Tuesday, January 08, 2008


"School" was perfect today. Calm. No conflicts with time. No arguments about content. Cadence only said, "I don't get it," six times instead of sixty. I didn't lose my patience one time. Rare, but I can still appreciate how wonderful it could be, if every day were like this.

I struggle with Riley's schoolwork. Through the normal parenting stuff (singing songs, nursery rhymes, fairy tales, "look, radishes! See the sign says 'radishes'." etc.), my youngest child has learned all her letters, numbers, shapes and colors. Essentially, she's mastered preschool content without ever attending preschool. She knows several letter sounds and can sound out a lot of small words. She writes letters to people, asking the spelling of Every. Single. Word. BUT, she is not ready for Kindergarten work. Adding she can do, but put the numbers on paper and she's lost. She lacks the motor skills needed to write "right", and knows it (and it seems she's another perfectionist - great!), so she often refuses to practice writing letters and numbers. Sequencing is easy for her as long as it's a pictorial 3-step easy thing, like a whole apple, an apple with a bite out of it, and a well-eaten core. Anything beyond that and she's frustrated and refuses to do it.

Now before you get the wrong idea, I want it to be clear that I have never, EVER asked her to do any of this directly. She's four. There's no way I'm pushing her at all. Chad and Cadence start their schoolwork and Riley starts begging. "I want schoolwork too!" She loves workbooks, but has declared the preschool workbooks "baby books". When I give her the harder stuff, she refuses to do it, and of course I say, "You don't have to if you don't want to." But she DOES want to do SOMETHING, just not that. There have been a few workbooks she really likes, but I actually take those away from her after a few pages, afraid she'll finish the book and have nothing to do tomorrow.. and then have a huge fit because I don't have anything for her to do. *Sigh*


Deanna said...

Allison does that "I don't get it" thing too. Drives me nuts. Questions like, "Now why do we add the ones separately" are fine, but the generic "I don't get it" ERGH!

Meredith was like your Riley. Now she is school age and ready and she LOVES doing school. I hope that doesn't go away! I anticipate Lydia will start asking to do school soon too. Right now she is content to color while her sisters work, but I don't see that lasting long.

Regarding going to college...just think of all that would teach your kids! Especially your girls. So not purely selfish! I say continue exploring it and if it feels right, go for it! Even though I am home with the girls and will remain here for the next 14 years, I have zero regrets regarding my college degrees. Yet I think if I didn't go to college I would have regrets.

Heather said...

Deanna, that's exactly why I hate "I don't get it." After explaining the whole process over for the millionth time I'll say, "You don't get WHAT? WHAT PART don't you get?" She shrugs and says, "I just don't get it." *head explodes*

Good point on the college. It's still in the "thinking about" stage right now, and planning and financing could still make all the difference.

Holly said...

No good advice on the hsing. My mom got her phD at 50 and is now a happily employed college professor after being home with us all through our schooling (an educaiton prof. whose biggest regret is that she didn't hs us). 30 is so not too old.

Ami said...

No benefit to your family?


In MY family, if momma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy... so what about that? If you feel that you're broadening your horizons and you're happy, it has to rub off, at least a little.


MOM #1 said...

On the college thing, GO FOR IT!

We're never too old to learn. It's great to exercise your brain, and if it makes you feel more accomplished, than more power to you.

Girl Power - we deserve IT ALL!!!

Heather K. said...

My 4 year old begs for school work. I make sure I have anywhere from 1-4 pages of work for her. Some days she does them all and some days she only does one and then wants to play. I leave it up to her. I don't ever want to tell her that she is too young to learn. I will never be too old to learn.

My mom is 55 and working on her RN after working in corrections for over 25 years. Grandma thinks its a mid-life crisis. If it is, it is one of the best kind to have.

Anonymous said...

Our youngest insisted on reading to us at the age of 4. Read half way through the preprimer and would start again. It was so annoying. It was memorized. She is 10 and is not a good reader, because she only does what is easy. She is great at the computer, the camera, the cellphone programming, essentially good at pushing buttons, and I do mean that metaphorically as well. Sometimes I worry, but I am sure it will work out, it did with the others.

I love when we have a good school day. I just wish there were less space between. Tomorrow will be a good day.

I have thought about college too on occasion. I do have a degree already in Food Science and Technology, but I have thought of doing other things. I get over it eventually when I get busy with other things. You should do what you think will work for you.

Summer Fae said...

What I started to do with my daughter was make an ABC book. We did differnt activities & crafts for each letter. When we finished them, I put them into a 3-ring binder. I used http://www.carlscorner.us/, http://www.first-school.ws/, and http://www.mrsalphabet.com/links.html to get my ideas.