They say that common sense is learned through experience. It is reactive thinking that is based simply on what we have learned through life. Now here’s my question about that. Exactly how much life experience do you think we are talking about?
If experience is the basis of common sense, my kids need a lot more experience.
Last night my kids took their showers and came downstairs. They looked clean. They smelled clean. I assumed they were clean. Then the little one fessed up. There was no more soap in their bathtub so he just washed his hair. Then the older one fessed up. He did the same thing. Neither one of them thought to ask me for another bar of soap.
Perhaps common sense really does come with life experience, but that does not help me to understand why a child does not think to put on shoes before leaving the house, in winter.
Things like this happen all the time at my house. They use their shirts instead of their napkins. They turn on the TV when it’s time to leave the house. They have lost more jackets, gloves and hats than I can count. They forget what they are supposed to be doing regardless of how obvious it may be or my eleventy billion reminders.
Sometimes it is so hard to believe that they do well in school. The experts say that you can have the best education in the world and still lack common sense. That statement is starting to frighten me.
Last season I dropped my son and his friend off at soccer practice. His backpack was full with a sweatshirt, soccer ball, water bottle and emergency medicines. When his friend’s father dropped him off, he had nothing but an empty backpack. The kid carried home an empty backpack and thought nothing of it. Growling all the way, I headed back to the soccer field to round up his things which were scattered across a 20 foot radius.
Okay, so maybe smart people don’t always do smart things. Maybe I don’t always phrase things to them in a way that would garner a rational response. Perhaps they have so much going through those little brains that there is no room to focus on simple things, like flushing. We all have lapses in common sense. I’ll just go with that.
Yesterday my eight year old spent several hours with his friend Nolan. His only friend named Nolan. Today I mentioned Nolan while talking with my son and he replied, “Nolan who?”
Please tell me I am not alone here. Please, because I am exhausted.