Yesterday Chellu gave a glimpse of her dedication & studiousness especially when it comes to doing things she loves. In the evening the girls were busy painting Diyas for Dhanteras. I was in the kitchen busy cleaning and I heard a loud cry from Chellu. A glass bottle of white paint had broken while she was trying to open it and cut a deep gash on the fleshy part of her left hand behind the thumb. After the initial taking care of the wound when I asked her to rest she insisted on continuing with the activity. I left it at that and went about doing my chores. When I returned back after 5 mins or so to check on her , I was shocked at what I saw. The wound was profusely bleeding and Chellu was painting her Diyas with gr8 focus. I was really taken back! When asked she said that it didn't bother her and that she very much wanted to finish painting the diyas. Wow!
I've heard many folks say that unless kids attend school and face the pressure of competition or the exam system they are never going to develop focus, studiousness, sincerity, attention etc..But my kids have always exhibited these qualities time & again from a young age. Playing with blocks or play-dough,doing puzzles, painting , art & craft projects, cutting veggies , helping out in household chores, nature-based acitvity are some of the activities that hook on my children for a long period of time. And I've always been amazed at their attention span and their focus. Its like they forget everything else including hunger! I'm sure this is the case with other kids too as long as we allow them to do what they really like. We tend to term studiousness and such other qualities from the point of "studying" which essentially means the Rs ...its just a Q of changing our perspective again. I remember one time during the IVC co-op class..there were no other kids and Chellu sat through painting the pots for 2 hrs straight. That was last year when she was almost a year younger..I had gotten bored but she had not. Her focus was stunning..so much was going on around her but she refused to take her eyes off the activity..
Im starting to see this trait with Kunju too..2 weeks back while doing the 3 little pigs activity she wanted to build herself houses for the 3 pigs and she did so diligently without anyone's help. I was in the kitchen while Chellu was coloring her house ( again sitting thru one long session)..it would have taken Kunju a good 25 mins or so but she was completely engrossed in it. It was obvious that she had put in a lot of thought cause the end result was stunning! She had indeed built 3 very different looking houses with lotsa attention to detail..the brick house even had a clearly visible chimney. Yesterday when Chellu had gone down to play with Aayush , Kunju was totally engrossed in trying out different dresses for her doll..i had observed that she was doing it for a good 35 mins or so..She didn't want anyone near her.
Another aspect to this focus is their increasing self-reliancy. They seem to need minimum instructions and they can seem to take on the activity completely by themselves. I remember last sunday when they wanted to make a greeting card for my aunt's bday. They were given the chart paper & I left for a long shower. Chellu had decided what she wanted to do and went about completing the entire thing all by herself and it was quite a bit of work given the fact that the greeting card was a huge one. She had selected the " I can draw animals" books and had copied a bunny, lion, dog & turtle along with writing " Happy birthday " & " May god bless you"! This also included completion of coloring the background and adding borders to the pages! With zero help from me..
Self-reliance, focus, sincerity ..When these happen with no carrots or sticks or fear or compulsion or aping ( the other person is doing it so I have to do it) then it is "really" happening. One doesn't have to send their children to school to attain these . And does school really flower these qualities in our children? Carrots & sticks & peer pressure seem to be the dominating factors.
I sincerely believe that we don't have to send kids to school to attain the above qualities. One just needs to trust in the divine intelligence and the divine design that our kids come with and be patient. Everything unfolds gradually at its time & space....Beautifully ...