Category Archives: Child Development/Education of Children

I Totally Get You

Lesson learned, by the, teacher, in the interactions he has with the school children, translated…

As school is out, waiting for the parents to pick up their young, I’d passed the tuitions collected inside an envelope to the older sister of a pair of young siblings, and, the younger brother’s hand reached for it to grab the envelope, neither refusing to budge.  Out of reflex, I’d said, “the older, why don’t you let your younger brother have it?”, she’d gazed at me with those, innocent eyes, and, let go, unwillingly; and the younger brother who got his way gloated, cunningly, grabbed a hold of the, envelope.

The little girls who were watching the interactions, all started getting loud, and of them, the oldest girl, extended that hand in empathy, patted the girl on her shoulders, told her, “I totally get it, I completely, do!”

That stunned me a bit, with that apologetic mean, I’d looked over at the young girl, and, curiously asked the girl who’d patted her classmate’s shoulders, “aren’t you the youngest?  How could you understand what she was going through?  Don’t all your sister let you have the things that you wanted?”  “No!  Whenever my younger cousins came over, I’d had it, coming!”, she’d given me a response that I never expected to hear.  Then, all around us, the words came coming at us, “Yeah, not only did we have to let the younger kids have our toys, when the older kids come by, the adults tell us, ‘older brother doesn’t come here all the time, just let him have it.’  There are, more toys than one, and yet why did he have to want to play with the one I’m playing with?”, can’t believe, that the envelope with the tuition caused a ton of upsets, all rushing out like the waterfalls.

Or maybe, it’s because we’d been adults, too long, we’d forgotten, how it’d felt being, taken; or maybe, because of the busyness of life, we’d hoped to, swiftly, get through the nitty-gritty, the unimportant matters, using our self-righteous fairness, but rough ways, to resolve the issues between the young children, disregarding, how everybody is a complete being, that being this careless can, cause someone to feel, hurt, or even, damaged.

I’d watched the group of young children in silence, and, skimmed every face, and came to understand, that hidden underneath all these innocent faces, there were, the icebergs of their own, separate, emotions.  I’d felt really awful, that in the moment’s time, I’d only cared about the younger boy’s emotions, and not paid enough attention to the older girl’s, I didn’t know how I can, effectively, help the young girl who’s an older sister who probably, felt, hurt.

Or maybe, I could, give the envelope with the tuition to the older girl while her younger brother still sat in class.  Or maybe, I should wait until the parents arrived, then, hand off the bag, instead of having the kids, take the envelopes home to give to their, parents.  Or maybe I should, put their separate tuitions in separate, envelopes, and hand it to them separately……………but, too late, I shouldn’t keep going now, shouldn’t blame myself too much.  Or maybe, I should, allow these, tiny, upsets to, ferment in the minds of these kids, to saturate on their, own.  Or maybe, that’s the price that every child must pay, in order, to, become, adults.

And so, this just showed, how the careless act of the adult can easily, DAMAGE a young child, and as adults, we are usually, too, careless, not paid enough attention to the children’s feelings, because most of times, we have our own problems that we’re having troubles dealing with on our own, so, these things, they happen, and, we don’t get our, do-overs in them.

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The Purposes of the Extracurricular Courses, Getting My Child to Explore Her Interest Profiles

How the parents “groomed” their young offspring, to prepare him to ready to take over the business, with a total disregard of the child’s interest profiles, and this is just, AWFUL, for this kid, and the parent is, really B-A-D too, pushing his own young, to ready him to take over the family business!  Translated…

My husband’s best friend, S is a businessman, he’d jam-packed his schedules, lived and worked, with a business suit on him, drove the imported vehicles to the business meetings, the wages he’d brought in, is probably, multiples from the total my husband and I are, making.  S and his wife has a pair of daughters, we’d gone out on family dates with our children outdoors or to travel; the children who are around the same ages, busied themselves in play, while the adults, we’d, shared the ups and downs of work, and of raising our own children.

