me: “Remember what MGR said… sirithu vaazha vendum”
him: “yes but he also said pirar sirikka vazhndhidaadhey”
me: “but what MGR said that is of utmost importance and consequence is ….”
and the mmmim has become v. quiet. he is hanging on to my every word. he knows i am going to say something so life-changing and profound.
me:”chikkumangu chikku mangu chechapappa. chikkumangu chikku mangu chechapappa…”
the mmmim charged after me around the house with the pressure cooker’s lid. no he didnt. only because he was looking for a heavier paathram to throw at me.
apologies to non-Tam speakers.
on our India trip the children were on a TV overload, and I thought we needed to detox.
so its now almost 50 days of zero t.v. here…
it’s an experiment that has worked v.v.v. well…
1. the boys are playing together. more than ever.
2. imaginative play — increased in firstborn’s case. baby param – no sig. change
3. it used to be my magic switch to shush the kids if the phone rang and i wanted to chat or if i was cooking… no longer. now baby param takes all my calls. and i speed cook.
4. the worst part: even if they watched tv for half an hour a day… it’s after effect sorta creeped into the whole day. and turned into whining, not being able to play together, needing me to entertain, a part of their minds was still zoned out. i think.
5. tv in kl is better than the ad-infested mess that tv in chennai is. still. off is best.
our whole block is being whitewashed recently. and the kids erm. really got the hang of cycling (scooter cycle/two wheeler/ four wheeler) very very recently. so the walls bear scratchmarks from where the new learner meets wall and crashes. a lot of it looks like black crayon marks.
i didnt think it was a big deal…
the mmmim who found out 14 minutes ago. is going bombastic. (*can you hear him?*)
my take (since i cant seem to get in a word through to him):
walls are going to get dirty. ho-hum.
sooner rather than later.
and if there was a proper playground, nearby, i would take my kids there. but i went there once and we all came back with an itchy rash.
and why does it matter that the wall on the 13th floor look manicured.
no. i dont think my kids should be sitting at home watching tv (even though you do) instead of riding cycles in the corridor.
oh yes. it’s already happened at home — ( see there … baby param has drawn concentric circles that intersect) really it was an accident.
he says he’s going to pay for the whole re-whitewash… and hence forth corridor cycling in the corridors will be banned.
his schoolteacher asked all the children to meditate…
the children had to close their eyes and think of somethign they liked…
firstborn said he thought of “gold and pirates”
(how far at the very teetering edge of her tether the poor teacher must be, i often worry about)
“I am a pencil” by Sam Swope
It’s about a writer who teaches writing for third graders — who are poor immigrant children living in Flushing, USA,
and at the the parents teacher’s meeting… after meeting every mum, Korean, Indian, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Urdu-speaking…
he urges every parent to read to their child in their mother tongue…
it will make a difference to their imagination, to their writing and to the way they perceive life, he says.
we speak Tamil at home, watch Tamil movies, sing Tamil songs…
(we have 200 story books or more here in our home… but there is not one in Tamil. It dawns on me now that I have never ever read to fb in Tamil… )
firstborn wants to make a timetable. he says we are faffing off too much. he wants structure. he wants order. and he wants to learn the tamil alphabet.
all these years, i had time at my disposal. we could climb up 13 floors just because. we could play with the dust falling inside our house when a ray of sunlight comes in. we could walk downstairs and fetch a big stick fallen from a big tree whenever we liked. we could circle the corridor in bicycles at dusk. we could lie down and read library books in the morning.
but now young Mr. Type A, poised with a sharp pencil in his hand, is asking me how to spell the “study” in study time so that he can put it down on his timetable.
i may have lost the battle.
but i havent lost the war…
i am putting down tree-time (where we go down the road to see a tree, we are already friends with)
i am putting down singing aloud (i was too afraid to teach…)
The mmmim is putting down ‘teach baby param something new’ (this is a double-edged sword, methinks)
as we are all sitting down together, i was thinking of asking you if there is anything else you think should be there in his daily time table?