All parents know that the older the children are the more creative they are with their questions. If you happened to check my INSTAGRAM here, you could imagine the situation.
But for those who did not, I will try to explain it here. Weihnachtsmrkt or Christmas market is very popular during Christmas time around November-December in Germany, and some parts of Austria too if I am not mistaken. Speaking of Weihnachtsmarkt, Dortmund has made a briliant breakthrough by setting up the biggest Advent Calender in the world. It is built up by many containers that resemble doors, so every day starting on the December 1st to December 24th, a door will be opened and each of every door contains gifts for poor people around the world.
Today, I got to see it with my daughter, and every door contains gifts for poor kids around the world. Today’s gift is for children in Africa!
So, during the opening-door event, there was a drone buzzing around the sky. It did make a noise, but not so hard that everyone kept looking up above the sky to where the DRONE was flying. My 4 year-old daughter seemed to be distracted by this DRONE; it was new for her to see something like that flying on the sky. There comes the questions that made me think of some ways to answer all her questions logically (according to her phase of logical thinking):
My daughter (MD) : Bunda (mommy in Bahasa Indonesia), is that UFO?
Bunda (B) : No, my dear.
MD : What is it then?
B : It’s called DRONE.
MD : What is that, Bunda?
B : (hmm thinking!) It’s a kind of tool like a camera to take pictures of us all down here.
MD : What do you mean Bunda?
B : Hmm, you know camera right? just like on my cellphone when we take pictures together. So this DRONE is also a camera but flying on the sky, so that it can capture us all in the camera.
MD : Yeah, but why is it flying?
B : Hmm, ( having a quick inner monologue whether or not I should mention a remote control! that would lead to another explanation of the question that has nothing to do with DRONE) because it is automatic, people control that little thing flying. ( I started to question my own capabilty of explaining something rather complicated to digest for a 4 year old daughter. Not because my daughter isnt smart, in fact I think she is genious ( as every mother think of her children, right?), but because I have no children’s vocabulary related to this thing:)).
MD : Hmm, is there a man inside it?
B : No, there isn’t anybody there.
MD : Why not, but it can fly!
B : Because it’s not an aeroplane with a pilot and passenger. (hmm actually in the vocabulary or logical thinking of an adult, this DRONE has a pilot,who controls it, right? but again, explaining it in the language of an adult to a 4 year old daughter is not a good idea!) do you understand what I was saying?
MD : Hmm, yaaaa… (it sounded like she was still digesting my language!once again my language. It is I who neeeded to learn to simplify my language.)
Okay, she seemed to forget this DRONE thing for awhile , while she was twice on the caroussel in Weihnachtsmarkt. And I seemed to forget this thing as well, until the time to go back home, she asked me again :
MD : Bunda, where is this DRONE?
B : Well, the opening calender was done, so no DRONE anymore.
MD : Yeah where is it?
( you are such a smart girl. I realized I wasn’t answering your question, was I?.)
B : Hmm, someone who has it, has put it down and brought it home with him.
MD : Hmm, what is DRONE Bunda?
Aaaah!! that was the time for some visual explanation! So, we stopped walking and I took out my cellphone.
B : Do you know this camera? ( I showed her the camera on my cellpone). So, when we take pictures like this ( I took a snapshot of us-selfie??), the camera takes our pictures, so we are on the camera. This DRONE thing does the same work, but since there are many people, so many that a small camera like this one on my cellphone will not be able to snapshot all of us. This DRONE is a camera, but it is flying so it can see us all, you know like the eyes a bird looking down. Do I make myself clear?
MD : Yes Bunda.
My daughter is very chatty, some people might find it irritating though, but I think it’s a sign of an intelligence hehe, especially if she or he is still in a developing phase. So, she told her evening to her papa. And I decided to mention this DRONE! why don’t you tell Papa about it!
Now! it was the time where it came into test the new knowledge she got today!
‘Papa, I saw a DRONE at Weihnachtsmarkt today. Do you know what that is? it’s a small camera flying on the sky, and it can take picture of us down here. it’s so cool!’
Phew!!! I guess I needed to congratulate myself, because I think I did it very well. There is no doubt that my daughter did a great job understanding me, but more importantly was that I (as her mother, and an adult) am able to explain difficult questions she has had in the language she can understand. I hope I can be a better mommy each day!