Thursday, October 16, 2008

Give 'em an inch

The popular expression goes, "Give them an inch, and they'll take a mile," right?

I've been following the educators' leads and working hard to back off this year as Amanda has entered Intermediate school. I'm not exactly sure the success of this measure, but I'm still trying. Each time I fail (by continuing to nag and remind and cajole), I realize that I'm stunting her growth. I might need to let her fail so that she can learn responsibility.

We're a week into the change in usage of the TV, and I can report that it's going well. Of course Kyle complained a few times the first day or so, but in general it's working well. In fact, this weekend, after playing with Kyle and doing different things, he was "bored," so I hoped asked, "Would you like to watch some TV?" and his answer was "No." No??? To TV? Even after having restricted usage earlier in the week? Yep, he's getting it.

We've played more games, read more books, etc. I like to play games. I don't mind playing children's games since those are the people who are usually willing to play with me. I've never been a huge fan of Candy Land, but somehow last year, Kyle decided it was fun. So, we played a few times, and then it got put away. I've been doing some spring cleaning, and trying to purge some of the games, so I had a couple stacked in the hall that I had taken out of the closet to give to give away. Kyle saw them. "Can we play the Candy game?" he asked, so we did. We played three times in fact, and twice more yesterday. And you know what -- it's not so bad. When we played the first rounds, he had won the first two times, and really wanted me to win the third time. This is in marked contrast to other games we've played when he's burst into tears saying, "I really wanted to win!"

So, I'm changing the expression. My new one is "Give them an inch, and they'll grow an inch." My kids sure have.


anner1010 said...

Ugh!! I know I should be backing off too, letting my children learn by experience, but it's SO hard! Maybe I'll adopt your new expression and write it on my refrigerator...and bathroom mirror...and washer and dryer...and the steering wheel of the van...and probably some other places too.

Carrie said...

I missed your tv post earlier (not sure how really) and so I followed your link to read back to that one so as to understand this one. That's awesome! Sounds like everything you are working for is working itself out.

Beck said...

This is the FIRST year that The Girl has had homework, so we're trying to teach her how to be responsible for doing it without hovering too much. It's tricky.

Leya said...

Jennifer, I love you blog! I left you a little something, here.

Katrina said...

Well, I can't agree with you on Candyland, but in general I do love playing games with my kids.

I've been backing off in the homework area as well, although some help with "focus" is still needed. But Camden's doing very well handling all his studying on his own, so it is nice to be able to pull back a little and see him step up to handle the responsibility.