Tuesday, October 18th, 2011
Too often we as educators and parents, get hyper-focused on the things our/your kids can’t do or struggle with. Even with the best of intentions, adults lose perspective. We run the risk of trying so hard, too hard, to squeeze children with learning disabilities into the mold of what we want for our kids in the future. And in the meantime, you miss moments of opportunity.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m in the business of educating and problem-solving for kids and families with learning and behavioral struggles. I believe very much in early identification of risks and struggle and for planning for the future.
But when we’re too future-focused, we lose sight of the forest for the trees. In the case of kids, that means missing the beauty of their wondrous perfection, imperfections and all. In case you think I’m being too sappy and sentimental, read this article in the NY Times called “Notes from a Dragon Mom”. The author, a professor of writing at a Sante Fe university, has an 18 month old child who will die for sure, because of a rare genetic disorder. It’s powerful piece, and she reminds us all of the importance of loving your child in the present moment. In her case there is no future to hold onto so there isn’t the usual focus on parenting “in the right way.”