Cheeky Chap is an active child. He likes to run, play, create and build. He is full of energy and he never seems to stop. He is fiercely independent and this independence is growing. He does not like to be still or to be told what to do.
This obviously creates some problems. He is in Reception now, in proper school and while a lot of his learning is still play based, there is more formal education. Namely, reading and writing practise. Every morning parents sit with the children and get them to practise their reading or writing. Most of the children do this, seemingly with little trouble. In fact, his best friend has to be told to stop each morning and he will always have to finish what he is reading or writing. Cheeky Chap just doesn’t do either. He looks around. He talks. He swaps books. He finds pencils (these are never out each morning). He plays with his friend’s toddler sister. He does anything except what he is meant to do in that time.
I have try to encourage him to write at home but concentrating after a long day at school is tiring for a small four-year-old. We recently bought him a whiteboard and chalkboard which seems to have worked wonders in terms of encouraging him to practise his writing but I still got a little frustrated that he couldn’t quite write his name correctly. He can spell it and he can write the letters but he often writes it back to front or he will use capital letters, something he gets from the husband.
Then, one day last week, while I was in the kitchen preparing dinner and the husband was out on a few errands, I noticed it was all a bit too quiet. Anyone who has a young child will know that a young child being quiet is very rarely a good thing. I walked into the front room and I saw this.
I am not sure when it happened. When my child managed to start writing a little bit neater, a little bit bit smaller (he previously would use as much space as possible). I am not sure when he stopped writing his name back to front or used lower case letters. I was so pleased with him. He was so pleased for himself. He was that pleased that he insisted on keeping the piece of paper (and rightly so!) and took it into school the following day. His key-worker was very impressed as well and took a copy for his file.
Isn’t it funny how we can worry about children not developing certain skills properly and then all of a sudden they surprise us, when we least expect it?