Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Different View

Youngest began kindergarten this year. Now for a child who has spent all but the first 4 months and a few summers in daycare you would think that kindergarten is simply an extension of school. Well you (and I) would be wrong. It began as a place that put fear into her young heart and had her shaking with enthusiasm. To enter the "big kid" school where there is reading and math, tests and homework was her marker that she had in fact made it, to what I am not sure, but she seemed very excited to have done it.

With this excitement in mind we diligently scour her Friday folder each week. She insists on overseeing the entire operation sharing each paper with us, explaining the nuances of the assignment that we are too old and dull to see for ourselves. So it happened that Hubby stumbled upon the first worksheet and was unable to shield the surprise and shock from Youngest. His apparent displeasure, as evidenced to our young 5 year-old by his questioning of the work, sent her into tears of displeasure. He soothed the child and let the matter drop. 

It was a while later before I had a chance to sort through the mountains of paper that come home from school look at her work. I should probably mention that while I am an involved parent, I am not obsessively so. In sorting through papers alone, I am a skimmer. But this paper caught my attention. At first glance something appeared "off." My brain seemed to say, "hey! hold on, look a bit closer." The paper was an innocuous sort of beginning sounds with animals pictures and the word minus the first letter. The student was to write in the first letter and then there was a space beside each word to copy the entire word. Normal kindergarten fare. Except that my daughter had copied each word in its mirror image. 

Yep, we are talking The Shining, REDRUM style backwards. (with each letter being backwards as well) It was truly amazing. When my brain processed what it was I was seeing I actually ran to the mirror to hold the paper up, and sure enough in kindergarten scrawl there were the words clear as day. When asked about the paper, Youngest glumly replied, "I know, I did it wrong." And yes, technically she was right. But, how amazing it seems to me; that mirror-style backwards is even a option to her brain. Of course I won't be taking her to any secluded winter retreats.


  1. That can be an early sign of being incredibly gifted. Then again it could be a precursor to homicidal rampages.

  2. i remember when phil did this and i freaked out. i just KNEW he was dyslexic (his dad is) and worried and stressed over it for most of his kindergarten year. (yeah, i know, i'm not his mom, but that's just the kind of big sis i was) turns out those "idiot teachers" were right. he wasn't dyslexic. i guess it's just a stage some kids go through. james keeps writing his "J" like "L" too. at least i know better than to freak out now-a-days :)

  3. I think you have a brilliant child on your hands!

  4. My youngest has done that for the last few years. Not so much this year. I also worried about dyslexia, which doesn't appear to be an issue.

    I'm with the others: Take it as a sign of brilliance! (he ended up skipping a grade)


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