Sunday, September 21, 2008

Caught Unprepared

Mayhem comes home with a package from school. In it is a blank construction paper banner and some instructions. How cute! Preschool homework! The note says "Your child should draw or cut from magazines pictures of their favorite things. Please let them use the scissors themselves." "This should be a lot of fun" I say to Mayhem and set about finding scissors and glue. Then I look around and I realize something - there is nothing for Mayhem to cut out. We get 2 magazines in our house. The first is Cook's Illustrated, which is illustrated only with black & white photos of food and cooking implements. Mayhem is the anti-foodie, so CI won't work. The other is NRA Magazine. 


I look around hoping to find an old issue of Real Simple or Rachel Ray Magazine. I pick them up randomly at the store. But no, apparently I have been decluttering effectively lately. The only thing I find is a year old copy of a sci fi mag with Dr Who on the cover and the kid's not getting near that with his scissors.

We had a few days for this project so I looked around the magazine section when I went to the store the next day. Vogue. Mademoiselle, other magazines with articles about how to improve your sex life & look better in bed. Not really appropriate. Guns & Ammo. Hunting & Fishing. Got that covered already, thanks. 28 magazines aimed at teen girls, all featuring the Jonas Brothers on the cover. Also not really appropriate. 9 different football magazines. Not really useful as Mayhem doesn't care about sports yet. Numerous quilting, crocheting, knitting and scrapbooking magazines. Well, they interest *me* but I'm not seeing anything that would interest Mayhem. Racing magazines! Car magazines! Monster truck magazines! Hey, these might work! Oh...wait...there is a scantily clad woman draped over every single vehicle in every one of these magazines. Maybe when he is 14.

Where are the toy catalogs when you need them?!?! It's September. Shouldn't I be receiving Christmas toy catalogs by now?!?!  Oh wait, maybe I have and tossed them in the trash. Damn me and my decluttering anyway.

I ended up showing him the photos I have taken so far for my 365 Project,, letting him choose what he wants, printing them out in small size and letting him cut them out.

I'm not much into these sorts of crafts. I'm not that sort of craft person and I really suck with scissors. 

Seriously, I can't cut a straight line. Even a short one.

I haven't let Mayhem touch scissors since the curtain incident 8 months ago, except PlayDoh ones, so he really has no clue how to use them. He was two handed snipping at the paper, creating lots of fringe but not cutting out any thing. It was driving me nuts to see this. But the teacher stressed letting them do all of it and just guiding them, so I sat on my hands and watched. I eventually justified taking the scissors off of him and repositioning them in his hand. This helped him cut better, but of course he's cutting at weird angles, chopping of photo parts and getting upset about it. I'm upset about it too.  I wanted to shout STOP GOOFING OFF AND PAY ATTENTION!!! But I had to stifle that and tell him it was ok, it was a collage & he'd be gluing lots of things on top of others and then sit back and watch him DO IT AGAIN!

When it came time to color it I gave him crayons because I knew my nerves weren't up to seeing him MIX THE PAINT COLORS together.

I basically spend the entire time sitting there watching him thinking


I have no idea where this impulse comes from. I am not an interventionist parent in any other realm, but paint & scissors bring it out intently & it's always been a struggle for me to sit back and let them make all the paint brown.

This was Mayhem's first school project.He glued pictures on top of the coloring he did, "So they are a surprise."



mrsb said...

My oldest is 16 and I still have to sit on my hands for school projects, lol. I thought I was the only one with this affliction.

I'm pretty easy going with everything else. They can decorate their rooms how they want. I'm not overly picky on how clean they keep them. I love for them to do crafts and there is constantly a sprinkle of glitter on the floor from my 9 yr. old daughter...but something about school work makes me want to take over and make sure everything is "right".