Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Vansh turns 5 and another BIG news

So finally the wait ended, the wait that lasted almost a year when he kept asking whose birthday is it next and had the order on his finger tips and kept repeating "Pehle nani ka b'day aayega, phir papa, phir Jiya, .... , phir chachi ka b'day, phir dadi ka aur phir VANSH KA!" In the last week before his b'day, he had already started saying "You know, next year I'll turn 6 years old!" oft leading to responses like "How about first turning 5 dude!"

But its so heart warming to see and feel the excitement, the glee in his voice and the wonder in his queries. "So will you buy me new clothes for 5 year old children then, new shoes too?", "So will I grow taller?", "When will I turn as old as papa?" and then the countdown every morning, "Is it today" followed by a whiny "Why not?" I wish for you to be always so enthusiastic about beginning a new year in your life, dear son as I wish for you the bestest of joys and the most wonderful cheer. I do expect a lot from you, you know that and we try hard together. We are successful in some things and have to try even harder in some more.

The other BIG news is that I get back to work next week. After 6 long years ..haaah. Even though its a 7 week contract to begin with, but for me, its still big. Its in the school that I worked in before getting married and moving to the US. I am thrilled to be getting back. You know out of the total of 5 meals that I have to feed my allergic-to-food and even more allergic-to-the feeding-mommy kids, 3 would be done by the daycare that we decide to put them in while I am away!!!! How cool is that?! Okay so thats not the only thrill factor ;) I had to go to meet the Principal and my HOD (Head of Department) today and Vansh was home with his grandmother. He was a bag full of questions when I returned ...

- So did you teach today? You were mam today? Don't make faces the way you do with me, okay, otherwise children will say our mam is so funny! Ohh, okay, thanks for the reality check!

- So who will drop me at my bus stop and who'll pick me up? Oh so if you go before me, I'll drop you at your bus stop, okay!

- Today he got quite worried about going to his Karate class, my mother in law told me. he even changed into his uniform and told her "Will you please take me since mamma has been away for so long?" when we have to go only inthe evening at 5:00 and I returned at like 12:00 :) But to be honest I felt good about the role that I play in his life and that he is realising it.

- Jiya chipped in with her queries - so will you go in Bhaiya's school bus? Why not?

I have a lot of apprehensions myself. To be working first time ever after having kids. I am so used to being there for them all the time as are they. What would it be like? I hope and I pray to the kind Lord to be especially generous with his blessings on us right now, to watch over us as we start yet another new chapter in our lives.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Journey to the Achievement Week

Vansh has in his school starting today what they call the achievement week, in which basically they would be tested and graded on whatever they have done throughout the year. As I and Ashwini cajoled him into learning at least 2 more rhymes out of the 20 odd rhymes, other than the ‘Aeroplane, aeroplane’ and ‘Lal peeli motor’ in a last ditch effort last evening, I realized that making him prepare for the said week has been a rather amusing experience.

- As you might have noticed, the rhymes that he did remember well are related to transport. No surprise that. Day before yesterday, I asked him to narrate the 'teddy bear, teddy bear turn around rhyme’ which he narrated as ‘teddy bear, teddy bear up in the sky; where are you going flying do high’. Basically he was just replacing the aeroplane word with the teddy bear in the ‘Aeroplane, aeroplane’ rhyme. On being asked what was he saying, he replied that the teddy bear is riding in the aeroplane. Hmmm, okay – what can one say to that except laughing at the logic!

In another instance last evening, Ashwini asked him to narrate a rhyme titled ‘2 little apples’. I’ll quote the conversation that took place :-

Vansh – 3 little monkeys jumping on the bed

Ashwini – I asked you to narrate 2 little apples

Vansh – No, 4 little monkeys …

Ashwini – 2 little apples

Vansh – No, 6 little monkeys …

Ashwini – 2 little …

Vansh – 10 little monkeys … (reminded me of the times when I tell him he’ll have to repeat a word he doesn’t remember 5 times, if he resists I go on increasing the number to 6,7,8 – its his turn now, hmm!)

Ashwini – Okay, lets just make it 2 little monkeys …

Vansh – 6 little monkeys jumping …

Chachi called the doctor …

Chacha called the doctor …

Dadi/Dada/ Papa/ Mamma called the doctor …

Us : Oh! So that was the logic behind the 6 jumping monkeys. Each one from the family ought to get a chance to call the doctor!

- I made him several worksheets for English, Hindi and Maths to practice matching the picture with the correct letter, circling the correct letter, counting and circling the correct number and the like. Many a times he liked to do his own thing with those.

This is what a typical worksheet on matching looked like. I couldn’t just give it to him and then proceed to check it some time later for that would be a maze exercise for me to see whether the picture is actually connected with the correct letter. I would have to actually look at him start from a particular picture, doodle endlessly and finally reach the corresponding letter. Normal is boring for this little fella!

He once didn’t want to work on any Maths worksheet because he was bored and said that he wanted to make one of his own. So he picked up a template and came up with this.

He made several English worksheets too at the back of the ones I gave to him to work on. I just have one picture though he made much better ones when the idea was novel to him and he drew meticulously.

The zig-zag matches with the Z, thats an umbrella matched with the U and a Race-car with the R. The big curve on the right is lots of smoke from the race car since it moves so fast.

He decided to spruce up a plain looking hurriedly made ‘What comes after’ worksheet by drawing an amusing looking Papa on it. And didn't deem the worksheet important enough to be completed, by the way.

- I am not sure if I have mentioned before that Vansh is extremely conscious of his public image, especially his image at school. I have a mighty hard time explaining that at home, he is the total opposite of the really the sweet docile boy that he pretends to be in front of friends. At PTM’s, when I and his class teacher (whom he is very very fond of and would do anything to be in her good books) exchange notes, I am like “Are you sure, you are talking about the same Vansh that I am talking about?” The difference shows in his work too. While his class work is immaculate and like his teacher claims among the first one to be finished, he likes to do his own thing taking his own time at home. On a regular basis, he does not write the counting in the correct order. He’ll first write say the 20’s line, then spend some time thinking where the 70 would come and then write the line backwards till 61 and so on. While practicing to draw a garden scene for his art test the next day, this is what he came up with at school and then at home. The school one is complete with a shining sun, trees and flowers and a bunny. He wanted to just make a big sun sitting in the garden and kept drawing rays of the sun.Then he wanted to draw a dog in its kennel which is what that square is.