PARENTS, WHY THE RUSH?.
I attended a public primary school which had classes ranging from Primary 1 to Primary 6.
My teachers noticed my brilliance in Primary 4, so I was asked to join my seniors in Primary 6 for my Primary School Leaving Certificate Exam. By that, I would jump two classes and go to secondary school two years before my mates.
I wrote my mother to inform her. Her reply was simple: don't do it. She said I would miss the syllabi and the processes of Primary 5 and Primary 6 which would affect me in secondary school.
Whenever I remember her response, I always wonder at her wisdom. For your information, my mother is not literate; she never went to school. So how did she arrive at what she advised me?
Simple. My mother understands the importance of process. She believes once a stage is jumped, one meets the consequences in the future.
I later understood her point. When I got to Primary 5, my teachers called me again and gave me the same offer of writing my terminal exam. I refused, giving them my mother's explanation.
Now, when I got to Primary 6, I was to be made the Senior Boy, but there was a consensus that I was too tiny a boy to control that large school, so I was made the Assistant Senior Boy, while another boy, huge and also brilliant, was made the Senior Boy.
I learnt a lot in that final year. Apart from being the Assistant Senior Boy, I was the Class Captain of my class arm. I was exposed to leadership and human management. By the virtue of my closeness to teachers and the management, I learnt terminologies and skills related to official positions and managements.
Inter alia, I supervised the contributions towards our final-year project. Each student was to contribute 50 kobo per day. I was to collect the money, collate, and make it available to the committee in charge of the project. Whenever I pass by the school and see the signpost built with that money, I feel fulfilled.
I was only 12. Many of my mates were older. But I learnt how to relate with them all. I represented them in many competitions - drama, debates, and exams.
Eventually, I gained admission into a private secondary school. I discovered those who came from public schools felt inferior to those from private schools. I didn't have that complex at all. You know why? I had an exposure that many of them didn't have. One, I completed my basic primary school studies. Two, I was old enough to understand that process and experience.
Thank God for my mother who insisted I go through the whole process. God bless Màámi.
I don't know who started the "double promotion" of a thing. It is wrong. Parents who derive joy in their children skipping classes don't understand the importance of process. You can't buy experience; you have to undergo a process to gather it. Why should your child start secondary school at 8?
Your child failed a class. And so? Let him/her repeat the class. It comes with an inestimable experience. Your child wants to study medicine, they offered him mathematics, and you all know he has all it takes to study medicine. Must he go to school this year? "Ehn...his mates will enter university before him." And so? Why the rush?
Why the rush in our generation? Where exactly are we going? Why are parents breeding immature adults all in the name of haste? Let your children be cooked with time. Stop breeding half-done children. If you raise them in a rush, they would not be able to withstand the complexity of life and they would crumble at every little challenge. They would be frustrated. To avoid the challenges, they would be ready to steal, kill, and destroy.
But if you train them with and in patience, they would learn a lot. They would be ripe for life. Their emotional intelligence would be high. Their social skills would be great. Even if they are early risers, let them know that brilliance and experience are not the same. And both are needed for life.
Parenting is meant to be a careful and purposeful adventure; it is not a competition. Pause and ask yourself, "Why the rush?"