Her peers are in classes, after school classes, tuition classes, drawing classes, karate classes, skating classes, dance classes, yoga classes, and many more.
I am thinking of starting classes for children, for Sanah and her peers, classes for empty time in the park.
I will teach children to run without the sole purpose of learning a new skill. I will let them trip and try and let them learn to break their fall on their own, to cry or not to cry when they fall, to cope with ego bruising of others laughing when you fall, and so on and so forth.
I will try and keep quiet when other kids laugh and wait for them to learn on their own that its nicer to go help someone who has tripped than to laugh. But if the fall was funny, it is okay to laugh and to take care of the one who has fallen. The possibilities are endless. In my class I will let all the possibilities play out.
I will charge for this class. A stone, a mud ball, a fallen flower, a yellowing leaf...anything. This might assure the parents that I am providing a service and am getting compensated for it. That might make them feel that time is being utilised well.
The classes will be for girls and boys.
I find boys totally missing from the grass garden. The slightly older ones play cricket. It is amazing that the girls are not even remotely curious about a vigorous game played right in front of them. They just dont see each other, the boys and the girls. I look on at the boys using every part of their body to play their game, they jump, they run, they swing, they lunge back, forward, everywhere. The girls, at best, they run, i can bring in the skipping ropes and the cycles, but as a group I wish I'd see them use their bodies differently. They are already careful, pretty, delicate- yes they are grubby at the end of their play but just not in the same way as the boys.
In my class I will hope that the the boys bully the girls into being more physical. And I would hope that the girls teach the boys to catch their breath and maybe even sit pretty for a while. And hopefully in a few weeks there will be no distinction about who is teaching whom.
So now I will need to take time off from my hectic schedule to make sure that my child and others her age do what children do - muck around, push, shove, take care of each other without adult supervision.
And what will i do? Supervise the space to ensure that it is adult free, reassure the adults that the children are indeed learning skills, valuable skills, called life skills. As an added incentive I might add that it is scientifically proven that free play in the setting sun ensures strong bones, great hand-eye coordination, a razor sharp brain and social skills.