Children of average ability

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Children of average ability

Postby tamarind » Fri Dec 26, 2008 4:35 pm

My younger boy, who is 4 years 3 months old now, has average learning ability.

Although he is able to read well, he still cannot write all the 26 letters, upper and lower case. He tends to write his numbers and letters in mirror images. I tried to let him practice by more, but I could not let him write more than 30 letters or numbers a day. He will complain that he is tired, or lose his concentration.

Any ideas about what to do ?

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Re: Children of average ability

Postby jedamum » Fri Dec 26, 2008 4:48 pm

tamarind,

not many 4yo can read, so i guess your boy is not totally 'average'. :wink:

as for writing, you'll be surprised how much progress they'll make when they go from K1 to K2. In a span of 1 yr or so, from not being able to blend phonics, my boy can read and write by the time he was in mid of K2. somehow, his 'learning system' matured.

meanwhile, i guess what you can only do now is through regular practices at home. for me last time, for those tracing booklets, we did only one line per page per day. one page uppercase, one page lower case, one page no. like that already 3 lines. my emphasis all along has been knowledge aquisition more than writing neatly.

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Postby hmsg » Fri Dec 26, 2008 6:17 pm

mine is going to 5yo... he writes at most 2 pages a day... most of time are spend on reading and answering questions... they will pick up fast in kindergarden...

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Postby tamarind » Fri Dec 26, 2008 6:36 pm

jedamum,
It took me a lot of effort and patience to teach my boy to read over the past year. I have to drill him to learn phonics through many repetitions. I almost vomited blood. He can read simple books like the cat in the hat by Dr Seuss now, but there are still many words that he need to learn.

Actually I don't really understand why he can recognize many words, but he is still not able to write each of the letters and numbers correctly. He will be in K1 next year. At this rate, I am worried that he may not be able to learn to write in sentences by K2.

I also let him write using those tracing booklets. He can write the same letter 10 times. The next moment when I asked him to write the letter on his own, he will write it in mirror image again :cry: He even writes his english name from right to left :cry:
Last edited by tamarind on Fri Dec 26, 2008 6:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby tamarind » Fri Dec 26, 2008 6:37 pm

hmsg wrote:mine is going to 5yo... he writes at most 2 pages a day... most of time are spend on reading and answering questions... they will pick up fast in kindergarden...


I thought that most kindergarten practice learn through play. They don't drill the kids by making them write for hours.

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Postby hmsg » Fri Dec 26, 2008 11:13 pm

tamarind wrote:
hmsg wrote:mine is going to 5yo... he writes at most 2 pages a day... most of time are spend on reading and answering questions... they will pick up fast in kindergarden...


I thought that most kindergarten practice learn through play. They don't drill the kids by making them write for hours.


The is to get him trace the outline... so that his alphabets n numbers are not too big and fat... :P :P

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Postby EN » Sat Dec 27, 2008 8:41 am

Tamarind wrote
Although he is able to read well, he still cannot write all the 26 letters, upper and lower case.


He is still young & primary one is still 2 years away.Ability to read at 4, is not an average kid.

If your son is not able to recite A to Z, best way to learn is singing the alphabets song. But I don't think that is the case right?

For remembering of letters, dd kindy taught her by getting her to fill up missing alphabets. eg A, B, ___, ___, E, F, ___. Do it slowly & keep rotating the missing alphabets. You will be able to spot which are the alphabets he is prone to forget. My dd will sing in order to fill up the blanks.

Tamarind wrote
He tends to write his numbers and letters in mirror images.


I was told that mirror image problem will lessen gradually. By P1 (early/mid/end), the error should reduce to a minimal.

Tamarind wrote
but I could not let him write more than 30 letters or numbers a day.


Up to which number you are trying to teach? If increasing of numbers, I would go for number pattern (err... that was how I learn to write my numbers) which I pass on to dd & ds has same thought. Eg those that have the sound ending with "teen", the first number is 1 which will follow by 1 to 9. Those that have sound starting with twenty will have the first number as 2 follow by 1 to 9 in the second number. Can also teach multiples of tens by using this chart but just take one step at one time.

1 11 21
2 12 22
3 13 23
4 14 24
5 15 25
6 16 26
7 17 27
8 18 28
9 19 29
10 20 30

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Postby jedamum » Sat Dec 27, 2008 10:40 am

tamarind wrote: He will be in K1 next year. At this rate, I am worried that he may not be able to learn to write in sentences by K2.

tamarind,
I can understand the vomitting blood part - I still vomit blood (now) sometimes :? . From unable to recognise words to being able to recognise words but unable to decipher their meaning, then to slowing understanding what he is reading, I went through that when my boy was in K1 all the way through to K2. Nowadays, sometimes he can read, but still can't comprehend (for problem sums and instructions) what he is reading :roll: (he is facing this problem for his chinese now too..ie can recognise the words, but will misintepret the sentence).
It takes time, and you still have a fair bit of time on your hand, so fret not.

