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#1 of 14 Old 01-21-2010, 11:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm wondering about maturity rates here. Any thoughts appreciated..

My dd went to Waldorf for 6 months at a 3.5 and then we moved to a place where there was no Waldorf, so we transitioned to a small preschool. 3 hours per day 3 days per week.

REcently, we visited our old home town and caught up with some Waldorf friends who have children the same age as mine. They used to play together all of the time. I know this sounds terrible, but I was astounded at the the difference in ...well...maturity. My friend's ds is 3 months younger than my dd (they;re both 4) and he has an 18 month old sibling and another sib on the way. He was rather baby-ish. My dd observed him like a specimen when he would freak out and have little tantrums over things like sharing, etc. His language was babyish as well. His Mom kept saying that the "conflict" was due to them both being "choleric" personalities clashing wills. But honestly, my dd wasn't starting any of it and barely reacted to him other than complain to me about her little friend...It was weird, man.

Do you think it's a boy-girl maturity difference? Or the fact that my dd is an only child mostly at home with Mom? I know that Waldorf really emphasizes not forcing expectations on kids. And I know about the 7 year cycle theory...

My real question is: Is it a Waldorf thing???

Finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel...:
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#2 of 14 Old 01-22-2010, 12:04 AM
 
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I wouldn't say it's a waldorf "thing". Considering the fact that he has been displaced by now 2 younger siblings could account for his regression. That is very normal regardless of the fact that he goes to a waldorf school. My almost 5 year old tantrums when things go against her will....but so do her non-waldorf-school-attending friends!

Consciously mothering 3 girls and 2 boys
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#3 of 14 Old 01-22-2010, 12:18 AM
 
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I think kindermama probably has the right diagnosis.

Children are all different and they go through different stages. My grandson was a very easy-going baby and toddler and youngster, but the last few months he has been really tough to handle...and now he seems to be improving again.

His big sister was a very tough baby, a demanding toddler and generally a pretty challenging child. But at 10 she is mostly really kind and helpful, works hard at her music (she plays fiddle), loves reading and is pretty patient with her little brother. I'm amazed...

Teenage years ahead!

I've seen waldorf kids who were very mature, very immature, total brats, saints and everything in between. Parenting has a lot to do with it, heredity, diet, environment, medical care...

So waldorf might have something to do with these behaviors, but you'd need a lot more data to sort it out.
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#4 of 14 Old 01-22-2010, 12:46 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks! My friend is a Waldorf teacher, so it made me wonder.... Yeah, I've seen lots of temperments in all types of edu situations... Probably jumping the gun on this one...

Finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel...:
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#5 of 14 Old 01-22-2010, 09:46 AM
 
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I'd agree that it's really probably a child/family thing rather than a Waldorf thing.

I have a 6.5 year old class one Waldorf child, she's been in Waldorf since she was 3. She is intellectually and artistically gifted and has real problems relating to other children and would much prefer to be with adults or kids in the older grades and she is really not sure what to do around very young kids. Most of her friends are in the older grades in fact.
At the same time she has a close friend in her class whom she has known her whole life and he is right at age level as far as maturity goes. Another close friend of ours is in Kinde, she's 5 and speaks and acts like an adult (my daughter loves her lol!).
We also know kids at the same age who are incredibly immature and that's just how they are. So, I would guess it's down to personal circumstances.
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#6 of 14 Old 01-22-2010, 10:35 PM
 
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Ditto the personality thing and family situation, which others have mentioned. I've also noticed that girls mature far more quickly than boys. Dd has a friend, a little boy who is 2 months younger than she is, who is WAYYYY behind her developmentally and linguistically. Honestly, he is where she was at age 2 or younger, and they are actually the same age (4).

Allison:  a little bit Waldorf, a little bit Medievalish, and always"MOMMMMYYYY!" to sweet Cecily since 12.22.05
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#7 of 14 Old 01-23-2010, 12:39 PM
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i know this is ticky and perhaps i'm feeling sensitive for lack of sleep and stress. . .

but i think it is safe to say that boys and girls develop differently. i notice that my young son has more physical capacity and coordination than girls his age, but the girls have more capacity for communication and also quiet activities like reading and the like. This is, of course, in general.

This is partly why i don't believe in developmental "milestones" so much as observing the process and determining whether or not more help is required for certain children. My son is actually "ahead" on the majority of his milestones and understands language very well, but actually uses very little spoken language (he does use words and short sentences, which is ahead of "schedule"--but it's rare rather than his norm).

