Monday, September 19, 2011

Lessons from Little House

Our family enjoys watching Little House on the Prairie, and in an episode we watched last Friday, the kids had a conversation which I found rang so true. Mary was trying to force her little sister Carrie (around age 3) to work on her alphabet, while Carrie wanted to draw pictures. It is important for children to learn things at their own pace, and this was a reminder to me also not to push W too much with writing when it's not what he wants to do, since he has a lot of time to work on that and boys of this age are somewhat notorious for not wanting to write. 

Here's the transcript of that particular scene from Little House (first season, For the Love of Johnny Johnson episode):

Mary: Here, Carrie. Let's make letters. (proceeds to start writing on the slate)
Carrie: Pictures.
Mary: No, Carrie, we're going to make letters.
Carrie: Pictures.
Mary: Letters.
Carrie: Pictures!
Mary: Letters!
Carrie: Pictures!
Laura: Let her draw! Why do you always have to spoil everything, anyway?
Mary: I don't know what you're talking about.
Laura: You do too. We always used to have fun walking home, and now all you do is show off playing "teacher."
Mary: That's silly.

(continues into an argument and Laura storms off)...

I know W will master the lower case alphabet someday, but he is 6 and many times would rather play outside or do other projects, so sometimes I need to let it go. :) I want to encourage him to write some letters or postcards more often to use that as practice time instead of forcing the workbooks every day.

We have our first Little House book club meeting of the fall on Friday, and we'll be attempting to make some corn cob dolls. We are starting the book By the Shores of Silver Lake by Laura Ingalls Wilder this week. 

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