I blame the American education system (part 1 of many)

When your kid reads early, people accuse you of pressuring them. Being way too focused on academics. Never mind that after they’ve lectured you they march right home and put their own kid on Starfall.

When your kid reads early, you also get asked a lot, “What’s the point? Why all the rush?”
HELLO… Your kid gets to READ. Reading is FUN. Why would anybody want to deprive their kid of that pleasure potentially for years.

When strangers noticed our kid reading, we would often lie about our kid’s age, rounding up to the nearest year rather than being honest. We shouldn’t have to do that.  We didn’t tell anybody our kid was reading early except relatives and close friends without kids.  Still, one can’t stop the kid from reading as if it’s something to be ashamed of.  I hate the way Americans are so anti-intellectual.  So concerned that if their kid does anything academic they will destroy their childhood rather than enhancing it (though again, they do go home and use the same techniques to “pressure” their own kids).  I’m amazed it takes until 4th grade to beat the joy of learning out of kids– if it were up to their parents it would start at birth.  Personally, I blame the American education system.

p.s.  Starfall is awesome.

6 Responses to “I blame the American education system (part 1 of many)”

  1. Donna Freedman Says:

    Some of the same people who are anti-intellectual are putting their kids in organized sports as early as age 3.
    Oh, but that’s not pressure. That’s “healthy.”
    And as they get older, it’s “good for them” to be in more than one soccer league at a time. Or to have a sport for every season, with practice time and commute time that suck hours out of the day that could be used on free play, or homework, or just lying in the grass and dreaming.
    Grumble, grumble, rant.

  2. thoughts on an earlier kid post « Grumpy rumblings of the untenured Says:

    […] when this comes up, I didn’t say anything.  (Because, when I do acknowledge hir abilities I get cross-examined about being pushy and forcing useless skills like reading on my […]

  3. anandi Says:

    You are so right. And yes, reading is amazing. My 2yo is just *itching* to learn how to read, and I know it’ll happen long before kindergarten, with the questions she’s asking me. I love that you also mentioned that reading = quiet in the house on Cloud’s blog :D

  4. Ask the grumpies: What do you say when people in public say your kid is smart or shy? « Grumpy rumblings of the untenured Says:

    […] DC was much younger I admit to rounding up hir age when asked, not so it was incorrect, but giving the most generous rounding I could do (almost 3, […]

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