One day, S went to a mechanic close to our home to get a tune-up, and asked my husband out for coffee, and my husband took our four-year-old out with him, as the fathers are conversing, my son busied himself with the blocks, S started commending my husband for how focused our son was, and how he was able to, stay at a task a long time, then, started ranting on how his own wife signed their son up for many of the toddler classes, as she saw the recommendations of the classes for young children online, she’d rushed to sign him up.  Recently, Mrs. S took their daughter to the classes on “knowing how to manage our emotions”, and “dessert making” courses, and on the weekends, they’d went out, and it’d made him confused, and he’d felt, helpless of the situation.

As my husband mentioned this to me, I’d first felt, that Mrs. S was taxing herself out, and couldn’t understand why she was doing that, and I wasn’t at a place to comment on the matter, but I’d wondered, what, does S, a father believe, to be classes fitting for his own young?  Turns out, that S found the values of a friend who’d owned a family business, who’d made his own son stay by him at the office, to watch how the adult operated the things, to talk about managing the company with him, learn the lessons in managing a business with the adult, from a young age, the child got a first-hand experience in internship, to know what’s going on in the business.

illustration from UDN.com

S believed, that this, was what his own son should be learning, that the rest is, pointless, there’s no need to spend any extra money on the other courses, or to take up the talents of music, or art, or dance, etc., etc.

As my husband finished telling me, I’d felt that chill inside my mind, is what they’re learning useless or not, such a heavy subject!  Thinking about it, I am, a mom who’d, “made” my children take a ton of “useless” classes too then.  Recalling, I’d taken my daughter to dance lessons, piano, performance art, sports, to the concerts, and from time to time, we’d signed up for the pottery courses too; from when she started speaking, and can express herself, we’d started, discovering the activities that she was into, that she didn’t, object in doing.

This summer, I’d signed us up for astronomy camp, it’d started up her interest in the Greek myths of the constellations, and the locations of the constellations, we’d gone to the library, checked out a series of books on the mythologies, and astronomy too, to help her answer the inquiries about the subject of astronomy that I’m no expert in.

On the weekends, my daughter would play the music of Chopin or Vivaldi that she wanted to listen to; as the exams ended at school, she would make a wish to go see the performances of drama groups, or to sign up for a arts-and-crafts course, or maybe, this is how, at her young age, she finds relaxation from.

Looking back at all of these, I’d asked: then, how do I feel about all of these?  Using my favorite writer, Lee’s words, “Arts is the attempts of humans in communication with God, in the vast openness of nature, the darkened streets at night, a home for those souls wandering lost.  It’s a realm of freedom, the planet that’s surrounded by the oceans, are all of us, humans, created, equal.”

I’d never considered, “if it’s useful” to choose for my children, their extracurricular activities.  If in the world of adults, we’d need coffee to help reduce the annoyances of work, and needed a bit of alcohol, when we hit the troughs in our lives; then, for the kids, the music, the stories, the pictures, the pottery, the outdoors activities, we’d exposed them to, in the process of their getting into the activities, they are being, inspired, moved, and led, this is, paving that invisible path in my daughter’s life, to help her tap into the activities to busy herself with when in the future, she feels alone, or bored—or to exercise until she’s completely drained, then return back to her work post, refreshed; or to rush to a concert, a play, and after a good cry, she will know, that she’d understood other own life, a little more than before.

This was the openness she will have in her life, like how Lee told try to communicate with the heavens up above, or with ourselves, to start off a conversation that leads us into the unknowns, no matter who you may be, this process of introspection, of self-discovery, is equal and free.  That, is what I, believe, it’s what as a mother, I want to, instill, into my own daughter’s, life.

Everything we discovered, may be useless, it just makes her, happy.  But, happiness, is quite, useful, in the, grander scheme of, life.

And so, here, we have two sets of parents, one who gets his own young into the programs that he believes will be useful for his own young son’s future (hello, hello, hello???  He’s just a K-I-D!!!), and every step the father planned out for his son, was “grooming” him to take over the company, with a total DISREGARD of how his own young may NOT be interested in his own field of work.

Then, there’s the mother of the friend of this man, who’d exposed her own young to a ton of varied activities, as the kid hadn’t shown any specific interests yet, and this other young girl, has a fuller spectrum of experiences of variety of activities than the son of the hotshot businessman!

