Why I Don’t Gauge My Kids Based on Grades

Why I Don’t Gauge My Kids Based on Grades

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When I became a mom and my son started going to school, I already created a mindset that I wouldn’t push them to get skyrocketing grades. What matters to me is that they learn, they do what they do best, and that their social behaviour develops properly.

Why am I writing this post?

I know some parents would push and sometimes force their kids to get good grades. While there is nothing wrong about having great grades on the report card, I sometimes feel that as parents, we should allow our kids to enjoy school, most especially in the first years.  Forcing them to get straight As at the age of 4 or 5 is never going to be fun! Except if your kids really show the interest in such. 

Where am I coming from?

Let’s backtrack a bit and you know, give you an idea where I am coming from.

I used to be grade conscious. I remember being one of the top students in the class, crying over an 86/95 score in an exam. It wasn’t healthy. For me, my ultimate goal was to get good grades, and not to learn. Obviously, that’s not a good motivation.

Ask yourself again, “Why would you go to school?”

If you answered, to get good grades’, I sincerely think that it is a shallow reason.

Going back,  I got tired of it and come 3rd grade, I was not included in the honor list.

Damn!

For a 9 year – old, the world shattered.

And then 4th Grade Started 

For some reason, I felt that I was quite mature for my age. At the age of 10, I told myself that I wouldn’t force myself to get high grades. Instead, I decided NOT to stress myself on academics and just focus on things where I am good at.

I was good at speaking and singing. I have bagged awards year after year (and I think my batchmates were already tired of hearing me sing). Kasi even the national anthem during the flag ceremony, ako na yung kumakanta!  Anyway, I even represented my school in big speaking competitions and won. Trust me, it wasn’t your usual competition where you’d already know your standing. It was hard and it was months of preparation. I knew I was good at it, so I worked my arse!  Yabang noh?

Point is, I knew back then that the school is much more than Science and Math or whatever subjects we had. I was a firm believer that we have different kinds of intelligence. Mine was a bit more on the artsy side, you know – music, linguistic and interpersonal intelligence. Sometimes I wonder why I got in the Science Curriculum section. Brad, yung mga classmates ko sobrang talino! Haha

I don’t want to make this post very long because I have a call in 30 minutes and I need to finish my reports. Again, I’ve seen parents getting sad because their kids were not able to make it in the top list. But for me, we have to show them that grades are not the gauge for success. You have to set an example that you believe in them, regardless if they get a 100 or a 75.  For me, the traditional schools can measure a minute part of one’s intelligence. But boy, the world is so big and your kids have so much to offer.

Observe.

Ask.

From there, see which areas your kids are good at. Then hone it.

Imagine this, they are improving their skills, while enjoying their childhood. Don’t torture them by feeding things which they are not yet ready to swallow. Although, I suggest that you help them create a study habit. Ah, which reminds me, can you help me with this one?

From your young WAHM, Love you, moms!

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A Lovely Staycation with Kids and Colleagues at Hotel 101

Finally, a short ‘free’ time to write for my blog. 🙂  I’ve been pretty busy these past few days (and will still be busy in the upcoming weeks)! But who’s complaining?

Let’s get the ball rolling, shall we?

I just wanted to share with you my weekend adventure with the kids and few of my colleagues from Rajah Travel .

It was a couple of weeks ago when I was invited by my boss to book a hotel room at Hotel 101 in Pasay (I’ll make a separate post for my review). I was a bit hesitant because I was still in the process of moving in and I had to save moolah for a whole bunch of things. However it all changed when she told me that we could get a special rate – oh the perks of working for a travel agency. Plus, I asked a good friend and colleague to come with me so we can share the bill. Ha! Am I smart or what?

Kidding aside, I thought that it would be a great opportunity to relax, spend time with my kids and also revive my fluctuating social life. It was actually a brilliant plan.

Come Saturday, I packed our things and prepared for the battle. I say battle because I decided not to bring a car and just used the public transportation. Imagine – me with a huge travelling bag and 2 kids!

If you are planning to use public transportation for a long journey and you have your kids with you, here are some of my tips:

  • Brief your kids. Tell them what to do when they get lost or your rules so you can already manage their expectations.
  • Make it a fun journey. It was my daughter’s first time to ride a bus and it was their first time to ride an MRT. I convinced them that it was sort of an adventure  – even if we all know it’s a pain in the arse to ‘commute’ within the metro.
  • Do not bring a lot of bags. I just brought 2 (1 for our clothes, 1 for my valuables). Carrying multiple bags is a big NO – NO for me because it would just add up to my worries.

Am I carrying it all?

Am I missing a bag?

Where did I put my wallet?

With just few bags, you can maximize your hands! 🙂

  • Bring snacks. I actually forgot ours so we ended up hungry for almost an hour. Bad!
  • Carry a truck load of patience. Need I say more?
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See? They were enjoying! While I, on the other hand, was carrying a heavy bag trying to pretend I’m fine 😀 

Our first stop was at Driven Marketing’s Office. I was so happy my co – brokers were so helpful in looking out for my kids as I had to interview one agent. 🙂

Off we go to Rajah Travel. Luckily, it was their Annual Physical Examination schedule and other parents brought their kids with them. Let’s just say, a part of the office became a playpen. That was a good way to kill time before we headed to Hotel 101.

