PARENTING TEST

I like to know how I’m doing. I like grades, evaluations, benchmarks and milestones. If there’s one difficult thing about parenting (and there are many), it’s that you never know how you are doing. Of the 3 million decisions you make in a day, which were right, and which were the ones that will scar your kids forever.

Fortunately for me, there’s an exam for that. I found this in the tomb of an ancient pharaoh’s mother…and copied all her answers, because obviously she did a bang up job if her son became pharaoh and loved her enough to build her a shrine when she died.

Parenting Exam

WORD PROBLEM:

Create an hourly schedule based on the following guidelines for a two month old baby:

Your baby should eat approximately every three hours, but can start to go longer at night. At this age, babies get three naps per day, ideally at 9, 12, and 3. Naps should be between 45 minutes and 2 hours. The baby should get up when your family gets up, ideally around 7 am. To keep your baby from bad sleeping habits, they should not nurse to sleep. The best way to prevent this is to keep the baby on an eat-play-sleep-repeat schedule. Babies should go to bed no longer than 1 hour after their last nap. Most babies do not sleep a full 12 hours at night by this point. Babies can sleep a full 12 hours at this point.

MULTIPLE CHOICE

Approximately how many decibels are added to ordinary household sounds while your baby is sleeping?

  1. 5-7 decibles
  2. 10-12 decibles
  3. 20-25 decibles
  4. all the decibels

Which of the following is the result of Ferberization?

  1. baby self-soothes and goes on to win the Nobel prize
  2. baby screams for hours and permanently ruptures the parent-child bond
  3. baby self-soothes and permanently ruptures the parent-child bond
  4. baby screams for hours and goes on to win the Nobel prize
  5. all of the above, simultaneously, in your head

What are the likely side effects for children growing up with a working mother?

  1. attachment disorder
  2. resentment
  3. insecurity
  4. a guilt-ridden mother imagining all of the above in her perfectly well-adjusted child

What is the greatest gift you can give your child?

  1. breast milk
  2. the ability to self-soothe
  3. consistent discipline
  4. a pony

READING COMPREHENSION

My baby has been very fussy when I try to put him down for nap.

In this sentence, the word “fussy” means:

  1. overtired
  2. undertired
  3. hungry
  4. overfed
  5. intentionally bitch-slapping your emotions

My baby has been very clingy lately.

In this sentence the word “clingy” means:

  1. overprotected by parents
  2. not getting enough attention from parents
  3. sick
  4. perfectly normal for her age
  5. socially crippled and destined to live at home into her 30s

SHORT ANSWER

Explain, in words a two-year-old can understand, why mommy can have wine, but a toddler cannot.

GROUP DISCUSSION

Read the following list of parenting decisions. When your group has come to an agreement, circle those that are associated with well-adjusted children, and place an X by the ones associated with 90% of America’s prison population, SIDS, and/or autism. Be prepared to share your results with the class.

-nap schedules

-breastfeeding

-adaptability

-co-sleeping

-immunizations

-structure

-lack of structure

-circumcision

-vaginal, unmedicated birth

-homeschooling

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