I have not forgot about the letter of the day activities. Today I spend the day making new masks for my family. I made masks in March with things I had on hand and today I ventured out to the fabric store and purchased materials to make masks. I am making each of us 3 masks. I know I’ll need more if we have to wear masks to work/school in the fall, but it is a start. I am making my masks with ties, I can never get the ear pieces to sit on my head right, and again if we have to wear them at school for certain parts of the day, the tied masks we can wear around our necks. (I just foresee one of my sons taking it off and forgetting where he put it down.
Ok… so here is my real post for today… I often have conversations with concerned parents about “Why is my child struggling to learn ____?” Since most of my students are 4/5, my main answer is they aren’t ready… ok I don’t put it exactly that way, but it is the truth… they aren’t ready.
Just as children do not learn to sit, crawl, walk and talk at the same exact rate and time, they do not learn academic skills at the same rate either. Also, let me break down for you a bit what it takes for a child to truly master a learning skill. You might be shocked!
OK, let’s pick something easy… learning colors. This is a skill that should be mastered by 4 and is one of the red flags that concerns teachers for possible learning issues, BUT there are many levels to learning… so here we go
- First, a child needs to distinguish that there is a difference between the colors. This is why we focus on assessing the basic colors (red, blue, yellow, green, orange, purple, pink, black, white, brown)
- Then, they need to understand that the word color means the color of the object…. yes that sounds strange, but think about it.
- Next, they need to understand that each of these colors has a different name associated with it.
- Once they understand that each color has a different name, they begin making the connection between the color and the color word.
- At this time, most children can point out items that are a certain color, “Show me the red ball.” “Point to the yellow duck” This skill only required understanding of the color word connection.
- Then they need to be able to recall the word on their own. What color is this? (pointing at a green crayon). This skill is harder because your child needs to connect memory to the word color, the color itself AND then find the color word in his/her memory bank and be able to produce the word with confidence.
Yep… that is a lot. And yes, they can do it. Some just take a bit longer (and that is only if your child is not color blind, but that wasn’t the point of this explanation). Understanding, retaining, and expressing information takes a lot of work. A lot of processing. It is a lot. Some children come to these skill easily, others take a bit more time. They will get there.