I have always said that I was not going to be the kind of mom who would fight with my kids over the “little things,” like how they wanted to dress or wear their hair. This week, I had one of my first opportunities to follow through on that promise (aside from Tijge’s ongoing insistence on wearing rain boots almost every day last year). You see, my mom had given Tijge some wall decals for his bedroom, and he asked if we could put them up. Well, I am what you might call a Type A “artist,” which just means that I have a hint of creativity overwhelmed by a strong dose of reality. So of course, I had some ideas of my own for how we could arrange the decals.
But you can probably guess where this is going. Tijge also had his own ideas. So, with just a little bit of help and guidance, I let him make the creative decisions about decal placement. And you can probably also guess, looking at the picture below, that he did things a little differently than I might have, if I’d been the one with creative license.
And even though it wasn’t how I would have done it, Tijge sure had fun peeling off decals, and putting them on the wall. First, he would pick out a decal and use his fine motor skills to peel it off the backing. Then he practiced a bit of hand-eye coordination by having to keep the pieces from overlapping or folding up and sticking to themselves. He also had to do some problem solving when a decal didn’t fit where he wanted it, or when there was an air bubble that needed to be smoothed out. He exercised some creativity with the engine that he decided was going backwards down a hill, and with the “smoke” coming out of the smokestacks. He was very excited about the whole process, and about how proud I was as I pulled out the camera to get a picture of his masterpiece.
So I guess, if you think about it, this wasn’t really a little thing after all. It was a big thing, just not in the way I would have expected.