Thursday, February 21, 2008

More Frank

(He's on a roll lately).

Frank has a funny way of getting distracted from bad moods by the strangest and most interesting things. I think this might be what Montessori refers to as "normalizing", but I'm not quite sure as I haven't read a lot about that.

Here are a few examples...

All of my kids are interested in computers and I generally try to restrain them from sapping all their time up with it. One morning when I had to be particularly firm, Frank was having an absolutely fit over it. For some reason, I thought he might like helping me with the dishes (standing on a chair at the sink and really digging in). He was enchanted almost instantly.

A few days ago, Frank got sent to the corner for hurting Kate. He asked for me to set a timer and then asked how long I had set it for. I braced myself for wailing (the general response), but calmly responded "four minutes". He casually remarked, "Oh. That's two and two minutes," and waited quite patiently for the timer to go off. It was as if, now that his mind was occupied with an idea, everything else was okay.

A recent car-ride elicited a similar result, with another one of his favorite things to think about - colors. I can't remember what he was fussing about on the way home, but he was very unhappy and there wasn't anything (reasonable) I could do about it. After about five minutes of this, like a lightswitch, he stopped crying and started talking about color combinations (they don't make any sense to us - but perhaps there is an order in his head). I think the combination went something like this: "Do you know what makes white? No-color and pink." I think he's been watching Ria at her artwork lately. In any case, he was fast asleep in a blissful nap within about two more minutes.

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