Encouraging

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Malika, Jan 27, 2012.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    I can hardly believe how neat and fluent Jacob's writing has got. The way they teach reading and writing in France (I know HaoZi is not in favour of this :)) is to practise the individual letters over and over again before the children necessarily know what they are or how to read. They start to teach reading at age 6+. So at the moment, J cannot read at all but he copies out, again and again, the individual cursive letters. He can write his own name, and that's it. Anyway, it must be tedious but it seems to be paying off in that, having been worried some time ago that he had dysgraphia, his writing is now to me like an older child's. I can't believe he has problems with fine motor skills seeing this. But, in the absence of any evaluations, it's difficult to know for sure about any of this.
    I just would like his teacher to understand that he really does have ADHD and that what he is doing at school is a really big achievement. But I don't think she's going to realise that any time soon.
     
  2. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Is he actually learning cursive writing? Or do we call it different things? If he is, wow... if he is getting that I would never worry about his writing again.
     
  3. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Well, as ever, I'm not sure if what AE and BE mean by the same word IS the same, so I checked - and yes, we both mean the same thing by cursive writing! Honestly, I'm surprised, as I say. Jacob writes words in cursive writing (that he can't read yet) that are, to me, really neat and impressive.
     
  4. buddy

    buddy New Member

    ummmm My 15 yr old barely can write his name in cursive. I know he has delays but he is not younger than a preschool level in that area...

    So, he can do all the printed letters too? Yes, that really IS impressive.
     
  5. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    He just COPIES them, Buddy - he doesn't actually know most of them. That's the sort of thing they do all day: they have a sheet with the example of a letter and ruled lines on it and they have to copy it lots of times. Then they write out a few words in cursive script, again several times.
    by the way, an idea I had - and I don't know whether this might be of interest to other "physical" kids - is to ask him to trace out the shape of the letters he knows (not many!) on his bike. He really likes doing this.
     
  6. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I figured he didn't actually know words or anything yet but I still think forming them is amazing. Yes, anything to play with the letters is fun and a great way to learn.

    Does he like to try to recognize any words like his name, stop signs, etc??? That is a fun thing to do. Q actually learned most of his reading this way because it is an interest of his to read bill boards, sides of buildings, names of offices, restaurants etc.
     
  7. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Well, he hasn't even got that far in terms of "decoding" yet. He will sometimes say to me, spontaneously - oh look that pattern on the ground is like a "J" or a circular object is like an "O" - but other than that he doesn't spot letters around the place and I haven't been bringing it up myself. I just read him lots and lots of stories :)
    Interesting, today I was talking to a Canadian friend about all this and she was saying some non-Canadian friends of hers think that there's too much stress and pressure in the north American system and it shouldn't be pushed as it (apparently?) is. I guess I just feel it should come from the child. I'm in no hurry, I think it will come when he is ready. At the same time he is probably "behind" the girls in his class. As he riding some of his letters on his bike this lunchtime, one of his classmates who lives near us was there and I asked her if she knew all the letters of the alphabet (just interested :)) "Oh yes," she said, as if that were all old hat now for her... Whereas J just knows the letters in his name and a few others.
     
  8. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Darn Girls, LOL
     
  9. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Malika...
    If J were diagnosed with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) at age 5, the Occupational Therapist (OT) would be prescribing... exactly what he is doing. Repetitive practice without the pressure of actually having to USE the results. No time pressure (not taking notes or anything like that). Just neuromotor practice.

    Which is how they USED to teach things in this country.
    And part of why fine motor skills seem to be much more of an issue now, than they were 30 or 60 years ago!
     
  10. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Well, that's encouraging too, then! Maybe we are in the right place after all...
     
  11. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm really impressed. More and more American schools are not bothering to teach cursive..at all. My sister who has multiple degrees in early childhood education swears that our schools don't grasp that it is better to delay parts of education until children are devlopmentally ready. As a result alot of kids lag behind very early and don't feel confident as the curriculum expands. DDD
     
  12. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Yes, Britain's gone the same way, DDD. Only in sensible countries like Sweden and Norway do children learn through their play as a priority in the early years - many studies have shown that this is the best way to ensure future academic and social ability.
     
