Wednesday, December 14, 2011
That's My Boy!
My son is growing up. In this picture he is receiving his first stripe in Shotokan karate. He learned all his stances to earn that stripe; I am very proud of him for the diligence and discipline it took to get over that first hurdle. He would have gotten his stripes for blocks and punches as well, but they ran out of time.
Brendan is kind of smart. He can count to twenty or more in Spanish and Chinese; he can count in English until he's bored silly. At four years and nearly a season, he reads at a second-grade level or better. He either impresses or amazes everyone who speaks with him.
We can't afford to send him to a private school, so we are hoping he does well on the exam he has scheduled for February, which will determine if he qualifies to attend one of the better local magnet schools. Now he attends preschool at a church in Sulphur four hours a day four days a week. He is so advanced in some areas that it seems like the place is holding him back, but he is learning to socialize better and to follow teachers' instructions. He is also learning a lot of cool songs, and he has the Pledge of Allegiance down pat. Carrie and I work on the other things with him at home.
When I see the faces of his classmates when I bring him to school, two things occur to me. First, they all seem really happy to see him; second, they all seem less mature or developed next to him. It isn't that they are or even appear dull, it's more that Brendan is truly bright and sharp; the contrast is stark. It prompts me to want to make sure that he isn't lumped into regular classes with average kids when he begins his education in earnest. The lowest common denominator to which teachers must cater in regular classes is simply too low for him. There'd be no real challenge or excitement for him; he could skate through semi-consciously.
I don't push him at all; the pace at which he likes to learn is fast enough for me. In some cases it feels a bit too fast, but I refuse to hold him back. He also has shown that the Murphy didactic streak runs through him; I believe he has already taught Cullen way more than I have. He even has a great sense of humor; his favorite knock-knock joke is: Knock knock! Who's there? Who! Who who? Did you hear that owl? He likes the one about yodeling, too. Gotta love him...