Whose child would you want to be?

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The Elementary School Age Student Used a Craft Knife, Held His Classmate at Knifepoint Awhile Ago in Hsinbei City

Nobody got her/his neck slashed, this time, but next time, who knows, the blade may still be in the knife, and, blood will be, spilled them, and this happened in a classroom, with an adult, the teacher, is negligent, at least, for NOT making sure, that improper horse play doesn’t happen under her watch!  Off of the Newspapers, translated…

The Department of Education Intervened to Counsel, to Enforce the Moral Education of the Elementary Schools as Well as Enforcing the Laws of Safety in the Schools

In an elementary school in Hsinbei City awhile ago, there was a student, during the break periods, took a knife, held it against his classmate’s neck, the victim student’s parents were unsatisfied how the school handled the matter, posted the incident on the local Facebook groups, demanded that the other child’s parents start disciplining their own young, and demanded that the school instructors get tougher on disciplining the students.  The Department of Education stated, that they will have the school counsel the students continually and they will enforce the education of moral responsibilities, and the law too.

At break period on Tuesday this week, a twelve-year-old male student from an elementary school in Hsinbei City was horseplaying with the classmate, he’d picked up a craft knife, held it against a fellow student’s neck, it’d thrilled the other students around.  As the victim student’s parents learned, they got furious, and started calling out on the local FB group: “Parents of the child who’d allowed him to bring the craft knife to school, DO watch your own young better, and the principal of the school, the teachers too, man up, don’t wait until a student gets severely injured, and then, make the useless apologies.”

The parent also wrote, “to the parents of the child who brought that craft knife to school, DO view your child’s behaviors more seriously, I got all the time, and I’ll wait for you at the principal’s office, don’t run from this.”

as I didn’t know better can no longer be used as a valid excuse here! Illustration from online

The principal of the school stated, because the instructor worried that as the students were using the crafts knife, they risk cutting themselves, that’s why the instructor had collected the knife right after art class, and, the knife that the child grabbed didn’t have the blade in it.  Because the male student couldn’t find a more proper way to interact with his peers, and the school will continue to counsel this male student.

The Department of Education stated, that the male student, during the break period, when he was playing with the other students, held the knife used in art class close to the student’s neck for close to two seconds, the blade was already out, and as the other students reminded the instructor, the instructor collected the knife without the blade back.  As the school had been notified, they’d called up the parents, and told them what had happened, and discussed the means of counseling needed for the students, to avoid incidents like this from recurring.

The school already had the counselors stepping in, to help the male student learn in class better, to help him relate to his classmates in a proper and safe manner, at the same time, reminded the students, if they find something that’s not quite right, to immediate tell their classroom teachers.

And so, this, is what happens, as children horse played with one another, and this time, thankfully, nobody was injured, or killed, but, next time, it may not be as lucky, and the instructor, the school is at best, negligent, in not instructing these young school age children what is proper and improper ways of playing with each other, besides, the kids are modeling the behaviors, from what they encounter on the internet, in the news media, on the soaps, there’s NO way of preventing that NO scene of violence enter into their, eye sights, and so, as adults, you can only, make sure, that you keep the sharp objects out of these kids’, reaches.

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A Child from the Distant, Stars…

A child from the distant, stars, for some reasons unknown (‘cuz fate’s, way too cruel, a joker, maybe???), her/his “spaceship” had, CRASHED onto the earth…

A child from, the distant, stars, finding it hard, to live down here, on the, planet, knowing, that the far, far away galaxy is, calling her/his name, s/he tried to, talk to those, extra-terrestrial, beings, to connect, but had been, experiencing difficulties, since the start of, preschool or was it, kindergarten.

with great concentration, engaged in the activities that are, considered interesting to no one else but, her own, self…photo from online

And before long, this child from the distant, stars, is outcasted, by those who are, from the, same mold as, “ordinary”, those who are, “normal”…

A child from, the distant stars, will one day, fly up, to the ends of, a distant, galaxy, where s/he will, find others who are, just like her/him, but until, those, nonexistent wings of her/his, start popping out of her/his back, s/he is, tied to, the grounds of this, god damn, planet.

