Friday, October 8, 2010

why dads should be more involved

A week ago, I logged in to the school's parent portal to check on Big M's school grades, etc. I noticed a chart of his math learning progress. According to the chart, he is at 1st grade math level. Because of this, I decided to step it up a notch when it comes to our daily math problems. Sometimes in the morning, or at night, I give him made-up math problems to think through and solve - like if I were going bringing up clean clothes up the stairs and made it 8 steps, but I dropped a shirt 3 steps behind so I had to go fetch it. How many steps total did I climb by the time I got to the top of the stairs. He works this kinds of problems out in his head, and when applicable, he tries it out himself. In this instance, he climbed up the stairs, backtracked and then went all the way up.

I have no idea whether this is kindergarten math or not, but seeing the graph served as an incentive to keep it up. One night's problem was how many total minutes did he serve in time-out if I gave him 5 minutes, but had to keep starting over whenever he talked after only having completed 1 minute.  He could also think through simple multiplication and division when I asked how much money should I give each of them (him and 2 sisters) if I only had $30.

Yesterday he came home with a note that they are learning "systems" at school, and how a system has many parts that must work together for the system to function. Immediately I gave him an example: our family is a system and when Mommy gets sick and can't clean, and everyone decides not to clean, the house gets all messy. I thought that was a very good example.

Before bed, I mentioned that Big M's class is learning about system and immediately, he provided an example of a car. I looked at him and started to laugh. Here I am giving time-outs and money and house as examples and like a man, he comes up with a car as an example. I told Daddy that he has to work with Big M or all he's ever going to learn is how to run a house. Not necessarily a bad thing, but still.

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