Saturday, January 8, 2011

Try and try again

That’s what you have to do when home schooling a child with a learning difference.  Consistency is key, yet so is experimenting.

Today Helana and I began our journey into addition recall.  We’ve been using manipulatives to answer questions like, “how many do we have if we add two more blocks”, but today I pulled out the flash cards. I wanted to see if she could recall at all what we’ve been doing.

Begin at the beginning, that’s what I say. (I’m brilliant, I know) We began with 0+0 all the way through 0+12.  She can tell me that zero means “none”, but I am unsure if she really grasps that because she could not tell me that “none” plus 1 equals one.  So we pulled out the blocks.  She started with 0 blocks.  I say, “Okay, what do we have if I add two blocks to the table”.  “Count,”
she said.  So she counted two.  Then I said, “So, you started with zero blocks but I added two and now you have two.  So zero plus 2 is how many?”  “Three”, she says. 

We circled around this for a few more tries before I just pulled out the flashcards again.  I held them up and began going through them one by one, without asking for a response from her.  When we got to 0+8, I said, “Zero plus eight equals…” and she said “eight”.  She continued from there on up to 12.

I am finding with Helana that explanations confuse her.  I think that is why she struggles with sounding out simple words.  I need for a concept to be broken down and explained before I understand it, thus, that is how I am inclined to teach.  That doesn’t always work for my daughter.  Just reciting facts, going through flash cards work for her in just about every instance.  Repeat. Repeat. Then she gets it.  That is why she can easily read “what” and “look” without a lesson on “wh” or “oo”; going through flash cards.  As far as her computer lessons, she tries and tries again until the programmed voice tells her it is correct.

I feel very uncomfortable with her “learning” this way because I do not know if she actually KNOWS the material or is just memorizing.  Then again, if that is what helps her navigate life then so be it.

1 comment:

Kristine said...

I think I may agree with you Marcia. If that is the best way she can get it, then you do that. Who am I though??? lol