Did you know that our word Kindergarten is from German? Literally translated it means Children Garden. The original Kindergartens were designed as a place for pre-school children to play and grow. The word itself pictures the natural growth of childhood in a nurturing environment.
I remember my year in Kindergarten as being so much fun. I did learn to read, and I’m pretty sure I learned to count, and I definitely remember all the cool toys we got to play with, the playground, and the fun performance we got to put on for our parents at the end. Oh, and I loved my teacher, she was so sweet, and learning was so much fun.
And that’s what I think of Kindergarten and all the pre-school years. They should be years of fun, wonder, and nuture. Years where my children grow without the pressures of growing up. Like little flowers in a garden. To be carefully tended, loved, taught, and encouraged to bloom. You can’t make a flower bloom any faster by opening it up yourself, you have to wait. And just like flowers, each child will bloom when they’re ready. And not all will bloom at the same time.
I’m reminded of this line from Mulan – My, my, what beautiful blossoms we have this year. But look, this one’s late! I bet when it blooms, it will be most beautiful of all” by Fa Zhou – I provide all the nuture, care, attention, training, teaching, etc. and my children will bloom when they’re ready.
So, let your children be children. Let them enjoy being children. Because childhood is so magical, and so short.