Thursday, February 12, 2015

Just Because...

If you've ever tried to teach anything to anyone under the age of 5, you probably know that it is always an exercise in futility. No matter what you are trying to teach them, it can take a long time, and cause a lot of heartache on everyone's part, before they finally learn whatever it is you have been trying to teach them. If you have three or more children under the age of 5 that you are trying to teach simultaneously, take the above-mentioned heartache and multiply it by a billion. But at least at the end of it you will have a lot more gray hair to show off. I consider my gray hairs as thousands of tiny little battle scars, at least when I'm not weeping about them...

Hundreds of my battle scars have shown up from trying to teach my kids that "Because" is not a reason. If I could count that high, I would tell you exactly how many times my kids have answered whatever question I might have asked them with the response "Because..." Here are some examples:

Me: "Boy, why did you dump all of your Legos out on the stairs leading into the basement?"
Boy: "Because..."
Me: "'Because' is not a reason!"

Me: "Little One, why did you take all the toilet paper off the roll and leave it in a pile in the middle of the bathroom floor?"
Little One: "Because..."
Me: "'Because' is not a reason!"

Me: "Girl, why did you slam the bedroom door when you knew both your brother and your sister had their fingers in the way?!?!"
Girl: "Be---"
Me: "AHHHHHH!!!"

As you can see, trying to teach kids can be exasperating. Although, I thought I had made some progress in this particular lesson, since I had heard all three of the kids tell their siblings my "Because is not a reason" mantra in recent weeks, so I thought they were catching on. I don't think the exact meaning of it was totally sinking in, though, at least with the Boy. I think that because of the conversation we had in the van after Preschool yesterday.

The Boy and the Little One were in the backseat, and we were heading over to their Grandma's house where I was going to deposit them for the afternoon and make a quick getaway. The Boy asked the following question:

"Why are we going this way, Daddy?"
"Because we are going to Grandma's house and this is the way", I replied.
"But Daddy, 'Because' is not a reason!"
"But I didn't just say 'Because.' I said 'Because we are going to Grandma's house'."
"But Daddy, 'BECAUSE!' is not a reason!!"
"Yes, I know, but that's not what I said. OK, it is what I said, but it's not the only thing I said."

I went on to try to explain that "because" is a word, and when it's part of a sentence that goes on to explain why something has happened, it's perfectly fine to use it. He would hear nothing of it, and continued to argue with me the whole way to Grandma's house, which, thankfully, is just a few minutes from his Preschool. I quickly shooed both him and his sister out and screeched away. Arguing with my 4-year-old has given me more battle scars than anything. You'd think I would have learned by now not to argue with him, but apparently teaching me anything is an exercise in futility...

No comments:

Post a Comment