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Postby tamarind » Sun Dec 28, 2008 12:04 am

EN wrote:Tamarind wrote
Although he is able to read well, he still cannot write all the 26 letters, upper and lower case.


He is still young & primary one is still 2 years away.Ability to read at 4, is not an average kid.

If your son is not able to recite A to Z, best way to learn is singing the alphabets song. But I don't think that is the case right?

For remembering of letters, dd kindy taught her by getting her to fill up missing alphabets. eg A, B, ___, ___, E, F, ___. Do it slowly & keep rotating the missing alphabets. You will be able to spot which are the alphabets he is prone to forget. My dd will sing in order to fill up the blanks.

Tamarind wrote
He tends to write his numbers and letters in mirror images.


I was told that mirror image problem will lessen gradually. By P1 (early/mid/end), the error should reduce to a minimal.

Tamarind wrote
but I could not let him write more than 30 letters or numbers a day.


Up to which number you are trying to teach? If increasing of numbers, I would go for number pattern (err... that was how I learn to write my numbers) which I pass on to dd & ds has same thought. Eg those that have the sound ending with "teen", the first number is 1 which will follow by 1 to 9. Those that have sound starting with twenty will have the first number as 2 follow by 1 to 9 in the second number. Can also teach multiples of tens by using this chart but just take one step at one time.

1 11 21
2 12 22
3 13 23
4 14 24
5 15 25
6 16 26
7 17 27
8 18 28
9 19 29
10 20 30



EN,
At the beginning of this year, when my boy was 3 years 3 months old, he still could not recognize all the 26 letters, both upper and lower case. He could not differentiate between "b" and "d", and a few other letters. I got so bored teaching him the letters over and over again, I decided to try teaching him phonics, even before he could recognize all the letters. Thanks to the the Leapfrog DVD, which he watched for more than one year, he knows all the letter sounds very well. I guess I managed to find an effective method to teach him, using cards to drill him consistently. Somehow he has no problem reading words containing "b" or "d". I think that is because when the letters are put together, like "dog", "had" or "hide", it is easier for him to read.

Now after one year, although he can read many words, when I give him only the letters "b" and "d", he is still not sure about which letter is "b" or "d".

My boy is certainly not high ability, and he is also not low ability. He is of average ability, which is perfectly fine. Most children are of average ability. When children of average ability are taught using effective methods, and they put in enough hardwork, they can also do quite well.

I figure out how to teach him to read, but I am totally lost at how to teach him to write :(

I actually ask him to write all the numbers from 0 to 9, repeat 3 times. The next moment he will write the numbers 2,3,4,5,6,7,9 in mirror images, he is OK with 1 and 8 because the mirror images are the same. He can count confidently up to 30. But when he writes 2 digit numbers, it is also the wrong way round. He also writes many letters in mirror images. He knows how each letter looks like, but when he writes, he cannot remember which way to curve. I think in K1 they are going to write words, really don't know how he is going to follow up.

I bought new tracing books for him to practice writing. When he is better at writing individual numbers, I will definitely try your method of number patterns.


jedamum wrote:
tamarind wrote: He will be in K1 next year. At this rate, I am worried that he may not be able to learn to write in sentences by K2.

tamarind,
I can understand the vomitting blood part - I still vomit blood (now) sometimes :? . From unable to recognise words to being able to recognise words but unable to decipher their meaning, then to slowing understanding what he is reading, I went through that when my boy was in K1 all the way through to K2. Nowadays, sometimes he can read, but still can't comprehend (for problem sums and instructions) what he is reading :roll: (he is facing this problem for his chinese now too..ie can recognise the words, but will misintepret the sentence).
It takes time, and you still have a fair bit of time on your hand, so fret not.


When I teach my boy to read, I have to put him on my lap, hold his finger to point at each word. Every time he reads 3 to 4 words, he will start to look at something else and move his finger away. I have to catch his hand and make him focus again. I try my best not to scream at him. I will bribe him with his favourite DVD or a small piece of chocolate, or threaten to give all his toys away, etc. Although I only let him read for 5 to 10 minutes, I always feel like I am suffering from internal bleeding after that. He does not fully comprehend what he is reading now. I really have a lot to work on for the next 2 years !
Last edited by tamarind on Sun Dec 28, 2008 12:31 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Postby sleepy » Sun Dec 28, 2008 12:17 am

My younger girl going K1 next year too. I didn't ask her to practice writing letters regularly.

Her only practice is when doing her abacus homework which requires her to write 10 numbers in one page. Her handwriting depends on her mood. If in a good mood, she will write the numbers within the answer box. Otherwise, she will write all over the page. Her name is also written in small letters & capital letters mixed together

K1 and K2 will have plenty of opportunity to write. Slowly will improve, dont' worry

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