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Help! My Child Is Learning Too Much

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by Admin 26th February, 2024

Hello and welcome to the month of February

2024 is well on its way already and it is going real fast.

For our monthly series this year, we will continue to share parenting tips because we all agree that when we know better, we do better. 

Something has been bothering me recently and it has to do with parents complaining about the rigor in schools these days. You hear things like, in our time school closed by 1pm, I didn't do homework, the content is too much for the children's age etc. The sad part for me is that we say these things in front of the children.

I am also a parent and I have had children at almost all levels of education from nursery to tertiary level and so I have had some of these sentiments at one point or the other but I have learnt that there is a fundamental issue that needs to be addressed to cub these complaints. 

And this is it:

How did you choose the school that your child is presently in? 

What were the criteria that you considered when you made that choice? 

I understand that considering the present state of our economy, the first thing parents consider now is the cost. While this is very important to consider, I have a bit of advice for you. I want you to reflect on these questions: 

- What is your vision for your family? What is your vision for your children? To put it in plain terms, 


- Are you planning to JAPA in the future or send the child off abroad? 

- Do you want them to follow a particular career path? Most of us will answer this with a shake of our heads and say, 'I am not one of those parents who wants to force my child to do anything.' Aunty/Uncle rest! I have heard it before. Until you get to that point, you don't really know how you will react. So rest. 

- Do you already have connection to give them a civil service job once they are done with school? Or is there a family business that they will continue with or work in so they don't really need to be stressed? 

I can come up with a thousand and one possibilities but these are pertinent things that you need to sit down with your spouse and ask yourself because whether you agree or not, your perspective will determine the choices you make and your reactions to issues. 

Now more than ever before, we need to be very intentional about our choices because the resources are leaner yet the needs are numerous. So whatever you decide to spend your money on must yield the highest level of value for you and the only way to achieve that is when the value offering of that thing helps you to achieve your own personal goals and vision. This is why you must first define what those goals and vision are before you go school hunting and when you get there, you should ask them for theirs and how they intend to achieve it. If it feels too much or too small in comparison to the eventual outcome that you want for your child, then you should move on and look for the one that does. 

If we can all be this intentional, then our complaining will cease completely or reduce to the bare minimum because we will be getting exactly what we signed up for considering the future we see and want for our children. 

Let me share an instance to make it more relatable, my first two children went to regular nursery, primary and secondary schools. At that time, the choice was made based on which school is the top-tier school in town then. There wasn't any well defined plan for the future. They did quite well and we were satisfied. Fast forward to when it was time to go to the university and at this point we had more clarity about what we wanted so we opted for an American style education. The question is, did we prepare them from the foundation for that style of education? Is that what they have been used to from the formative stage of their learning journey? Did we consider how they will cope because it is an entirely different system. Will we blame them if they do not thrive as they ought to there? Will it be because they are not good enough? The children have had to stumble through it and if not for their personal resilience and adaptability, the outcome would have been a total disaster. All of these could have been avoided.

 So the next time you go for your child's school's Open Day and they ask you what your goals and expectations are, please have a well thought out response for them so that it will guide them as they prepare your child for that future that you desire. 

I know that some schools just pick up a curriculum from the internet because it is what is in vogue without having their own clear vision of the outcome for the children. So they load the children with a lot of work that is not age appropriate and not even relevant to our context. This is why you should ask questions, listen intently to make an informed decision and then participate actively in your child's learning journey. Sometimes, the homework you complain about is not just aimed at improving academic prowess, it could also be to help the child develop their executive function skills like organisation, prioritisation, time management, problem solving skills and resilience, curiosity, adaptability, negotiation skills etc. So when the child is struggling with a task, it is not the time to bad mouth the school in front of the child. That is a talk for another day. Rather, you should use it as a teachable moment to pass on some life lessons to your child. 

Next month, we will look at setting expectations and communicating them to our children and how this affects their performance. Watch out for this!

In the meantime, let us be intentional in every aspect of our parenting. You only get to do this once in that child's life, do it knowledgeably.

I hope this helps.????????

If finding a school that will partner with you to create that educational plan and strategically pursue it is what you want to do, then join us today at Blooms 'n Daisies School, Calabar. Our educational agenda is whatever your agenda is for your child as long as you are ready to walk the walk with us.

This is wishing every parent out there grace and strength as we raise and gift the world outstanding individuals.????????