Little Wang, who is three years old, is still attending a once-a-week, one-hour-only class at a place called Growing Up Gifted. For toddlers and young kids in general, this is the best place in Singapore I've come across so far, and I strongly recommend it.
Notwithstanding the above, GUG is not ideal for Little Wang. We continue to send Little Wang there because it's the best place we can find - but nothing in the curriculum is really the right fit for Little Wang. He is already the youngest kid in his class, but the subject matter is too easy to seriously challenge him. Today, when I picked Little Wang up after class, his teacher remarked that Little Wang has been answering questions for everyone in class, and all his answers are correct.
Typical of young gifted kids, Little Wang is no conformist. He has his own ideas of what he wants to do, and how. If he wants to answer all the questions, then he will. But if he doesn't want to do something, he simply won't. Today's art project was to colour a picture of a bear and then to print straight lines across the picture. This was to show that the bear was in a cage. All the other kids enthusiastically did this. However, Little Wang did nothing except smear a little brown on his bear. Despite the teacher's persuasion, most of Little Wang's bear remained uncoloured.
Later, after class, I asked Little Wang why he didn't colour his bear like all the other kids did. Little Wang replied matter-of-factly, "Bears don't like cages."
At GUG, the teachers are really good in that they really know what teaching young kids is all about. They never scold, they are always encouraging, and they strive to make all their lessons fun and enjoyable for the kids. In fact, there are no "lessons" - everything is more like a "play activity". Thus Little Wang could get away with refusing to colour his bear.
But I worry somewhat about the day when Little Wang has to enter the mainstream education system in Singapore. I can just imagine an older version of him saying, "None of the answers to this multiple-choice question are really correct." Or, "The PSLE textbook is wrong. Wikipedia gives the right answer." I just don't think that the Singapore education system will take too kindly to that.
Could you donate some peanuts to me? I really like your kind of peanuts."