The boy who knew too much: a child prodigy

This is the true story of scientific child prodigy, and former baby genius, Ainan Celeste Cawley, written by his father. It is the true story, too, of his gifted brothers and of all the Cawley family. I write also of child prodigy and genius in general: what it is, and how it is so often neglected in the modern world. As a society, we so often fail those we should most hope to see succeed: our gifted children and the gifted adults they become. Site Copyright: Valentine Cawley, 2006 +

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Fintan's very own season's greetings.

Fintan, 8, is a young boy of much whimsy. He has his own particular way of expressing himself that often leads to bizarre, or comic results.

Today, I phoned home to the UK to let my children speak to my parents. Just before the phone call went through, Fintan made a remark, which the others paid particular attention to.

I asked the boys to sing my parents, the song that begins: “We wish you a Merry Xmas...”

My father answered the phone.

The boys duly began singing.

“We wish you a HAIRY Xmas, we wish you a HAIRY xmas, we wish you a HAIRY xmas and a Happy New Year!”

“Could you hear them?”, I asked my father, wondering if he really had.

“Yes. They were wishing me a Merry Xmas.”

He seemed quite pleased at their singing.

“No.”, I said, “they were singing you: “I wish you a HAIRY Xmas...””

He laughed. “Oh were they?”

He turned to my mother, to explain what they had done.

Now he seemed even more impressed.

I have no doubt it was the first time, in my father’s life, that anyone had wished him a Hairy Xmas. That was what Fintan had remarked upon, before I put the call through. He is always coming out with off the wall remarks and reinterpretations of things he sees and hears. It is refreshing to hear his thoughts.

As for me, it is certainly a Hairy Xmas, since I have a beard at this time.

Anyway, in the spirit of Fintan, I would like to wish you all a Hairy Xmas, and a Happy New Year.

Posted by Valentine Cawley

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 10:25 PM 


Blogger Christine said...

Hairy Xmas and Hairy New Year, too!

12:00 AM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Hairy Christmas to you and your whole gifted brood!


12:52 AM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Thank you Christine. I hope you have a Hairy season ahead!

Best wishes.

12:54 AM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Thank you Jessica.

Interesting site you have, by the way. Have a hirsute Xmas yourself!

9:18 PM  
Blogger tearsunderstars said...

Happy New Year!

Hope it'll be a wonderful year ahead for you and your family.

Just thought of sharing an article I've read recently.

2:33 AM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Happy New Year, Tearsunderstars!

Thank you for your well wishes.

Yes, it is a very interesting article. However, I think that the USA would never be able to implement the type of system that Finland has - it would stick in their craws, too much.

I see an inevitable decline ahead for the USA anyway. They have done too much wrong, for too long, for that not to be. The only real question is how fast that decline is going to be. I hope it is gentle, not only for the sake of Americans, but for the sake of the world. It would be dislocating to have a suddenly useless America.

Have a great year ahead.

2:42 PM  
Blogger tearsunderstars said...

Hi Mr Cawley,

Unfortunately I do not know much about the American education system to comment other than the fact they love competition. As I read the article, I really wish Singapore has the same ideals as Finland, but is highly unlikely Singapore will ever do. Some of the enviable characteristics of the Finn's education system which I noticed are:

"Finnish schools assign less homework and engage children in more creative play."

"The main driver of (Finnish) education policy is not competition between teachers and between schools, but cooperation."

"Finland's experience shows that it is possible to achieve excellence by focusing not on competition, but on cooperation, and not on choice, but on equity."

Why bother following the East Asian model, when Finland has a better and a lot less painful solution?

And also, just like America, the economic inequality in Singapore in becoming worse and needs to be addressed.


5:51 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Thank you Tearsunderstars for your further thoughts.

Singapore will never address its economic inequalities because the system is designed to create such inequalities. Just look at the pay of government ministers for a start. They would be about ten or fifteen times lower if they were interested in equality.

I hope you have a fruitful year ahead.

6:15 PM  

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