So I had a bit of a breakthrough with my 1st grader. I notice when I review vocabulary words with him, if the word is a longer word like cardinal, he just guesses the word if he doesn’t immediately recognize it. But if I say to him “come on, you know what c-a-r-d-i-n-a-l spells, he would almost immediately recognize the word. So I got him in the habit of saying each letter when he doesn’t know a word and it seems to really help. When I went through a list of 25 words with him initially, he got 18 of 25. When we went over it a 2nd time, and I had him say each letter, he got 24 out of 25.
I’ve tried to give Max little routines for math, spelling and writing. Try to get him in the habit of doing things the same way each time. This is a challenge, because he seems to do it when I am looking over his shoulder, but as soon as I step away, or when he does work in school, he seems to do what comes easiest instead of the “routine” I tried to teach him. I’m sure if I keep stressing it, it will become part of his routine.
I guess we will see how he does on the next couple of tests and on the worksheets he does in class. Sometimes, you have to think outside of the box a bit, and listen to your child and find what works best for them. Teachers generally have one way of teaching things, and that doesn’t always work for everyone. And teachers are so swamped and overextended, that it’s really up to us as parents to work one on one with our kids.
His teacher this year doesn’t really communicate with the parents very well. So I’ve taken the initiative and e-mail her on a regular basis so I can be more aware of the things Max should be doing.
His last report card was really good, but things seem to be getting more difficult in the 3rd grading period. So I want to make sure we stay on top of things. Luckily math comes really easy for Max, and we don’t have to go over math very much, but the writing and reading definitely requires additional work at home.