Tuesday, September 18, 2012
What motivates them?
One of the things that I love most (but is also very challenging) about teaching my own children is learning what motivates them. Of course, what motivates them in one area does not necessarily motivate them in another, but still, it's fun.
Faith and I have been butting heads about a few areas this year (actually this one area started last year) and one is looking up words in the dictionary. I was the kind of child who did. Loved it! Loved learning the meaning of words, and I guess that is why getting a degree in journalism came naturally to me.
To Faith it does not come naturally. Spelling does not come naturally (first child in four for that to happen!) so she fights me every time she has to look up a word.
Last week I told Faith a story about when I was in fifth grade and Sister So and So (sorry -- awful memory) held classroom dictionary races. One sheet of paper with a list of words, given a timed period, and we had to write the guide words from the dictionary for each word on the paper. I won. A lot. As a kid who was generally ignored in the gymnasium when picking teams (there was no hopscotch team!), I excelled in looking up words in the dictionary. God love Sister So and So for giving me that boost of confidence!
Anyway, after I told Faith that story she must have decided that her mom was never gonna beat her in looking up a word in the dictionary again. This morning she had an exercise in her spelling book which required her to look up some words. Without even being told to get to work, she was looking up words and timing herself.
A little competitive that one is!
Sadly, I doubt if classrooms today have enough dictionaries to hold dictionary races.