There is a game on my phone called Pou. Pou is a virtual pet that you can fed, wash and take for walks and so on.
Gio was wiping Pou’s face with an actual cloth. I told my wife.
“Next he will be giving him drinking water” she said. We laughed. “It won’t be so funny then.”
My wife had told me that when Gio fed Pou and Pou ate, he said “Good boy.”
10th October 2015
School trip to Mamba Village
16th October – Sports Day
Sports Day at school. One particular race started very well for Gio…
According to Gio’s caregiver/assistant teacher at school, Gio gives non-verbal instructions and behaves like royalty at school.
Gio picks the fruits he likes from the fruit salad. Then he lifts his hand, caregiver approaches, he points at fruit salad, caregiver takes away the remains of the salad and brings fresh batch.
Tuesday, 1st Sept
Back to school
Reluctant but got distracted by teacher
Reluctant to get into class but teacher drew his attention to book
Friday, 4th September
5th September 2015
Click on an image to view the gallery.
Sunday 13th Sept
To car yard
Gio was singing:
“Briing back, Briing back, Bring back to me, to me”
This is the first time for me to hear Gio singing by himself a song I can recognise.
Saturday, 19th September 2015
“More water,” he said
I said to his mum “I think you’ve made Gio think water is called ‘more water.'”
“Yes,” she replied,” and he thinks when someone says ‘No’ you say ‘Ok'”
“Do you want [something or other]” she asked Gio.
“No,” said he.
“No?” she said
“Ok,” he replied
Today I heard Telo calling the teacher “Teacher”
Saturday, 26th September
Gio was singing something in the car. I soon made it out to be
‘Everybody tidy up. Tidy up.’
01st July 2015
We went and bought a bike for Gio from an expat who was leaving the country.
My wife came home with a helmet to go with the bike.
The nanny changed Gio into his sleeping clothes and took him to sleep.
Afte a while, Gio started really crying. I wondered if the nanny had done something to him.
He went on for a while, so I went into their room and found him standing on his bed and crying. Maybe he was kneeling.
I consoled him and told him to sleep.
He settled down. I stayed a few minutes and left. No more crying.
Gio likes numbers written for him and things drawn for him.
Some of the art done for Gio now that he likes numbers and shapes:
Celebrating Mama’s birthday. (There were more guests than shown in the picture).
Gio’s pronunciation of numbers has changed:
‘Tor’ has become ‘four.’
‘Tat’ has become ‘five.’
‘Nenen’ has become ‘seven’ (or something close(r)).
This blog is a little over a year behind. It will take some time for me to catch up with current events.
In order to keep you updated and still slowly clear the backlog, I have decided to post current updates, and at the same time post the updates from past months. That way, not everything you read will be old, and I can post at any time without waiting for to first clear the backlog.
Monday, 1st May 2015
Stedmark (Stedmak?) Gardens
Gio was not overly keen on the slide, until his sister took him up the steps, through a tunnel and down the slide. Then he loved it!
He went back over and over again, sliding in a manner that his mother probably would not have approved of, but he was here with Daddy.
Tuesday, 5th May
Gio ran towards the teacher today when my wife dropped him at school.
My wife called me and said she had found the class being taught numbers.
So that is where Gio has been learning all this.
Gio was crying.
My wife said it was because he had wanted to go to our neighbour C’s house.
That is what the nanny had said.
He went on crying on and off as he was fed his supper.
My wife said she thinks he is imitating C.
Then my wife noticed that he was crying (more) when she touched his left arm.
She asked the nanny if Gio had fallen while they were outside.
She said No.
Had he been out of her sight?
Gio was now holding his left arm with his right hand.
My wife said we take him to hospital for an x-ray.
Indeed he had a fracture. Needs a cast.
The nanny eventually admitted that Gio had gone out of her sight for a while.
Undated: The headmistress, upon seeing Gio in a cast and his mother limping, said I should be cautious…
Gio didn’t seem too bothered by the cast. He was generally as active as usual. The main problem for us was his options for clothes reduced due to the bulk of the cast. In fact, we cut one of the sleeves of one of his clothes.
The other problem was keeping the cast dry.
We took Gio for cast replacement at the same hospital where his mother had had surgery.
Wed, 13th May
Gio counted 1 to 10.
Apparently the number that he pronounces something like ‘Nnat,’ and that we could not figure out, is five.
Bed-time, we started looking for his teddy bear.
We could not find it.
Maybe he threw it out of the car.
My wife said she had opened the window at some point and when they were leaving a hardware shop, he was complaining.
We went out at about 9:20 pm to look for it
Went to the hardware shop and asked the watchman. He looked but did not see the teddy bear.
He phoned his colleague, but nothing.
Scribbling on the floor
Monday, 18th May
Gio picked his letters of the alphabet
He would come to where we were siting and hold the letter to his chest and say what letter it was.
T, M, I, B, Q, 1
We were to repeat the name of the letter (or digit), then applaud, and not just applaud without first saying the name.
Saturday, 23rd May
Bought Gio new shoes. He refused to put on the old ones.
Sunday, 24th May
I went with Gio to the nearby market
“Water,” he said, referring to a puddle
“Ananana,” he said
I put the banana back where it had been
“Ananana,” he said, giving it to the lady who was selling.
“No, leave that,” I said
He took it again
He can go with that one, she said.
