Thursday, May 08, 2014

Being overtaken

Apparently, it is a defining moment in a child's life to realise that they are actually smarter or they actually know more than their parents. I remember when I realised my parents sucked at Math. Thankfully I had two brothers who could help and even till today, remain smarter than I am.

I am fast approaching that point with Evan. He asks questions that I cannot answer off the top of my head. I have to pay attention when he asks me what words mean or how things work. When I try the socratic questioning thing with him; to lead him to his own answer and he gets it, he is pleased. Often, in order to be aware of how he got to that answer I try and ask him how he figured it out deductively. And he will tell me truthfully, 'It came from my head. I thought of it myself.'

Increasingly, his responses to how he knows things approximate that. I am happy because I can help him get to the answer rather than telling it to him.

But there are things that he knows that are truthfully beyond me. He plays chess. He figured it out how to do it through a combination of the giant chess set they have at school, our neighbour and her mum as well as Packrat reading cheat guides online.

He makes me play with him. I can't play chess. All I know is the pawn moves straight up and the knight moves in a shape of an L. So he attempts to teach me. And because Mommy's brain doesn't work strategically, I am often left staring blankly at the board. So he will help me. Or seem to help me. He tells me where I ought to move to.

Unfortunately, my not yet 7 yo is a strategist, capitalising on the fact that Mommy knows next to nothing and can be fooled. Obediently, I move where he tells me to not knowing that his motive of getting me was to facilitate his ability to relieve me of my pieces.

And when I call him on it, he gives me a shy but extremely victorious smile. Yes, I'd been had by my son. 

I just have to make sure though that he doesn't mistake his knowledge and his bright sparks for wisdom and that even with all the cleverness in the world, he is still willing to learn and that he displays all this intellect with humility rather than self-inflated arrogance.

                                                   's Talkative Thursdays


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