And, no matter how much this child from the, distant stars, longed to fit in, with the rest of, the “general population”, s/he will always feel like, the odd one, out!

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Pretend Play Should Be Studied in Children From a Younger Age — Neuroscience News

When it comes to pretend play, infants perform interactional patterns with elements of pretense a lot earlier than previously believed. Researchers say pretend play should be considered an interpersonal feature of cognitive development, and not an end product.

Pretend Play Should Be Studied in Children From a Younger Age — Neuroscience News

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Pretend Play Should Be Studied in Children From a Younger Age — Neuroscience News

When it comes to pretend play, infants perform interactional patterns with elements of pretense a lot earlier than previously believed. Researchers say pretend play should be considered an interpersonal feature of cognitive development, and not an end product.

Pretend Play Should Be Studied in Children From a Younger Age — Neuroscience News

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The Child, Hiking UP that Mountain Range, isn’t, Problematic

How this bright kid got labeled as a troublemaker in class, on the education of the children, translated…

In the heat of the summer, the group of us good friends met up for a camping trip on Fushou Mountain.  The day after the tents were set up, the Y family planned to take the kids to trek the Hehuan Creek Trails, and maybe, to climb the western peak of the Hehuan Mountains.  Y and the family of three children had already, hiked many tall mountains.  The outdoors camping became natural to them, I was so in awe of them.  The following afternoon, the family returned back to campsite, the painful calls or screams.  What’s even more surprising, Y mom told me that it was her son’s wish to hike up the Hehuan Mountains.

Y’s son is enter the sixth grade, can be active, or he can sit quietly, he is excellent in everything he does, the swim competitions, the fluent Taiwanese speech competitions, or helping to set up the tents at the campsites, it’s, quite impressive.  This introverted, mature-than-his-years young lad made me curious, and so, as Y mom told me that this camping trip/hike was the older son’s wish, I was even more in awe; but Y’s face fell ashen, she’d told me two things, which made her worried, proud, as well as, helpless too.

The homeroom instructor wrote on her older son’s report card, “Very intelligent, can’t follow the rules of the group.  Often stated his ideas, and if he continues, there may be a chance he might turn bad.” As I’d heard I was, shocked, as well as, confused.  Y mom told me what her son’s homeroom instructor stated: when the older son is between classes, he’d hollered to his classmates to play cards; as the instructor explained the term, “lingering on” and as the teacher added the explanations, the older son blurted out, “Durians taste great!”; during the class meetings, the instructor would call out the seating numbers of those who’d misbehaved: two, three, four, five………the older son then told, “You’re one short for a straight flush!”, the whole class burst into, laughter.

Y mom asked her son about all of these, and demanded that he put up his playing cards, and asked, why he’d not played Chinese chess like he used to from before?  He’d responded back, the classmates always lose to him too fast, and he couldn’t, find a good enough opponent to play with after awhile.  And the homeroom teacher stated that he didn’t follow the rules was because he felt that the uniform made him uncomfortable because of the material, he’d taken it off, hidden it in his drawers and as the teacher started grilling him, he’d, pulled it out, and put it on.

Y mom sighed, started telling me the interlude of how her older son hiked up the Shihmen Mountain with the grandparents; that day, he’d felt like it was only a stroll for him, that he’d not had enough exercises, and on their ways back, they passed by the Hehuan Pointy Mountain, he’d begged his parents to climb it, that it takes about thirty minutes.  Y’s mom hesitated, and the son thought it was an okay from her, then, ran off.  Y’s mom started losing it, kept going to and from the hiking entrance and the parking lot, trying to find her son, and finally, she saw that tiny shadow, leaping up and down on the way, coming back down the mountains, her son, she got so furious, stopped talking to him on the way home.  This trip on the western peak of Hehuan Mountain, was originally a punishment, wanted him to think about what he’d done wrong, then, she will decide whether or not to ground him.