Monday, 25th May
When I was taking Gio to bed, he turned towards the door of our bedroom, which is opposite his room.
We let him sleep in his bed in our room
Tuesday, 26th May
Gio woke up early and whined until I got up and went with him to the living room.
It was 6:00 a.m.
Wednesday, 27th May
I was picking Gio from school. As we approached the car, he pointed at the circular fuel tank cover and said “Circle.”
I told my wife later.
She said he had said that yesterday as well. “Did you know what he was saying?”
I replied that I thought he said circle but I wasn’t sure.
You may want to read this post if you haven’t yet.
Tuesday, 21st April 2015
I took Gio to his first day in school. I can’t remember why my wife did not do it or did not go with us. I jokingly said that she was avoiding crying when we leave him at school.
First Gio and I went to take a picture that was needed by the school upon registration.
The first studio we went to said that their machine needs to warm up. So we went to another studio. They did not seem interested in attending to us. So we went back to the first studio and took picture like these:
(Click on a picture to view nicely. Click X at the top LEFT to exit gallery)
We met the headteacher. She chatted with Gio.
Went to class. There was no drama.
He seemed a bit hesitant at first, but he stayed without any drama.
I read the instructions that I had asked my wife to send by text. Must have been something about feeding. Gio started playing with the toys in the room.
When leaving, I called “Giovanni.”
He turned and stood
I said ‘Bye.’
He waved back.
The headteacher was relieved.
And that was that.
I sent text saying that Gio was probably hungry and should be given a snack
In the evening, the teacher said he was no trouble.
Caregiver or teacher said “You have a very good boy. A good boy
You should be happy (or you should be thankful).”
“He ate well. He was fed, though,” she said.
Wednesday, 22nd April
My wife took Gio to school this time.
The headteacher said the second day of school is usually the problematic one, because the child has known that ‘This is the place where my parents leave me the whole day.’ Gio did not seem to have such concerns.
He was heading straight to class.
When he reached he went right into the classroom and gave hugs to the teachers and caregiver.
My wife took the opportunity to flee.
Then she called me and asked me to ask the teacher (she did not have the teacher’s phone number) to have Gio put on his jacket and that he should be given water after his break-time snack and after lunch.
In the aternoon, my wife said she wouldn’t make it in time to go pick Gio. Could I take a cab and pick him then take a bus home with him?
Any problems today? None.
I went with Gio to an MPesa shop
“Hi Mum,” said one of the attendants
I smiled, then said He’s a boy
“Many people think he’s a girl.”
In the bus, I took a pack of Amigos from my bag.
Gio was visibly excited. He waited patiently for me to open the bag for him, and then he ate as we went.
We got home and after a while, I took Gio out to play. C (our neighbour) showed up and was delighted to see Telo.
“Telo!” she said and came and gave him a hug.
Moments later, her nanny came and told her to get into the house for a bath.
Up she got and into the house. Gio stood to follow but the door was shut.
I felt a bit sad for him.
There is some background information that I feel would be useful in understanding Gio joining school relatively early.
My wife and I had actually considered homeschooling. In fact, we went ahead to find out who is doing it and where they got training to prepare them for it and their experience. Those who are homeschooling seem quite happy with it.
As we were thinking these thoughts, Gio was of course staying at home and going about his usual routine. He would be taken outside by the nanny to play and after lunch, he would be put to bed. This is where one problem was. Many times he would get out of bed and come to the sitting room and would cry if he was taken back to his bed to sleep.
In addition, I noted that I personally could not keep up with the sustained play that Gio wanted.
Thirdly, as I mentioned towards the end of this post, Gio would get excited to see other children of roughly his age or a bit older and would want to play with them.
Considering these things, I felt that Gio needed a place where he could play with other children, get tired, and be able to sleep for at least an hour in the afternoons. The solution was to get him into a play school or play group of some sort.
Thus began our hunt for schools.
There is a school next door to where we live. This would have been an excellent place. The nanny could walk Gio there, have him play to his heart’s content, then they could walk back in the afternoon, and hopefully he would be tired enough to sleep. Unfortunately, that school does not have play school.
So we tried a little further on, same thing – no play school.
A third school had apparently closed the kindergarten and now had a secondary school only.
Further and further we drove.
Another school indeed welcomed children of Gio’s age, but my wife felt that the children of his age were too few. I think there was just one girl of about his age. Or maybe two. (Plus the school was rather costly).
Yet another school (this one uses the Accelerated Christian Education – ACE – system) had more children, but my wife said the teacher/s was/were ‘shrubbing’ (speaking with a tribal accent). Sigh.
Another school was really nice. And really expensive (for us at least), at about 100,000/= (currently about $1,000) per term! No, thanks.
Keep in mind that the original plan was to get Gio playmates at a place he could walk, play, walk back home and sleep.
We went to at least eight schools in total.
Finally, we went to one more school, just to find out about it. When we saw the fee structure, I wanted us to leave. My wife asked about bringing Telo only a few days a week, and the person we were talking to said they’d get the accountant to respond to that. The accountant turned out to be someone who knows us from Church! She told us that her own children were in this school, that she had tried ACE and finally brought the children here, etc. My wife was convinced.
To really summarise, my wife lobbied for us to take Gio to this last school, and we did.
That is how Gio started going to school. Well, he starts in the next post.