We have been attending the story telling session in the library every Wednesday. It is a precious time for Mal to mingle and socialise with other English speaking children. The 1 hour session at the library consists of 1 full hour of story telling which includes some nursery rhymes and stretching, followed by colouring session which the children can stay for unlimited time.
Here is Mal’s progress at the library for our first 3 visits.
Week 1 – Story Time
We were slightly late and the story telling had started. We grabbed a seat behind the group and he was quick to blurt out ‘NO, I don’t want to listen to stories!’ when we entered the room.
After warming up, he was fine sitting behind the group, listening attentively to stories while I moved to the back of the room.
Week 1 – Colouring Time
During colouring time, he was happy watching the rest do their stuffs.
Week 2 – Story Time
He again sat behind the group. He did not join in when the rest did their rhymes and stretching.
Week 2 – Colouring Time
He accepted the colouring sheet and joined the rest of the children. He was especially patient with his colouring and was one of the last few who was still colouring when most of the kids left. Here’s his multi coloured dog
Week 3 – Story Time
We reached there early. I urged him to join the children in front which he did. He queued up himself for his name tag and was able to tell people his name and how to spell it when asked. He joined in the nursery rhymes and stretching session. They were reading about cats and when the story teller said ‘Mice like cheese’,
Mal interrupted ‘My dad LOVES cheese too’.
I could hear him from the back of the room.
I was happy to hear my boy speak up in a group.
Week 3 – Colouring Time
He rejected the Cat colouring sheet and choose to read instead. As the colouring group got smaller, Mal moved over to join 3 girls (all older than Mal) and a 21 year old story teller in the colouring cum chit chat session. I was at the end of the room, observing my boy as he advanced slowly.
He started off sitting next to them, quietly watching them, speaking occasionally only when he was asked questions.
He interrupted when they talked about houses, backyards, gardens and swimming pool. He told them about our house in Phoenix, Singapore and then the one we are staying now in Paris. Which level we stayed, the swimming pools, the backyard.
He talked about his school in Singapore, our planned trip to Amsterdam, the things he is going to see in Amsterdam, the people and the language they speak. The conversation somehow diverted to planes when he was asked about his trip to Paris.
He continued to talk about his flight from Singapore to Paris in Boeing 777, about his lists of favourite fighter jets and passenger jets, about which jets can fly faster, which can fly supersonic, which countries the jets are from, about his Daddy’s job…
The 3 girls had stopped talking by then and the 21 year old was beginning to look baffled and lost and must have felt my little boy’s persistent interest in the aviation world. Their conversation could be heard throughout the room and heads were beginning to turn as readers smiled politely and looked at my boy in amusement. In an attempt to save my boy and the 21 year old from further embarrassment, I kindly told him ‘Maybe you can talk about something else. Not everyone likes airplanes’ which the 21 year old kindly said it was ok as she hardly hear Mal talked.
So the secret to make Mal talk, and not just talk, but talk NON STOP is
planes? pretty blond? or maybe just girls!
Whatever it is, it made me proud to hear my 4 year old speaks so well, rambling on almost non stop with facts and experiences and it made me even prouder to know that he was courageous enough to come out from his little shell and talk to someone he hardly knows.