Monday, April 26, 2010

Tricking the kids into learning

Ok, I know, it's not nice to trick people; but I hope in this case perhaps you will excuse me and that the ends justify the means.  Our newest addition comes to our family with many issues: one of which I call lack of cultural knowledge.  By cultural knowledge, I don't mean and understanding of different cultures, but just a general understanding of knowledge that would be expected of another person of the same age. So I have set about a plan to slowly break some of this down.  Unfortunately, DS2 is a typical child who thinks all learning is dumb and boring (Boy, did he get thrown into the wrong family - we are not likely to perpetuate this belief long). So despite not quite knowing what is going on or understanding quite what we are talking about half the time, he still insists on watching mindless cartoons and trying to avoid anything that seems to have any possibility of learning involved.  While somewhat jealous that the other two kids don't go to school, he is happy not to have "lessons" of his own or so he thinks. . .

During his school vacation this week, I started by playing Borderline card game with him.

  I just played it up as a new game that I wanted to try out.  We could try a few hands before we went on to Skip-bo.  Did you know by the way that Columbia is that capital of South Carolina AND also the name of another country?  Did you also know that West Virginia was an actual state and not just a directional portion of Virginia itself?  Do you know how small Rhode Island really is?

Then another day, I connivingly took out the Odyssey III talking globe

and played a round. Quickly, it wasn't my turn any more and he took right over.  You can only imagine the shocking information that this globe possessed: Equatorial New Guinea was near the Equator, Argentina was in South America, and Ireland was near England.

Finally, I tucked in some Brain Quest cards in the backseat of the car.

He is quizzing me non-stop.

Hmmmm! Do you think I should tell him that he's learning?

PS If you have any more games to recommend, I'd love to hear about them.  I figure this kind of learning is equivalent to when my mother used to put my medicine in jam:  it was too sweat to be something good for you.

1 comment:

Andy's Bethy said...

You haven't blogged in awhile, so I just wanted to drop by and make sure you and the crew were doing okay. Hope your summer is going well - blessings!