In 2023, we are launching the Smile Brightly and Learn as our key initiative. I will talk about people, things, and experiences that make me smile in many of my blog posts in 2023. I invite you to share what makes you and your child smile.
Pets make me smile. I have many experiences where I smile and learn with pets around. Sometimes, when pets are around, I smile but do not learn as much!
Thank You Dhrovfor this interesting picture. It reminds me of Usha akka’s (akka means elder sister in Tamil. In RASA, we call teachers as akka or anna) home with four cats and a dog.
Every Saturday, I go to Usha akka’s home. I started learning story telling from Usha akka online in 2020. Usha akka is a senior facilitator for RASA India. I would see the cats walking by while I did the lesson.
When I went for her lesson in 2022 in her house, I was excited. I love cats and dogs. I was looking forward to meeting some cats. As soon as I entered the home, I saw two black and white cats sitting on the table. Ms Usha told me that Nila and Freddy are her daughter’s cats. She showed me two orange cats perched on top of the cabinets. I tried petting Nila and Freddy. I then went to the kitchen and waited for Bheem and Simba to come. However, Usha akka told me that Bheem and Simbha do not warm up to anybody including Usha mam’s own daughter.
After a few visits, I was surprised that Usha akka also got a dog. I asked about the dog. She told me the dog’s name was Tara. While I used to pet dogs in Weston, I have not played with dogs for a while. So I did not pet Tara and went to play with Freddy. While the cats do not make noise, Tara barks a lot. When Usha akka puts Tara in a room, she bangs the door and does a squealing bark. As you may imagine, it may be difficult to practice drama with Tara around. On December 25th, I went for practicing my play. I noticed that she barks less when she is in the room with Usha akka. So I decided to pet her when she came out. Now, I can play with Freddy, Nila, and Tara. Of course, Bheem and Simbha continue to ignore me and never come down from the top of the cabinet.
My Journey with Pets
2009-2010 Learning with Kylie
I used to go to a homeschool teacher. She had a white dog called Kylie. I used to look forward to seeing Kylie when I went to the class. I used to pet her in class. The one thing I did not like was that she barked when my dad came and rang the bell. This was my first experience with learning with dogs around. After 2010, I did not play much with pets.
2016 – 2019 Playing with dogs in the neighborhood
I started playing with dogs in 2016. I used to enjoy my daily walks in Weston. Petting the dogs made the walk even more fun. Many owners would stop and let me pet the dogs. I got to know many dogs including Sasha, Oliver, Karma, and Mallory. Some of these dogs, I met on the walk, while Sasha and Oliver were my teacher’s dogs.
In India, my cousin has a big Rajapalayam dog. I used to play with him daily. But one day, he jumped on me. I got a bit apprehensive, and I started approaching him warily. Kattabomman did not like the way I approached him. Unfortunately, we have not been able to sort it out and I do not play with him anymore.
2016- 2022 Playing with cats and dogs
While I was in Weston, I would only play with dogs, but after I started visiting my brother, I started playing with cats. My brother has two cats. Their names are Nanook and Jaggery. Nanook and Jaggery are very different. Nanook just hides under the bed when she sees strangers. On the other hand, Jaggery who is an Arabian Mau is a frisky cat. She is very friendly, playful, and curious. She likes to play a lot, but does not like to be petted much. I learned about cats by playing with Nanook and Jaggery, but now I can play with Freddy and Nila when I go for class. You can see from the picture below why learning with Jaggery is not easy. As soon as I start working on my laptop, she perches herself on the laptop. I have tried doing Bharatanatyam lessons online. The moment she hears a sound from the computer, she jumps up and parks herself on the computer.
Sometimes, she leaves the laptop but sits on my notebook and stares at the fish. As you can imagine, I do not learn much Cost Accounting or Marketing.
Pets make me smile. What makes you and your child smile? Share with us in our facebook group here.
A video tutorial by Pinki Kumar on various languages development methods and techniques for the preschoolers.
Author Pinki Kumar
Pinki is a special educator, play therapist and a mother of a neurodivergent kid. She has a YouTube channel Play and learn to teach different methods and strategies. These videos are a great resource for the parents to help their child learn various skills.