It is also not the first time that Competition has signed up for my 3-days Bright Minds Lapbookers workshops, under the pretext that she would like to expose her child to my programme, and swiftly launched her 'own' programme that appeared nothing short of a copycat of our tried-and-tested method.
Some will say 'imitation is the most sincere form of flattery'. Hah!
Perhaps it is. After all, how much can Competition learn if she has not been 'educated' by our method of coaching?
A mum can add some crafts and field trips to a storybook that she reads with her child to enhance the learning experience, but to say she is teaching her child with the multi-disciplinary thematic method just amplifies her lack of understanding of the method.
Which brings to mind another related question: if a parent can't produce sustainable learning outcomes in her own child, is she a reliable source to depend on for home-learning advice and information?
Why would I pay someone who can't bake successfully to 'teach' me how to bake, even if it is for only 3 hours? Just listening to her share 'time-tested' recipes and philosophies on baking that she has simply downloaded from the Internet will make me a good baker?
Anyone can just google and download free resources, but that alone doesn't make her an effective teacher. In fact, there is way too much free resources online and they are FREE for a reason - anyone with a computer and some time can create them for sharing. But it doesn't mean they are all effective in aiding the child towards learning goals. It's true that not everyone evaluates quality and effectiveness of a resource in the same way. To some, as long as they cost nothing, it is good enough.
Many tend to overlook the fact that there is always an opportunity cost to using ineffective resources - the child's time and effort spent on them, and the opportunity lost to pick up some real skills.
To the parents who have never attended my classes and workshops before and those who have a misguided view of literature-based lapbooking and the trans-disciplinary thematic learning method that we employ in our Bright Minds Lapbookers classes, they probably wouldn't have known the difference.
As the saying goes... the proof of the pudding is in the eating.
But this I know - the hundreds of kids and parents who have experienced our Bright Minds Lapbookers (for 2 to 7 years) and Bright Tots Campus (for 15 months - 2 years) programmes and Coaching Bright Minds Workshop (for parents only) before in the last three years will know the difference.
Many return to our classes, term after term, and also enrolled their younger kids when they are of age. Many are generous with encouraging feedback after their personal experience and through their recommendations, parents from all walks of life come to us. The result - our constant 6-month wait list for many classes. This is certainly the best testament of the strength of our programmes.
And it is for them - my loyal students and their amazingly supportive parents - that I shall continue to innovate and improve and bring on an even stronger programme.
Thank you everyone who have emailed and SMS me in the last few months when I took a break for Olivia .
I am back.
(All five of our three-days workshops are fully booked. The first workshop just ended in April. Our Term 3/2012 weekly classes commence in July.)