A few days ago my almost-five-year-old, who has been taught at school to read single-syllable words, read the following, slowly, taking his time with each syllable, adding them together and coming up with excellent results:

His grandparents were delighted, I was proud.

And thus we have merrily sailed into the term-2 of school. Whew, Sigh, Wow and all that, and then some.
He has now mastered the upper and lower case English alphabet with minimal confusion (he now only confuses ‘b’ with ‘d’.)
In Mathematics, he has learnt to count till 100 (though at times he falls back to 30 after 69 and this goes on in an infinite loop till someone nudges him out of it). He also distinguishes which number among two is greater. He knows how to spell the numbers (in words) till ten, except ‘eight’, which is slightly confusing anyway.
Once the English confusion was out of the way, he began to attempt Hindi. He has been taught from ‘เค…’ to ‘เค…:’ but still forgets some of them. His teacher isn’t worried, she says “let’s give him some time.” Fine by me!

Thus speaketh a Mother who had posted this blog exactly an year ago, trying to hide her terror between the lines of the post. So much has changed since then. A year ago, I thought it impossible for a child to read three-letter English words, even at the end of Kindergarten. The least I wanted was for my son to properly identify the alphabet. I would not have believed it, had you told me that today he would read simple sentences like:
This is a car.
These are eggs.
The fat man in the van has a fan.

Oooooh I am loving it, watching him piece together the syllables and read the sentences, with the triumphant expression of pronouncing a verdict.

Still months away from completing KG, he amazes me when he says that the greater-than symbol (‘>’) is a crocodile who likes to eat the larger number. He doesn’t get the symbol wrong even once as he ponders over the numbers on either side and draws the sign between them, the crocodile’s mouth open towards the larger number. He also knows what ‘=’ means.

He spells and writes his name, and a few months ago he declared that ‘cycle’ was spelt as ‘SKL.’ Can’t blame him – I have no clue why ‘cycle’ in reality has such an unbecoming spelling. He looks at the word ‘clever’ and says it should be read as ‘clay-ware’. I have no objection whatsoever! He has his phonics right, something the people who made up these words apparently didn’t have.

He was not exposed to English before he started school, so it’s a delight to hear him speak the language to his non-Malayali friends, though the grammar is not too perfect. Even his toys sometimes speak English: the other day, I overheard his clay dinosaur tell his other clay friends, “Let’s go and eat somebody!”

Do I look starry-eyed? Can I be excused?