Memo to Three Year Old Slackers

To: American Three-Year-Olds

From: America's Education Reform Thought Leaders'

Re: Get to work, you lazy slackers

It has come to our attention that your older brothers and sisters have been showing up to Kindergarten completely unprepared for the requirements of a rigorous education. It is time to nip this indolent behavior in the bud. You probably don't even know what 'indolent" means, do you? Dammit -- this is exactly why Estonia and Singapore are challenging the U.S. for world domination!

It's time for you to understand -- the party is over. We waited patiently for you to get potty trained and weaned off breast feeding on your own schedule, and that was probably a mistake because it led you to believe that you could just do things when you're good and ready. Well, no more. We're on to you. We saw you spend all that time crawling instead of walking because walking was just tooo haaard. Wah, wah, wah. We're done coddling you. The state has a schedule for you, and you are damn well going to get with it. You got to float around all free and easy in your Mommy's non-rigorous womb, and that's enough time off for anyone.

No, I don't want to see the pretty picture that you drew, unless you can explain what sources and data contributed to your compositional choices. You really need to be synthesizing two or more disparate sources for your pictures. And stick to the prompt -- I said draw a picture of an important Sumerian ceremony, not a bunny and a sun. And stop getting up every ten seconds to go look at something. You need to start learning how to focus properly. Sit in that chair and draw for the next 90 minutes without getting up.

Sitting will be good preparation for testing. Of course we're going to test you. How else will we know whether or not you are on track for college? Yes, I know your Mommy says she loves you and you can do anything, but what the hell does she know. Only a good solid expensive standardized test can tell us whether or not you are college material. Stop whining and get your pudgy little hand wrapped around that mouse. C'mon -- show some grit.

I know this is a lot to take in, and we really would have started last year when you were two, but frankly, all you would say was "no" over and over again. It's possible that terrible twos are the educational barrier that we can't break past. But now you're three, and all we have to break you of is this tendency to be distracted by childlike wonder and joy, and this ridiculous desire to play all the time. We must get you ready for Kindergarten, or you will never get into a good college and then we won't have the workers we need to compete globally and our leaders will lose supreme command of the universe and our corporations will have access to fewer markets. You don't want that, do you? You don't know what "compete globally" means? See, this is what we're talking about. Go sit down and write a six-sentence paragraph utilizing multiple sources about economic developments in post-agrarian societies, using non-fiction sources from government websites.

Look, kid. Everybody wants you to be Kindergarten-ready, so you've got to practice sitting inert, taking senseless tests, and being properly compliant. You need experience in going days at a time without playing, and I'm a little concerned that your napping is getting out of hand. And don't think your teacher is going to let you off the hook -- we know how soft and wimpy she is, and we've taken care of her.

Does this apply to all three year olds? Well, no, actually. If one of the servants read this to you, this is not going to apply to you. Everybody else had better shape up.

Cross-posted from Curmudgucation.