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My colleagues/ friends with my kids. 🙂

My first consideration for a hotel is the pool. Thing is, kids don’t enjoy hotel rooms as much as adults do.  So having a pool is a must if you are planning a staycation. They pretty much enjoyed it and thank heavens my colleagues were helpful. They helped me carry my bags and dress up my kids, or just holding their hands while we cross the streets. These little things matter for a single parent like me, you know. 🙂

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We stayed at the pool side so I can still watch over my kids. 🙂 Thank you for being so considerate guys. 

When it was time to hit the sack (for the kids), we all went to our room to play cards. I learned fast, I must say! It was so much fun because 1) I learned something new 2) I was able to beat them a couple of times. Although, I will not share my stupid questions and tactics during the game of Pusoy Dos! Let this post be about my achievement. *Laughs*

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Strategy 101 

After checking out, we ate at Vikings – Thank you Ms. Stef!

I’m not a fan of buffet so I can’t make a decent review about it. It was just food for me – a whole lot of it. To cut it short, I don’t think I was able to maximize my stay. Don’t get me wrong. With this body, it is quite obvious that I eat a lot. It’s just that, I can’t eat much in such a short span of time.

Time to go home after a 3 – hour lunch!

I was dead tired and felt sick after another long bus and jeepney rides. I dozed off instantly upon reaching my apartment. My body is telling me that it’s not OK by making me feel pains here and there.  But it was all worth it. It was one of the best weekends so far and every money I spent didn’t matter. I don’t care repeating it again and I don’t mind tagging my kids along – even if that means I’d experience the same exhaustion.

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Looking fresh. I just had to take a shot because minutes after – I looked like a mess! 

Until our next hotel adventure.

Teaching Kids, The 90s Way – No Gadgets Allowed; Experiencing the Outdoors

Two weeks ago, my sister-in-law (out of the blue), asked us to bring the kids to Manila. She didn’t want us to go to the mall, (or at least spend the whole day there) but instead suggested that we visit Manila Zoo. My father, who is an inborn lover of outdoors, said we should have a picnic in Luneta Park. I, the geeky one, wanted to go to National Museum.  That was the plan. The following week, we gave it a shot.

Before the actual trip, I got so excited. I know that it’s going to be tiring, especially for us parents, but I was ready for another battle. The fact that my kids would experience something new and different (for their generation) heightened my excitement.

The BIG Day

The night before our trip, I decided to pack my children’s things. That way, I wouldn’t have to rush things in the morning. I’ll share with you the must-haves if you have toddlers.

  • Extra Clothes

Bring light tshirts and pants. I also brought their ‘pambahay’. That way, they could comfortably sleep in their PJs on our way home.  

  • Face Towels

They do perspire a lot, don’t you think? *laughs*

  • Wipes

So you can instantly clean up your little ones.

  • Alcohol

Because we hate germs!

  • Diapers

Need I say more?

  • Milk and Water

Lots of water!

  • Biscuits

Because they will lose a lot of energy.

  • Games

Or a never-ending playlist of nursery rhymes to get them out of boredom while on the road

  • Patience

As always. 🙂

Our first short stop was at Cash and Carry because my sister-in-law had to do some shopping for her bakery. You can like her facebook page here by the way. It’s Toothfairy. If you are in Batangas or somewhere near Lipa, you better try out her goodies.

Next was Manila Zoo (Entrance Fee for adult was PHP 100)

The last time I went here was, UGH, I was 3 years old. That was 23 years ago! It wasn’t that crowded because we went on a weekday. So I guess you have to schedule yours on a weekday too. Quite frankly, the zoo wasn’t that appealing to me. It wasn’t colorful as I have imagined it. Or perhaps, we are talking about the zoo 23 years ago! Nevertheless, the kids LOVE it. The elephant, the birds, the tigers, the monkeys, the fish! They are learning while having fun (without the help of gadgets). As I call it, we are teaching our kids the 90s way – kinda like how my parents did to us. We try to stimulate their brains without so much help of the technology we have now. That way, they will be more creative, and more resourceful.

I am not saying that iPads or android tablets are bad. They have their own benefits too. But I would like my kids to enjoy the outdoors as well. I want them to learn, while getting a bit muddy.  

After seeing the animals, we went to the zoo’s playground and well, as expected, they got pretty darn dirty. It was OK. I’m sure they can handle it.

Another benefit of taking them outdoors is that they meet new friends (not the virtual ones). Hence, honing their social skills.

It was getting a bit late so we decided to go to Luneta Park. We brought our ‘banig’, my sister-in-law’s cheesecake and my parents’ sandwiches which they prepared the night before.

My mom and dad looked like a young couple, it was so sweet! Maybe they were reminiscing their younger days because they kept on sharing their ‘date escapades’. Haha! The kids enjoyed the park’s vast area and ran like well…KIDS. It was such a nice view. ‘This is better than malls’, I thought.  At least they can stop saying, ‘Mommy, I want to buy this.’ *laughs*

Luneta Park is surprisingly nice. We tried their train and watched the dancing fountain, which by the way, my kids enjoyed. They were dancing too. 🙂

We were not able to go to the National Museum but we’d try our luck next time.

The day was extremely tiring, but it was all worth it. Try it too. I’m sure you and the whole family would enjoy every minute.

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BA is a young mom of 2 wonderful kids. She has high ambitions and would like to touch hearts. If you wish to write her a message, please send it to ba_isla@yahoo.com