Saturday, July 16, 2011

Junior Genetics

One of the challenges of having two full time working parents is finding time for all of the enriching activites that kids seem to require these days. One might argue that children don't really need to learn kung fu, ballet, softball, Chinese calligraphy, flower arranging and soccer at the age of five, but as we all know, this is the norm these days. In fact even when I was a kid my parents signed us up for lots of extra curricular classes. I took ballet, modern dance, brownies (girl scouts for american readers), flute, piano, band, swimming (stroke classes and synchronized) and horseriding as a kid and I enjoyed it all very much. I would like to offer the same to our kids, but most of these classes are in the early afternoon, not conducive to working parents schedule. Preschool offers music class, soccer and zumba which helps assuage the guilt a little.  I confess though that I do not know what zumba is. I must be the only mother on the planet who hasn't tried it.

We can manage one activity a week. When geekygirl was small I braved a music class. We toyed with ballet and with swimming on the weekends, but have now settled on gymnastics. This is for purely practical reasons. The gym is 2 minutes from home, and on the route home from preschool, and they have concurrent classes for toddler boys and five year old girls. I leave work early every Thursday and sometimes we even make it to class on time and remember the bag with their gym clothes in.

Both kids love it. I enjoy watching them too. It soothes away the stresses of a work day to sit and watch the kids concentrate on their tumbling and jumping, looking so proud of themselves when they achieve something spectacular, like a swing or a somersault over one of the bars. I have noticed improvements in Geekygirls strength and coordination since she has started the class too.

Geekyboy also seems to have fun with it. He can't, however, pronounce the word 'gymnastics'. He calls it "genetics".

I can't help but wonder what other parents must think of me when he proudly announces that he is going to genetics class. I'm secretly waiting for an over eager mum or dad to ask me where one can sign a three year old up to study advanced biology.