One of the major life skills that every child needs to learn is PATIENCE. They practise daily by queuing for lunch or the slide at the playground, yet having to wait for something for days it’s a difficult concept. There are two problems:
1- waiting it’s difficult for everyone
2- they are too young to grasp the concept of hours and days
Of course, all children wait for Christmas. It’s a major part of childhood and it’s great for them. Said this, the wait is so long that it doesn’t prepare them for what waiting really means in everyday life.
Two weeks ago we visited the National History museum in Oxford. The boys loved seeing all sorts of animals, but what they enjoyed the most was getting close to the T-rex skeleton. So tall, so big, so scary! Before we left we swung by the shop and the boys immediately spotted the dinosaurs section. Initially they were attracted by the usual toy dinosaurs, but after B noticed that we could buy a dinosaur egg, we couldn’t convince them to look at anything else. £13 later (£6.50 x 2), I exited the shop with two T-rex eggs.
The instructions said to put them in water and wait 3 days for hatching and a further 11 days to full growth. The first 3 days were long for the boys. They checked every few hours and then, on the second day, a cracked appeared. The level of excitement was sky high! On day three, a small dinosaur head popped out of the shell…
The wait was over and yet it also wasn’t. Our new family members needed to grow a little longer.
Like a pair of twins, they slowly grew in their watery nest… every morning the boys would check on their progress while having breakfast and then again at dinner time. Slowly, but surely, the little dinosaurs got bigger and bigger.
One day, I removed the shell entirely to let the water access the whole body. B was ecstatic! He actually jumped up and down with excitement. He could feel the wait was almost over.
Two weeks in and we now have two fully grown T-rex to play with and the twins have learnt a life lesson: good things come to those who wait, and these things might be dinosaurs… if you’re 4 years old.