  13. Ktllc

    Ktllc New Member

    Cursive and fountain pens! That's how I learned. I actually wanted to get Partner a fountain pen and teach him... office max does not even carry fountain pens! LOL Might have to ask my parents to send me a cheap one.
    On the other hand, I really like how they teach Partner in our local school. His kindergarten teacher created multiple groups within the class and adapts the material according to the kids level. Basically one kid could be learning advance reading but be in an easier group for math.
    I don't know if it is the way the whole school works or just this one teacher.
    But I believe it is a good philosophy. It will be interesting to see how a difficult child does in such an environment.
    Malika, I'm glad you can see some positive in J's school. Maybe list everything that you like and things you would change.
    It might help to ultimately make a decision.
    But you know the say "the grass is greener on the other side" and the answer is "yes, there is more sh*t"
    ;)
     
  14. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Is V going to follow Partner to this school, Klltc?
    Well, from the beginning and throughout I've been very positive about the small numbers at J's school - this is absolutely crucial for him and makes a huge difference. It means the teacher can capture and hold his attention. In a large class, left to his own devices he would be... doing anything but what he was "supposed" to be doing. The usual thing with children with special needs/learning differences/disorders.
    The place I seem to have come to is that it's best to stay at this school until J has learnt to read and write, so until the end of next academic year. It just feels like he's now launched on a process that it would be foolish to interrupt mid-stream.
     
  15. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I do know what you mean, but I did laugh a tiny bit at the first thought ... when you said till he learns to read and write ... and then you said so, after next academic year?? that is a pretty short time to learn totally how to read and write! I know what you mean though, (at least I hope I do, LOL... you think J will be ready for college after K? all the reading and writing skills he needs for that???? HAHA! Just joshing you)
     
  16. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    lol, buddy. There's a kind of "declic" as they call it in French (don't know what the English equivalent is right now, if there is one) which happens and a child starts being able to decode words on the written page and read. That is what I mean (as you realise :)) I think once you thave that, the rest is... development of the skill but the skill is in place. In my own memory, it happened so fast (might be falsifying of memory) - learning to read and then being able to read all sorts of books.

    Oh, the word is "click", of course!! Just as well I'm not a translator.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2012
  17. whatamess

    whatamess New Member

    Maybe she does understand that J is different from the other children, but does not label it "ADHD". Maybe she feels she will teach him and he will learn, and that the amount of effort he puts into it is irrelevant as long as her end result has been achieved. Maybe realizing that J will have to work harder to achieve what his peers do easily and not halting or slowing the process because of disability is of most benefit.
     
  18. buddy

    buddy New Member

    You just helped me remember a great childhood memory. I remember being in church when I was maybe second grade... and I realized that I was actually seeing and reading the words in the song book as we were singing. I had always been on the page my mom would turn it to for me.... and I knew the songs, but I was actually following along and I was so proud of myself. Just wanted to thank you for that nice memory!
     
  19. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    That's an interesting perspective! I like it when people put things in a way I would not have thought of myself... one of the benefits of a forum :) You're probably right. My concern is just whether J can take the pace without any special accommodations at all. Just tonight (not for the first time), when he was tired, he started getting upset and crying about school, saying he doesn't want to go, that he has to "work, work, work", that he gets tired, he gets hungry, it's too much... It will doubtless all be forgotten by Monday morning but somewhere he's reflecting a reality.
     
  20. Ktllc

    Ktllc New Member

    Malika, don't take it the wrong way. But my answer to it would have been something like: "we all work very hard in the family and so should you. I am very proud of you. Don't give up, keep working hard and you will keep making lots of progress". The day he works very hard and does NOT make progress, than you need accomodations.
    Partner is advance academically and things just come easy to him. I want him to have work ethic: I signed him up for afterschool tutoring in which he works at 1st grade level (instead of Kindergarten). This way he gets to experience what a challenge is.
    I know there is a limit to that logic. Sometimes kids will keep it together and still get burned out.
    But, maybe, show him that his hard work is teaching him a valuable lesson that he will keep for life.
     
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