A friend of mine, who has a child in the King’s class, just called to tell me that she was just kicked out of a music class with her other son. She wasn’t dragged by her hair or anything (although I wouldn’t put it pass these particular people who run this class) but she was told that the leaders of this music class have decided that her 2-year-old son is not 'Blank’ material. I shall withhold shaming them (for now).
The King and I used to go to this same music group when he was the same age. From the start I was not a fan, as you have to become a member (for a fee of course, for a sodding music class) and then pay on top of that for the class itself. Fine, I can live with that; they’re running a business. But from the get go, as they have been in operation for many years, they give you this diatribe as if joining this group, you are being inducted into the Rock ’n Roll Hall of fame and you should count yourself lucky. Um, you’re singing to my kid dressed up in costumes, this is not the West End people.
Now don’t get me wrong, the women leading the group had fine voices and they were quite creative in terms of costumes and what they’d sing. And some of the songs, and we’ll get back to the word some, the kids ‘were allowed’ to join in the dancing and take part. The King of course used to think this was pretty damn amusing, as most children would. The problem was (and IS, as my friend just got kicked out), that if it wasn’t a song they deemed participatory, your child had to sit on your lap like a stone and not move an inch as they performed for you. If your child did get up and move, they would lead him back to you by the hand with a stink eye that would fill you with mother shame. I hate mother shaming, in any form. They would then after class remind you that in their class, children must be kept under control. (Clearly none of these witches had boys).
Now keep in mind, most of these kids that take this class are under two. Can you tell an under 2 year old to sit still? Cause I sure as hell can’t. In fact, Benadryl couldn’t make the King sit still back then, even if I poured the whole bottle down his throat (don’t panic, I didn’t try this). Not only would the King hear the music and want to get up and dance, stroll, bend, skip...what have you, he would also want to play with their props and interactively participate (this was sometimes hysterical as they’d be mid song and he’d just walk up, pick something up and take off with it). I'd of course cheer him on from the sidelines, 'run boy, run!!!'
So in short, after being scolded and stared at one too many times by these ‘Take That’ singing, wig wearing militants, the King and I decided that we needed a more free form sing and dance class, where he (like his nutty mother) could shake his groove thing with reckless abandon and not be hemmed in by rules. (Don’t they know there are no rules in dancing?!)
So, according to my friend who was just asked to leave the class, apparently their stringent manifesto is still in place. Her son, similarly to the King, is another boy (ahem, toddler!!) who finds sitting still challenging at the best of times. And fine, in principle I get it, from an early age you want to tell your children that there will be times when they will have to sit still and obey the rules (zzzzzzzzzz, sorry, was I saying something?), but from where I stand, dancing and rules have no place at the same party!