I prefer to say that they are developing in different ways, as i'm sure the little boy who is two years "behind" in communication is more developed in other areas where a little girl of the same age may not be.

just being ticky, and i'm not taking anything personally. I'm just feeling a bit of. . . .hhmm. i don't know. and it's not from you. i totally own that it's in me right now.

i think that i feel that little boys are often disparaged in our culture in general because they do not easily fit into the cultural models for children, which is so based in discipline/punish, schooling models (being quiet, sitting, etc), and so their own developmental needs and methods are completely overlooked or seen as problems.

my aunt works with a lot of parents of little boys who have been labeled "problem children" even though they are just being "normal for boys." they tend to need a more "3-D" world experience than little girls until about age 9 or 10 (my aunt observes), and then little girls tend to go more "3-D" as they head toward 9 or 10.

Anyway, yeah, that's just me. I wanted to say it because i have a little boy who is very active, and sometimes people comment on it in a disparaging way, even though he is great great great at indoor voice, communicating non-verbally, and is great and polite in public. he is also very gentle with other beings (humans, animals, plants), even though he is so active.

anyway, yeah. just a two cents.
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#8 of 14 Old 01-23-2010, 04:00 PM
 
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Oh, Zoebird, I do hope you didn't take offense at my post. If you did, I'm very sorry. I wasn't trying to imply that all boys were behind or deficient in some way, or anything like that. I absolutely agree that it seems like people expect an awful lot of little children, and some (which tend to be boys for whatever biological reason) have more difficulty meeting those expectations as early as society wants them to. It's really very sad. I've seen the other side of that coin with dd's personality--she wants so badly to do things she really isn't physically or emotionally capable of doing and she has to handle a lot of frustration with that. We're currently going through a rough patch right now because of this very thing . . . and at times Waldorf makes it a lot harder for me because then I feel guilty that dd is wanting to write and read and wonder if I'm handling it properly and how to redirect or if I should redirect, etc. *sigh* Parenting is soooo hard!


Allison:  a little bit Waldorf, a little bit Medievalish, and always"MOMMMMYYYY!" to sweet Cecily since 12.22.05
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#9 of 14 Old 01-24-2010, 07:10 AM
 
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I'm enjoying this insightful thread. I think it is just a difference in boys and girls. Our Waldorf Parent/child class has 4 boys and one girl. The girl is much more "mature" (as deemed by society!) than even the boys a year older than her. She is very interested in learning about societal mores, communication patterns, and "manners". The boys are......not! They are busy with other skills.
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#10 of 14 Old 01-24-2010, 12:11 PM
 
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As an old feminist, I hate to admit it, but boys and girls really do seem to be different from each other, at least developmentally.

But human beings are more like each other than not, even with the differences! As compared to other species, for example.
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#11 of 14 Old 01-28-2010, 01:10 PM
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of course, i think that boys and girls are equals and equally valid. it just seems to me that--in general--they develop in different ways. this would make sense considering both biological factors (hormones, etc) and social factors (how we treat boys vs girls).

ok, i have to get everything here organized to go. will be back though!
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#12 of 14 Old 01-28-2010, 09:24 PM
 
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I would think that's an isolated situation and not due to school or even gender, necessarily. My son fulfilled none of the 'typical' boy stereotypes when it came to the early years, neither did most of his other friends who were boys.
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#13 of 14 Old 01-29-2010, 01:50 AM
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of course, there are always special cases in every direction. this situation could be a special case, your kiddos could be special cases, my kiddo might be.

i mean, the kid has CRAZY going-out manners. people always comment on how he dines well at restaurants (inside voice, good communication, eats well with knife, fork, and spoon, etc), is great on planes, buses, trains, etc, and on and on. but he's also full of energy and other "typical" boy things.

i mean, ultimately, every kid is different. i think it's tough to assume that what we are seeing is normal or within normal or a developmental delay or whatever. i really think that parents plus professional can parce that out without me getting involved. LOL

one of my friends has a brilliant--and i do mean brilliant--child. he also has major emotional disabilities (he's adopted, has RAD). he's an amazing human being, but has special needs. when i relate to him, i just see him as him--not as a kid with RAD. i just figured that was that kid.

of course, i wasn't around him all the time, and his mother picked up on certain patterns and her intuition told her that it was a problem. they got a good diagnosis and the help that they (as a family) needed, and things just keep getting better for the whole family.

so, you know, it could all be isolated stuff, but i think it can also be helpful to recognize that there are generalizations that can apply just as those generalizations can be complete and utter nonsense.
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#14 of 14 Old 01-31-2010, 09:41 PM
 
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My DS and his friend (really my best friend's son) are like this. He seems way younger than DS, but they are the exact same age (10 days apart). Everything from height to language to potty learning to manners to eating to even their hair (DS's being longer--if uncut--and thicker, less babyish).

They are both boys, neither ever been in any school or care. We even parent in very similar ways--DH and I being the most Waldorf and "protective of childhood", but not by much.

I think most of the difference is nature (what they were born as) and the rest is explained by him having a 14 month old sister (they're 2.75 BTW).
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