I find that a lot of people think my job is all fun and games and I never actually work. Last night I was at work till 11ish and I will tell you my body sure did feel like it was working hard all day.
While I do enjoy downtime during naps, we swim, go to the library, play at the park...and numerous other activities my children learn. I will brag about my amazing 3 year old for a second and compare her to another 3 year old that is 6 months older than her. My child spends her time with a nanny- me and the other child is watched by her grandmother. I am sure the little girl still has tons of fun and gets lots of love and hugs but so does my child.
Example- Lets say A is my child and B is the playdate girl. A is 3 and B is 3.5 approximately. We decided to play the lady bug game. (a great game for little ones and I don't hate it after playing it 4 times a day 5 days in a row. So A knows that green means go and red means backwards. Red does confuse her a little bit because at stop lights she knows green means go, red means stop, and yellow means slow down...in the game red means go backwards. They have little yellow squares to help the child count how many squares to go forward or backward. A knows her numbers up to 9 by sight so when she sees 4 she doesn't have to count the squares. She shows me 4 fingers and says go, 4 spaces, move ahead. Cuteness. B looked at me like I had 3 heads. I had her count the squares. B can count but the concept of counting squares was lost on her. She also could not tell me which way was forward or backward and even had trouble when I said move that way and pointed.
While A and I do a lot of "play" during the day there is not a moment I am not thinking how can I teach her something during this. Learning should be fun.
A can write her name, knows the alphabet song and can identify at least 10 letters, can count to 20, can count to 10 on her fingers, does simple math, can follow rules in a game with help, she knows how to move the mouse and click on a button on the computer, she dresses herself, can go potty herself, has been known to get her own food from the counter/fridge when mommy is in the other room. She is also a no fear swimmer. I practiced swimming with her yesterday and took off her life jacket. She is finally tall enough to touch the bottom and ready for swim lessons. She was jumping off the second step swimming under the water after 5 minutes of practicing. I had my arms out every time to catch her but she knew to come up she had to put her feet down. I am so proud of my little one!
Her mom and I joke that when she starts a pre-school program in the fall she will just be going for the social aspect of it.