Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Sod NCT.... bring on the Lego lessons


Here's a question: how is it that the world seems full of people trying to flog stuff and life lessons to prospective and new parents.... but none of it is remotely useful? Where, for example, are the Lego lessons? It's okay for the architecturally-minded: your towers and houses and farms and cities just seem magically to slot themselves together. But what about the rest of us? For some reason those multi-coloured bricks have me stumped every time. 

Try as I may, I just can't work out how to get them to do anything more interesting than make a very tall tower. (Although I am a dab hand at a spot of colour co-ordination.) Which means I look enviously at everyone else's creations. Even a simple Lego tunnel over the train tracks (thanks Louis' Grandad) had me turning green. And as for Daddy J's Eschereque marvel, with twisting staircases leading up to Lego heaven, well, I refused to let Louis destroy it for days. I briefly had a good thing going with the odd skyscraper, but they weren't very stable. I've tried copying the pictures on the front of the Lego box but what sort of a lesson in creativity does that send Louis? 

The same goes for "crayoning". It's all very well for Louis to demand "Mummy come crayon" but what I want to know is: Crayon what? Even after a 20-year break, I'm still just as useless as drawing horses' legs as I ever was, a fact I still find unutterably frustrating. Louis might be happy scribbling away with a green pencil and calling it a "zebra" but I'm afraid that's a step too avant-garde for me. I found myself cheating and buying one of those how-to-draw-animals books from the Tate the other day, but my efforts are still pretty lousy. You'd never know I got an A at GCSE art. 

Singing would make another potentially useful ante-natal lesson if you ask me. For years, no, sorry, decades, the only singing you ever have to do is either the odd Christmas carol, or in extremis - or better still under the influence - some karaoke after hours. And then suddenly it's non-stop lullabies and nursery rhymes at all hours. And in all locations. We can be in a shop, out for a walk, on the tube: Louis isn't fussy. Neither is he choosy about the actual songs. "Mummy sing it the polar bear one," was his ultimate classic. Um, what polar bear one?? Now it's one of his all-time favourites. 

And what about a drama class or two to help with those bedtime stories? How much more fun would reading out loud be if you could actually pull off the odd regional accent? It might make the umpteenth reading of Tiger who came to tea a bit more interesting. 

Have I missed anything out? Perhaps I could be onto something here...... 

9 comments:

So Now What? said...

I am shite at all that stuff. Usually though if I do colour in with my 3yo he grabs every single colour off me because of course wanting what you don't have starts very young. Lego, don't fucking talk to me about lego. We have buckets of the stuff. Only now are the boys starting to make objects that kind of look like other stuff. I can tell you one thing though, nothing hurts quiet as much as standing on lego brick at 3am. Great blog :)b

Iota said...

Oh, just you wait till it's bowling a cricket ball at the stumps ("That ANOTHER wide, Mum"), dribbling a football, maths homework. Any homework, actually. It only gets worse.

I was always rather good at those wooden train tracks (Brio or equivalent). Could I join your Parent Skills operation as train track consultant?

Josie said...

I would like to be taught how to enter a deep zen-like trance so I can survive all the endless, mind numbingly boring repetitive games. Put this in here mummy! Now take it out. Now put it back! Now take it out... ARGHH!

I have to say though, I am quite good at the creative stuff... and have to show you this just to make you jealous:

http://twitpic.com/gex3u

John said...

@So Now What - at least Louis is still on the big Lego blocks - I know it's the little ones that really hurt. Plus they'll be much harder to build with!

@Iota - oh no! Cricket!! Does that mean I'll have to learn the rules?? YAWN

@Josie - you didn't make that horse did you?? Can you post a tutorial Vlog?!

PS: I've got a new one. Can someone please tell me how to make the endless noises he demands? "Make a ladybug noise Mummy, a crane noise, a giraffe noise, a digger noise....." And this morning: "a white noise". ???? I suppose I could have just stuck the hairdryer on....

ezwicker said...

have such fond memories of you singing personal penguin to t and l. please add singing to your can-do list. i heard something nice the other day: "our children don't need to see us doing things perfectly every time. they need to see us striving to do it." louis is lucky to have a mum so willing to strive for him.

Babies who brunch said...

BTW - those comments from John: they were really from me..... just to confuse you! And you're right EZ, striving is nothing to be sniffed at!

PS I gave in and made the Lego plane on the outside of the box this evening.... Louis loved it!!

A Modern Mother said...

You are on to something. The funny thing about the NCT classes is that they all focus on the lead up to the birth. Many first time mums are focused on this and don't think any further. I'm a craft whiz now, I never knew so many things existed ... including building Buzz Lightyear with lego!

Babies who brunch said...

@AMM: please can I have instructions for your Buzz Lightyear?! Although, am guessing that was with grown up lego rather than the big blocks we're still on.

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

You got an A in GCSE art? You are so the crayoning queen!

I'd like lessons in how to stop toddlers fighting and how to keep people happy whilst cooking, hanging out washing, stopping the dog from chewing the toys and trying to answer the phone please.