Monday, January 19, 2009

naomi aldort

I just read this in her newsletter:
A mother asked me, "how do I know that its all right for my baby to breastfeed and fall asleep on the breast?" Looking for evidence, she missed the proof. Thinking that the baby doesn't know took this mother away from the loudest truth: reality. The baby is nursing and falling asleep. That's how I know that this is what the baby should do. He does it.
I just love this. With my first, August, I listened to mainstream others, at first, even though we had Sears' The baby book. He lost weight, significantly (like a LOT more than the usual.....), the first week. I reread sections of our only baby book and went on a "breastfeeding holiday" I nursed until the cows came home....and in one week he gained all that and more......I was so dang proud. My first pangs of attachment parenting had hit (not including not letting him out of my sight at the hospital.....) Thank god they did.
So how does this apply to learning and education. Mainstream people agree kids must go to school and the proof is that kids who go to school learn (?). But so do those who stay at home. So where is the proof otherwise. Why are they so AGAINST homelearners/lifelearners? Because they don't want to keep their kids at home? Because they WANT their kids at school so they can have some 'freedom'? Even my supersweet neighbor, with a SUPER kid, said to me "Aren't you worried about social interactions?? Aren't you worried about him missing something?" My son has started labeling maps that he draws. For example: an "E" for elephant. Now if I listened to my Lucy Calkins writing in elementary set (neat books by the way...but not for my kids), he should have been able to do this in K, I tried hard to get him to do it in grade 1, and have perhaps made him fight wanting to write now because of my efforts....Now he's doing it without my help, and I forsee a natural progression....if I can TRUST that he will do it on his own. I fight my own internal battles constantly with mainstreem educators and parents and pressure from others and what I want for my kids.....add to this the fact that my early memories are female, and I LOVED making perfect letters. Do kids learn despite going to school? One of my friends, a trained teacher, spoke of imitating at home what she did at school and making her girls and herself MISERABLE. After 3 weeks she gave up, she dropped it. So what does this say about what is inflicted upon kids at school by the most wellmeaning people. I remember August saying "Mummy, it's so looooooooong" Having said all that, maybe for some kids, school is a haven.....a whole 'nother subject.....

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