Posted in Langit Senja, Maternité, Thoughts

5th : (School) Life in the Time of Corona

According to Howard Gardner, there are 7 types of intelligences that human could be categorized to. Howard Gardner initially formulated a list of seven intelligences. The first two have been typically valued in schools; the next three are usually associated with the arts; and the final two are what Howard Gardner called ‘personal intelligences.

1. Linguistic intelligence

2. Logical-mathematical intelligence

3. Musical intelligence

4. Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence

5. Spatial intelligence

6. Interpersonal intelligence

7. Intrapersonal intelligence

In Frames of Mind Howard Gardner treated the personal intelligences ‘as a piece’. Because of their close association in most cultures, they are often linked together. However, he still argues that it makes sense to think of two forms of personal intelligence. Gardner claimed that the seven intelligences rarely operate independently. They are used at the same time and tend to complement each other as people develop skills or solve problems.

As a person, I have known even before I knew about this theory, my biggest strength goes to the 7th intelligence. The ability to know my self very well. I mostly know what I want, what I should do, the persistent and determination to achieve it, the ability to stand up no matter how many times I fall, and the resilience to finish what I have started no matter how long it will take.

As it is said above that one intelligence rarely stand alone, the other one that I could be quite comfortable to claim is number 1. While I might have some bit number 3 and 4, have a little of 2, and the very least of 5 and 6.

In some researches, intelligence of a child is inherited more of it from the mother than the father as written in this article.

Research has confirmed that a child’s intelligence is in fact determined by their mother’s genes.

That is because intelligence is carried on the X chromosome and while kids can inherit an X chromosome from their dad also, mums carry two X chromosomes so are more likely to pass theirs on.

Researchers at the University of Washington found that a secure emotional bond between a mother and child is crucial for the growth of some parts of the brain. After analysing the way a group of mothers related to their children for seven years, the researchers found children who were supported emotionally and had their intellectual needs fulfilled had a 10 per cent larger hippocampus at 13 on average than children whose mothers were emotionally distant. The hippocampus is an area of the brain associated with memory, learning and stress response.

A strong bond with the mother is thought to give a child a sense of security which allows them to explore the world, and the confidence to solve problems. In addition, devoted, attentive mothers tend to help children solve problems, further helping them to reach their potential.

As a mother, one thing that I know I have done right so far is having fixed schedule at home from the very beginning of my child life. It’s so important for my sanity and turns out it is also supported by experts about how important daily routine for children.

As a baby, Langit’s day starts from subuh at the latest at 6 am and always end at the very late at 8 pm. My two non-negotiable principles are :

1. Bed time is at 8 pm.

2. Eating what is served.

No questions and debate on those two.

As years go by, I keep enjoying the results of applying those two things. Wherever we go, she sleeps on time. Weekend or weekdays, home or holiday, the eyes closed at 8pm. She grows to be a non picky eater, wherever we go, she eats what is served on the table. After seven months here, no dependency to rice is one of the advantages of living here.

In spite of all the hardships, all the energy and resources spent, moving to London is one of the best things happened to us, as a family and individually. I wont elaborate about that, but only focus to things that related to the title.

Heading to the end of her first seven years leg, having fixed routines brings even more advantages. Combination of having fixed routines since early years and moving here turn out to be something that helps a lot during this unprecedented time.

It’s been few months since she started having compulsory fixed schedules as followed from morning till evening :

-Small breakfast
-Big Breakfast

– Bath time

School from 8.30-16.00

Evening :
– after school watching
-Reading books and phonics

She literally wakes up for Subuh together with us on the exact prayer time. It’s getting harder recently since in spring and summer, subuh is getting earlier while maghrib is getting longer.
But, as many thing before, we will figure it out and find some way. After subuh, it’s time for reading Quran. It’s when she recites and memorize Juz amma. Every two weeks, we add another surah without leaving the old ones that have been memorized before.

Done with those two, she will have a light breakfast with a cup of milk and bread/pancake/donut then proceed to her most favorite schedule : piano practice.

