I remember when my own kids were two and three. They learned so fast and so much that my psychologist sister asked if she could test their IQ. Well, why not! It was obvious their intelligence was way beyond normal so I encouraged my sister and anxiously awaited the results that would show just how advanced they really were.
Only the results didn’t show any great achievement; in fact, the results showed average intelligence in both kids. What? Are you kidding me? Of course, I know now that measured intellect is not indicative of future success and since both kids have found their niche and are successful in life, I venture to say the tests were wrong and my kids are indeed off the charts! (Yes, I AM a proud mama.)
Here’s my observation: God has gifted us with amazingly incredible minds that have boundless limits for learning and youngsters have such great curiosity and “plastic” minds that they just soak up everything. So what seems so out of the ordinary to us is really just the way an extraordinary God designed our children to be.
Case in point: my very cool grandson Konnor. Very cool because today when he wanted to go swimming in his little pool, he had a very specific dress code in mind: red swimsuit adorned with pictures of colorful surfboard, a tee shirt with dolphins on it, finished off by his ultra-cool Spiderman sunglasses. The look was perfect as you can see a bit from the pix.
At one point Konnor steps out of the pool and onto the handle of his bucket. Without missing a beat he says “Oh, that’s the amphibian.” What? Did I hear him correctly? Amphibian? Did he really say that? I turned to his mommy and asked if he knew the word. She smiled, shook her head yes, and said “Yup, it’s from his Creepy Crawlies dvd.” This dvd that Konnor is obsessed with features bugs, reptiles, and amphibians.
So I said to Konnor, “Do you know what an amphibian is?” And he replied, “A frog.” WOW. Really? Then I asked if a toad was an amphibian and he correctly responded, “Yes.” I could hardly believe he knew a big word like “amphibian” and also knew what it meant. This grandma was very impressed.
And while I was impressed with Konnor’s knowledge, I was even more impressed with the God who created us to be curious and to have such wonderful minds. The potential in our little ones is limitless and makes me want to nurture and encourage a lifestyle of learning.
This past weekend Konnor’s daddy took him to a reptile show at a local pet store – what a great reinforcement to everything he’s been learning with his favorite dvd. There are all sorts of places we can venture with our grandkids: next time you stop at Wal-mart, swing by the pet section and watch the fish swimming around; stop in at the local library for preschool story time; take a walk and talk about the insects and birds you see along the way; bake cookies to develop math skills and learn how to follow a plan.
And have fun. When our little ones enjoy the learning experience, no doubt they’ll hunger for more.