About seven years ago, one of my daughters was in Grade 3. One day, after she returned from school, I sat down as usual to listen to her stories. In the middle of our conversation, she told me, “I am frustrated.”
I asked if she understood the meaning of ‘frustrated’.
She replied, “Yes, as I have seen it often from books I have read”.
I then asked her what had happened at school.
She explained to me that her teacher did not understand her and did not like the fact that she read books in class.
The next day, I approached the school office and with great difficulty, I met the teacher and asked her how was my daughter doing in class. I also surprised my daughter by including her in the conversation. The teacher replied that she was doing good and asked me if I had a concern. I shared what she told me last evening and she responded in awe and did not believe me at first.
She told me that my daughter was covering chapters faster than other students in class and when she asked her to wait, she continued reading the book. I told her that as a teacher, she has a huge challenge, as each child was unique based on their parent’s view of the world and involvement. In the same token, how is it fair for a child that’s ready to take the next step to face hurdles? I requested her to be creative in her approach. Finally, we agreed that reading ahead is beneficial and encourages self-regulation. It was a win-win for both parties and the teacher loved her dearly and took good care of her.
This week, I asked my daughter, how would she have handled that situation, if I were not there for her when she needed me.
She replied that she would have not shared with me her other challenges and assumed that it would be her responsibility to deal with it all. In the end, she thanked me for listening to her patiently every day but more than that, she appreciated that I took the next step to solve the problem without any hesitation.
Later, she explained that generally parent’s lives are busy with little time for children. I asked her how she arrived at this conclusion. She replied that she talks to her friends all the time and that it was modern day reality. And, on the other hand, teachers were overwhelmed with current educational needs, as there was a gap between what they studied and what they teach, coupled with fast moving technology for the current generation. There are several issues crippling modern day education and it’s a struggle, as decision makers are distant from ground reality.
Please share with your families and friends