Thursday, 22 May 2014

Term 2

We are ending our second term and...I have some things to air out.
Sonshine's school is all about character building- which is great and nothing wrong. But when I look at the traits they use to measure a 'good' student, I cannot help but feel Sonshine is being slighted. The traits listed are those of a vocal and expressive child- a child whom Sonshine is not. To me it is like using a monkey's abilities to judge an elephant. The school have given out a number of awards based on these traits and Sonshine didn't get any. He said he was sad when I asked him how he felt and that he tried very hard but still didn't get recognised. That broke my heart.
I am not coveting for the awards but I feel bad for Sonshine because his efforts are not being recognised. He's trying hard but it goes unnoticed. A little bit like a child who studies so hard but still yields little result. But for Sonshine, it is trying to be someone he is not. And that brings me to my next point, I worry the subtle message the school is sending out to him: that being an introvert child is wrong. They want a student who is not just great in academics but one who is vocal, speaks well and posses model characteristics. The latter is not Sonshine. He is a quiet child, who shy away from attention and struggles to express himself. Yet, because the school seemingly expects a more prominent student, Sonshine tries hard to be that student but seems like it is not good enough for the teacher. 
The other thing I feel sorry about is that none of the teachers (even his kindergarten teachers) are/were able to pick out his potential. Only his Montessori teachers were able to detect his true learning pace; but it gets unnoticed by his mainstream teachers. Not surprising really, since it is hard for the latter to know all of her 30 students personally. Also, the curriculum is really easy, so it isn't a big deal if he scores full marks for his papers because everyone else is hitting that mark too.
Honestly, I thought having a good foundation academically means the child will breeze through school. But here I am struggling with getting Sonshine to be that ideal student the school wants him to be. I can heck about it but week in week out I see feedback about Sonshine not being vocal enough and that makes it hard to not get bothered. It is not like Sonshine is not trying at all, but the teacher seems to be focusing on the end-result rather than the effort. I fear that overtime Sonshine would resigned from trying and proclaim 'What's the use anyway'. :(
Fortunately, his self esteem is still intact. That's my Sonshine. Nothing seems to faze him, no matter how much bad words is spoken to or about him. I love that about him, he's able to pick himself up and move on. He never allow what people think or say about him affect him. I hope he stays this way for the world out there is rough. I am also not taking that for granted. I have been telling him that Mummy thinks he deserve a full award for his effort- never mind if the teacher didn't send an award his way. I reminded him that what is more important is what God, the most powerful being in this universe, thinks of him. For Psalms 139:4 says that he is wonderfully made. I tell him to look into the mirror and tell himself that God has made him wonderful- what other (equally weak& faulty) mortals say about him holds no water. :) 

Funnily, I think I am more affected than he is! He has moved on his merry ways. I am the one who is mopping here! LOL! And so, it is a reminder to ME that our confidence should not be in the awards or people's opinion of us which are temporal and can change over time. But our confidence should be built in Christ for His love for us is unconditional, unchanging and never wavers. I want to raise my children to put their security in God's word rather than in people. I have seen too many adults whose sense of love and security is in other people or material things and how they get crushed when these things fade away. I don't want my kids to grow up like them, I want them to stand firmly even when things around them fail them. I reckon the Lord gave this lesson to teach ME more than Sonshine! LOL! :D


  1. Hi there! I really enjoyed reading your blog and your reflections! I just want to say - don't let awards faze you, and if you are not bothered, most of the time, the kids wouldn't be bothered too! Our children tend to want to do things to impress us. My older girl has the same problem as Sonshine - she is a strong achiever academically and in her CCAs but is just not quiet. And it used to irk me (and her!) that teachers always feedback that she is very quiet. So, my girl and I had lots of conversations about the power of introverts. Now that she is 12, she is comfortable in her own skin. I am sure Sonshine boy will shine in his own way! Hang in there!

    1. Thanks for the encouragement! You are right. We only just started. There's many more good opportunities ahead! :D