I’d understood what’s behind Y’s mom’s helplessness, as instructors, how would we not know, the trials of, taking care of a class full of, students.  And, as a mother, trying to guide her own son to help him shine with his best traits, it’s also, quite difficult, to get it right, there’s no standardized answer to that.

illustration from UDN.com

That leaping up and down, like a monkey on the trees, is a little boy whom she’d, held the hand of, introduced to nature, that older boy who loved the land, nature, a healthy lad.  He too, is on the treks to, growing up, and there would be the forks in the roads, the passages that led him into the forest that made him, distracted; also, the untraveled pas that called out to him to venture towards; as well as the valleys, the creeks, with the mosses that made the rocks slippery, that he may trip and fall on.  He has to be able to hold that quieted conversation with himself, needs to develop a sense of judgment for right and wrong, these enriching trips is raising a kid who has the big dreams of hiking up mountains, taller than the ones he’d hiked up from before, how can this be bad?  Walking on the ridges, seeing the large mountains, and the clouds, how can a child like this, behave crazily?

And because we are tiny, we’d, gained that humbleness, that was the very first lesson we learned, as we first, walked into the mountains and the, forests.

If the instructors are willing to take the time to understand the other sides of the children, listening to them, try to understand them, help in communication, guiding by dialogue, maybe, the instructors will find, that this young child who’d used his tiny steps, step by step, hiking up the large mountains, isn’t misbehaving at all, he has a steady pace, and the eyes that gazed into, the distance, a gem that’s, glowing, just like how his skin was tanned by the sun, walking on the ridges of the mountains he’d, trekked.

And so, this is on how a child is, misunderstood, this kid has a different style of learning, and the child didn’t fit in to the school’s curriculum, probably because he’s too intelligent, and catches on too quickly, which is why he’d become, disruptive, bursting out those comments in class, which led the instructor to believe that he was, misbehaving, but he really wasn’t, he’s just, longing for something that’s, more challenging to him, he’s, way ahead of the rest of his class. 

A kid like this can easily gets SCREWED over by the current education systems, because there’s NO custom-made curriculum to fit HIS learning interest profiles!

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The Crack of My Bedroom Door

How this, grandmother, helped preserved the dreams of her young granddaughter’s childhood memories, by allowing her to stash the items she’d sent through the crack in the door to her room, translated…

After I was done with the chores, I’d shut my bedroom door, so I can, lean against the chair, to read the articles of the writer, Xi, then, the rustling noises had come in, distracted me, turned out, it was, a page of the calendar that’s, made its way in, from the crack in my door, it was, dancing in the wind.  I can’t help but smiled, picked it up, and, set it down where it originally was.

My young granddaughter who’s about to enter into the first grade, is a chatty little thing, chimed all day long, begged the adults to answer her inquiries of “Why”, and she could, always, BREAK the bottom line of our, patience, and, my door shut meant my declarations of, “Do NOT Disturb”, and yet, kids will be, kids, the adults’ rules, they would, always, try to, break them, and, glad that they’d done it.

The young child didn’t have her own space, and the toy bins had been, stuffed too full, and, she’d, set her mind, on using some of my, closet space for storage.  Everything her parents wouldn’t allow her to keep, she’d, shoved them into my space, especially those before-school exam papers, the torn off calendar pages, the ads from McDonald’s……basically anything with the blank page on the back, she’d loved, because, she’d enjoyed doodling, and, as she’d finished drawing on the page, she’d, made them into a volume too.  All these things considered as garbage by us, she’d, cherished them like they were, some, priceless, possessions, and I can only, be more, tolerant of that.

The young child had, tried stashing her cherished items here and there, and, the three-centimeter crack on my door, became, a secret transport portal: the childish doodles and drawings, her favorite snacks, the Barbie with the broken leg, the sticker she received for her doctors’ visits, anything, you can name.  seeing that page of torn off calendar that’s entering into the crack of my door, I can’t help but sighed, that there’s only, a very short period of time when the childhood dreams stayed, intact, because, there’s signs of maturation of her in her eyes, every day now.

