Aussie babies learning maths, english, foreign languages?!

Here’s an interesting article about Shichida Education, a Japanese method aimed at stimulating the brain development of babies - but what are your thoughts?

I think these things can get out of hand - children have enough pressure as it is. However, they seem to be aware of these concerns.

I think success depends on the child - no matter the program, really. I have 5 kids with varying abilities, yet I spent a lot of one-on-one time with each one from birth.

My youngest son goes to a special education unit for disabled children. They learn Spanish which is ridiculous. I’ve never even run into a Spanish speaker in my lifetime. One of the SSO’s (school support officer) told me the kids hate it, but they have to teach it because of government bureaucracy.

If my 9 year old can’t even say or read basic words, there’s no point in my showing him flashcards in Spanish or Chinese! Let’s start toilet training instead when he’s eventually ready for it. Let’s keep trying to teach him to write “S” for Stephen! I’d rather he learned to feed himself one day, than learn a language.

My 3rd & 4th children have trouble spelling, hate Japanese language etc…and turned out, er, average - even with our one-on-one time. Well, we did bond:)

2nd child is gifted in humanities and art. Okay, my time with her paid off, as she read and spelled at adult level by grade 2.

My eldest son would have loved this program! I noticed he could read the alphabet straight off the TV at 13 months, so I worked with him at home using flashcards etc. He could read before the age of two. At 4 he could count to 500+ and write & count the Japanese numerals I taught him. (Ended up with genius IQ, gifted in maths & physics)

But here’s the thing - my parents never sent me even to kindergarten for 4 year olds, like the other kids. We had very few toys and a very sheltered life. Sure, we were socially immature. But I was a fluent reader & speller by grade 2. By grade 7, I was correcting student essays for the teacher. And I don’t have to brag about the rest of school…

Which makes me think, hey, maybe our IQ is predetermined? That the “smart” kid will do well, no matter the program or school or environment or age of intervention? Maybe we should just give them more opportunities to discover what they like doing.

While I am all for stimulating young children in a loving environment this seems a bit frightening. (The children do look quite relaxed I have to admit. It’s the parents I worry about.)

A quote from one of them: “This is obviously helping her and we put her against other children and she’s doing a lot better than those other children her age.” Doesn’t much sound like “no pressure” to me. The toddler may well be enjoying playing with all these words and numbers for a time, but will the parents’ expectations bear the stress of having to keep up with the Jones’s child?

Edited for typos due to ,isplqced fingers.


“Maybe we should just give them more opportunities to discover what they like doing”. All that kids of today really need, is that we stop using stone-age fule in our cars and stop shoting missiles at eachother. And yeah, limited schedules for facebooking and well, something else than Justin Beaver as a role model.

Justin who? What have I missed?

Let them kids be kids…

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“I think these things can get out of hand”

That was my first thought.

It is probably a good program, but, arguably, it is, also, only a few steps away from tiger mum / wolf dad parenting. I’d rather see pictures of kids covered in dirt, outside of a classroom, and smiling.

I put some lessons up touching on these points a while back → Login - LingQ
Login - LingQ

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Absolutely nobody! :)~

Thanks for sharing the link! I liked the article - though it took me like 90 mins to get through it. It’s the sort of lesson I’d love to do when my Chinese is advanced. They raise a very important point at the beginning & further on how the attitude of the mother towards her husband/partner in turn affects the child’s attitude toward their father. They seem to say that the mother undermining her husband in front of the child undermines the man’s “symbolic status” in the eyes of the child? (See 那这些都会减损爸爸在小孩中那种象征性的地位). It certainly can undermine the father’s discipline, as they said.

In contrast to the “symbolic status”, I would have emphasised that the child’s sense of identity & self-esteem can be undermined when the father is criticised. Aside from that, I agree, as I’ve always believed mothers shouldn’t criticize their child’s father in front of them, even if they’re ex-partners, no matter how much animosity there may be.I didn’t understand the analogy of the cutting of the umbilical cord by the father at birth, with the attitude of the tiger mum etc, but my language skills aren’t’ up to scratch. I suspect there’s a cultural difference impeding my understanding, too.

They raised the interesting thought that the internet makes it possible for ‘absent fathers’ away being the ‘bread winner’, especially living apart in other countries, to maintain contact with their child re Skype, email etc. Such technology didn’t exist when I was a sole-parent back in the 90s. However, I cringe at the thought that anyone has to live apart from their children to earn an income - though I concede in some countries it may be necessary. But if it’s just to keep up with the Jones, or the false idea that more material possessions/bigger house etc are better for our kids, I’d prefer a lower standard of living anytime with both parents together with their kids.

Their discussion of absent fathers acting as either Santa Claus or a policeman, made me think about the problem of separated or divorced fathers acting like Father Christmas all year round during access visits. Mothers have to compete with fathers who generally have more income & ability than they do to indulge & whisk their kids off to a “fun weekend”. Often boring mum is the disciplinarian & person who has to pay the bills before extravagance. That was my hassle back in the 90s.

I’m glad the speakers said they don’t believe in beating kids!

Iaing, Keep sharing these lessons!

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