Sometimes when we are out and about, my son will see something he likes- not a toy or a game. It’s a rock or a piece of bark. He picks it up and takes it home. It’s a habit he started as a toddler. My first instinct was to stop him, my mother’s voice in my head,”don’t touch – it’s dirty!”.
What I remember feeling at her admonition was shame for not knowing better and simultaneously regret that I had to leave my treasure behind. I never wanted my son to feel that way so I didn’t say those words unless it was truly unsanitary. I’m glad now for giving in to his impulses because ultimately the objects he brings home enrich his learning environment.
The other day, he picked up the little part of the zipper used to pull the zipper up and down. It was metal and he seemed to appreciate the heftiness of it. I didn’t and don’t ever tell him the true purpose of his treasures unless he asks.
He used it in one of his soldier games, flung it from his slingshot, and traced it on paper. Finally, he asked what it was. I explained and he asked,” what is the real name for it?”. So we looked it up. The piece is called a slider. I had a plastic intact zipper in my sewing kit so we saw the mechanics of it while reading about it online. Who knows how he will use this new knowledge in his life? Though I’m fairly certain it enriched his mind.
Article By Nuria Almeida
Picture By guy schmidt