This is the realizations of an adult, noting just how, precious childhood is, that once it’s gone, it’ll be, gone for good, and, this young girl has a perfect “secret hiding place” for all the things she cherished and held dear to her heart and her mind, in her, grandmother’s, room, through that, “secret portal”: the tiny crack on the door!

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The Instructors Who’d Bullied, Sexually Harassed the Students in the Preschools, the Government Thinking about Putting Their Identities Out Permanently

The way the government came up with, to protect the younger generations of children from getting VICTIMZED by the predatory instructors, but, will this work?  We will just have to, wait and see, won’t we???  Off of the Newspapers, translated…

The Department of Education previewed the rough drafts of the “offense of breaking the laws of childcare in the early childhood education environment”, if there are the major behaviors of corporal punishment, bullying, sexual harassment, etc., etc., etc., then the early childhood educators shall be listed by names and the preschool, kindergarten where the instructors worked will be publicized; if the crimes are not as severe, like the buses being used too long, then, the schools will get blacklisted for three years.

The parenting groups believed, that the parents have the right to know the past operating means of the schools as well as the instructors the schools hired in the past; the All-Education Association believes, that it’s debatable if the permanent listing of the schools had broken the rights of privacies and such. 

The Department of Education recently had amended the caretaking laws of early childhood education, the early childhood educators will be identified by names, and the schools they worked in will be publicized permanently.

And, if the schools didn’t have the certificates to operate, or had gone on its own setting up the childcare programs, or, not complied to the rules.

Yang also mentioned that as the schools hired the personnel, they’d had to check with the online registries of inappropriate instructors, and because the system of registry is based off of the individuals’ national identification numbers, the listed individuals will not have the opportunities to work in childcare after they change their names.

The National Education Action League’s parent department head, Wang told, that in the declines of birthrate, the parents would consider very thoroughly the schools they enroll their young into, and so, the unfitting preschools or kindergartens, the improper instructors should all be listed out in the open, this also serves as a warning to the instructors.  And, if a school is good or bad, the parents will hear by word-of-mouth, and can use that as the considerations when they select the preschools/kindergartens they place their children in.

And so, this will only work, if the schools don’t cover up, but chances are, no school will want to get blacklisted, and so, this still only just works in theory, but in application and practicality, I don’t believe it’s going to work out that well at all.

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They Didn’t Mean to Blink on Purpose

Children with special needs, that were, mistaken for misbehaving, because there’s not much education of the world on it!  Translated…

“Stop winking!  It’s ugly!” when my child was in his second year of kindergarten, we’d noted how he would start winking uncontrollably.  At first, we took him to the ophthalmologist, had a series of tests, everything was normal, and we were referred to the pediatrics department, and learned, that his winking was due to Tourette’s, which causes his nervous system to give off the signals uncontrollably, which caused his twitching and winking.

As the neurologist made the diagnosis, because my son was still young, and it wasn’t that serious, the neurologist felt no need to medicate him, suggested that we use the exercise routines, establishing a normal schedule, and behavior modification techniques to reduce the behaviors of twitching constantly.  We’d worked hard, to understand this originally strange-to-us illness, tried not to blame our son for his inability to control the twitching behaviors, because blaming him for it, can cause him more pressures, and he would start to twitch even more often.  For this, we’d discussed it with his school instructors, she used that professionalism, consoled with us, that there’s a higher population of children with Tourette’s now, a lot of the school teachers are more experienced, and will help our son learn normally as possible, to assimilate him into the group of his classmates.

One out of three children with Tourette’s will reduce the prevalence of their twitching behaviors by age eighteen on their own, only a-third of children will continue to twitch into adulthood, but the symptoms are reduced.  After all the means, all the measures were, taken, our son started getting better, and the occasional twitch, became, less, noticeable.  The path of parents of special needs children is this constant learning, never stopping to support our own young, I hope all the children with Tourette’s can have every help they need, and grow up happy.

And, this is how having a special needs child in your home helps you grow, adapt to the various situations, and, thankfully, this young boy has teachers who’d been educated enough, to give him the positive help that he needed, and helped reduced his parents’ stresses, instead of just slapping that bad kid label on him.

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