Your Kids Can Handle It, Even if You Can’t16

Posted by Deirdre // 09-28-2011


I have been completely remiss about posting this – I was sick and blah blah blah. So if you diligently read the NY Times Mag you have probably read this article. But if you’re like me and never get past the Styles section on Sunday and missed it, it’s definitely worth a read.

The piece was recommended to me by a friend, a writer and Brooklyn mom extraordinaire Nell Casey. It appeared in the education issue and its subject matter – how the author chose immersive education for his kids rather than the more typical American/International schooling, when moving to Russia of all places – is of particular interest to her since she and her family are moving to Rome next Summer (don’t worry, I’ll interview her for the blog and find out how we can all do the same).

The author’s youngest in school in Moscow, image via James Hill for The New York Times

But more than the education (which is duly impressive and while very different from the endlessly positive reinforcement our kids receive here, this school would likely have a waiting list a mile long in Brooklyn) the article shows how ultimately adaptable kids really are. Even when essentially dropped into a competitive school in which no English is spoken in a very foreign land, the kids thrive.

This is of course peace of mind for those of us who fear adverse effects on our kids if we uproot them from what they know, even if it’s less than a mile away (ok, that was me). It’s also of note that the article’s author, Clifford Levy is from Brooklyn and his kids were among the “coddled offspring” at PS 321. Read the article first but do not miss the video, which features the kids narrating the ups and downs of their experience. Fair warning – I watched much of it through tears, but I am a total sap and occasionally cry at commercials and while reading children’s books with my little ones.

Is anyone else considering a move abroad, or to a very different culture? On that note, check out this great piece in the Park Slope Reader on the subject of the culture of Brooklyn, or Park Slope more specifically.

{this is an update of the previous version of this post, with the correct PS Reader link!}