Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Educational Vomit (Kim)

I vomited on my 11 year old. Not real gross, disgusting food vomit. Educational vomit. I didn't mean to do it. It was out before I even knew it. It happened last week. My daughter said she was going to make her own newspaper and then it happened, I vomited educational vomit all over her. I didn't even realize I had done it until later, and then I felt really bad. It's never fun to be vomited on.
Dr. Brooks talked about educational vomit at the first Face to Face seminar. Educational vomiting is when you give your child way too much information when they show an interest in something. You overload them and kill their desire for more. Let me give you an example. Your child comes to you and says, "Where is middle C on the piano?", and you vomit on them by saying, "Here it is, and here is A and B and D and E and F and G, and these are the pedals, and here are your new piano books, and I just signed you up for lessons twice a week, and I'm getting tickets to the piano concert on Friday and your first piano performance is in 3 months so, practice up." And then you wonder why they won't get within ten feet of the piano. Vomiting then leads to requiring. You become insistent on them learning and start requiring things from them, after all, they were the one that showed the interest in the first place, right?
Now we are all trying to be good parents and teachers and sometimes we think that means we need to have a 3 month unit study on each and every thing our child mentions a word about. But what if we try to inspire our child to learn instead of vomiting it on them? What if your child came to you and said, "Mom, where is middle C", and you said, "Here it is, " and they said "And where is G," and you said "Here it is." Then they watched you practice the piano and maybe take lessons, and go to a concert, and you give a performance. And then later, they came to you and said, "Can I take piano lessons?" At first you might even tell them that they are too young and they need to wait until they are older. Then they came to you again and begged and begged to take lessons. Which time to you think they would really and truly have a desire to work hard and put the time and effort in that it requires to learn how to play the piano?
It is so easy to vomit on them. I know. I just did it, and I killed any desire she had. Educational vomit isn't as gross and messy as regular vomit, but it is way harder to clean up.


S said...

Wonderful post! I hadn't heard this term before but I can definitely see that it happens. Thank you!

Sheila said...

Glad I am not the only one who does such things!

Dahlia said...

Very good analogy - educational vomit is harder to clean up. I'm looking forward to hearing about her newspaper if she'll still do it. Let her know she'll have subscribers in Topeka ;)