Captain America" until S pronounced it back to her. That said, at least she doesn't think she must contain her play to only girls. Or, if she is, her girl friends like to watch "boy" cartoons. :) (It's been confirmed-- she was
, indeed, playing with two little boys when they built lego men.)

Alright, since you've read this far, you deserve some pictures.
First, K being cute (hasn't she grown?). Second, E on her first ice skating adventure, skating on the very same rink that I used to learn to skate. I am happy to report that she was brave and, even though she tired easily, she really did remarkably well and ended the adventure skating herself to the other side of the rink so she could go home. (I was astonished that she didn't ask me to carry her.)

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