That is definitely the question. Henry’s only four, so I know I shouldn’t be that worried about curriculum right now. But I think about it every day. Should we be doing some kind of formal “learning time?” Am I hurting him by not doing it? Would I hurt him if I did it? I know he’s doing fine with just playing all day, because he seems to know just as much as any other kid his age, if not more. Of course, I know those kinds of comparisons are pretty useless anyway, but it’s hard not to think that way when your child is not in school and nearly every other child is. I imagine this will always be a dilemma for me.
One thing that’s really worrying me is that I want to make sure Henry fulfills his potential when it comes to math. It seems like he’s a bit advanced in that area. I don’t work on it with him, obviously (we don’t “work” on anything), and he is already starting to figure out multiplication in his own way (counting sets of window panes and imagining more in his head, adding sets of numbers, etc) and can count by threes in his head. He seems to love numbers, always asking us addition problems and preferring that we get the answers wrong so he can help us figure it out. So here’s the dilemma: how do I encourage him to develop that skill without killing his love for it? My other dilemma is that he strongly resists anything that I want him to do. If he gets the sense that I am requiring something of him, he shuts down. Ah. Wish me luck.