Monday, June 23, 2014

Learning Together

So things have been feeling a little neglected here of late - you would think with 2 at school I should have more time!! Last week I actually did some proper professional work and it has been taking up a lot of brain space. ( I know look at me - one day of working and I forget myself!)

Anyway... I was talking to another mama about strategies for reading at home today and we brainstormed some ideas and she suggested I should put some on here. So for the next few weeks/months? I'm going to do a series called 'Learning Together' aimed at primary children and their parents.

At this time of the term (with 2 weeks left) it can feel like all the wheels are falling off. People (big and little) are tired and over it and trudging through 7 more pages and making dinner and keeping everyone on track and out of the pantry - weeeeeelllllllll it can all just seem too much!

This can be exacerbated by children who 'can't do it'. And you know what? You can tell them until you are purple in the face that you know they can, that they are clever, they have done it before...blah, blah and you can see the sparks aren't connecting.

So, these posts are about shaking things up a little. Yes you probably need to read 'properly' most nights and do the spelling the way the teacher wants and repeat basic facts (or whatever your school expects). These ideas are just some ways to turn things upside down now and again and make you all smile and give your wee ones and yourself a break from the monotony and the homework crabbiness.

1. Backwards Reading
 Start at the back of the book. Read the last page first - guess what might have happened before this page. Sensible ideas, silly ideas the more ideas the better. Make each other laugh. (remember the point is to do it differently and make it fun). Ask other family members to join in. Give out silly points - if they did run over a dinosaur when we read it you get 1,000 points but if my idea about flying starfish was right then I get 10,000. etc.

 Predicting and making connections between characters is an important part of reading comprehension and if the ideas are off the wall then think about how you are encouraging creativity and you can tell your child at the end of the book - 'I actually thought your ideas were more exciting that the authors, maybe you could use those next time you write a story for your teacher'.

I'll probably start with reading ideas (as reading together forms the major part of homework in the primary years) but if you have any particular areas of learning together you'd love some ideas for please let me know and I'll put my thinking cap on, I love having a challenge to come up with solutions to. :o) (I used to be a teacher once in a very scary kingdom long ago!)

Create Hope Inspire

love you more than a fresh idea to get the ball rolling xxxx