It’s been only four months, but unexpectedly, her progress is quite good. Talking from a piano teacher point of view, I am surprisingly satisfied with her, as she has an underlying condition (will elaborate this later as I have also written in few previous post back). I see how powerful it could be to practice and repetition done daily to the whole skill. It’s still a long way to go, but having the basic skill and attitude right, it’s something that should be celebrated.

Done with piano, she can choose either to take a bath or have her next breakfast first. This time is main course breakfast with rice. She doesn’t have rice for lunch. I usually pack her bread and jam or samdwich burger, yoghurt and fruit, and some other light snack.

After six hours in school, she could have her me time of watching youtube, games, or whatever she wants while waiting for dinner. Maghrib is the cut off of her me time. After maghrib, she is having Iqro and short Islamic lesson and reading books before 8pm sleep.

That’s what the normal days look like.

Those compulsory schedules are all on me.


This Friday is the third week of UK lockdown but the fourth one for us.

After four weeks at home, additional options during lockdown (choose or leave as we/she want) :
+ Zuhur, Asr and Isya (the silver lining)
+ Morning walk and exercise
+ Painting

+ An hour of bathtub playing
+ Scary Math with Daddy (no daddy no math)
+Nap time
+ Two sessions of watching youtube
+ Writing
+ Helping with dinner, laundry, and cleaning, baking or washing the dishes.

While the compulsory ones are all on me, these optional ones are divided with her dad. Since it’s optional, we can have it or leave it. No pressure.

The only thing that slowly move from optional to compulsory is the first item. The best thing of this staying at home period is the chance to have her doing all five prayers. What could be better than that?

This might sounds a bit uncomfortable, but I somehow feel grateful to be here during this hard time. Having the doctor working with proper shift schedule, although the risk is no joke, but at least, he has proper rest time.

Having the little girl schooled in a place which only focused in three big areas is a blessed. I saw a lot of parents throwing tantrum to their child school because of the unrealistic school works given during staying at home. This is a hard time for everyone. Not only for the adults, but also for the kids. There’s no need to make it harder of doing what’s not too urgent and important.

As her school only focus in three things : Reading, Math, and Writing, they make it easier too for us to be focused.

They have the same book to read for a whole week with different tasks given daily based on that.

They do the same math theme to repeat until they master it.

All down to the same thing : repetition.

Based on this post opening, she tends to learn faster in language than in math. She loves phonics, reading fast, and love to playing with words into song. That helps her to play piano easier too. She can play while singing and reading the notes at the same time. She can answer questions without a single mistake when playing in the language app. It’s the irony or the funny side since she has an underlying condition.

Meanwhile in math, judging from the high pitch of her father’s tone from many of math lessons, guess the researches above is true. But, not to take all the credit, both of her parents love books and reading too, so it’s more combination of nature and nurture to be fair.

What the schools here have differently is the resources to learn about that. They have bulks of website and apps to learn. It’s paid by the school and free to use. It’s currently Easter break for two weeks so basically there’s no lesson schedule from the school, but we still keep practising as usual.

More than before, it’s proven having daily schedules in whatever situation, turns to be a great help for the parents and the child. So they know what to do each day, even when school is cancelled.

More than before, it shows that the child first school is at home, and the parents is their first and main teacher.

It’s important to choose what really matters the most for us what kind of lesson we want to teach them. We can’t pick all the fight, make those SWOT analysis on you and the child, and choose our own battle and stick with it until a long time. Do it daily with no excuse. This lockdown period gives proper chance to build tiny habits at home that becomes the main ingredient for characters. Something that will go with our child for a long time.

We dont spent too much time doing the lessons. Just average amount and adequate time. Instead, she found new love for cooking with her dad, taking care laundry, and doing any other non-related school things.

We do morning walk to the forest, climbing the hill, riding the scooter, and stopping by to Sainsbury to buy some things.

These kind of lessons that we do during school in the time of corona.

School is greatly missed indeed and we’re really looking forward to going back there. But being at home for a long time is not a bad idea. After all, it’s the only place where we could return to.


Pas special, J'ai seulement besoin de beaucoup de privee

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