Posts tagged learning to write

From the Pope “Parents’ vocation to educate children”

 

(Vatican Radio) In his catechesis at the General Audience on Wednesday, Pope Francis focused on the role of parents in the education of their children, which he called “an essential characteristic” of the family. 

To read more click the link below

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2015/05/20/general_audience_parents_vocation_to_educate_children/1145382

For more information about teaching in China click here.

Peter Legrove spends most of his time in front of a mixed bunch of kids trying to instill in them some semblance of the road to survive the future.

This article is copyright © peter legrove.

You can use this article on your website or ezine but leave the resource box intact.

All the best teaching in China

Teacher Peter

Church in Secondlife

Click here to go to church online

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment »

Teaching With Flashcards

rainbowChina

A big part of teaching kids is flashcards. Kids love pictures, mainly because ‘a picture tells a 1000 words’ and it is easier to remember a picture. Have a look at the videos to see how I introduce a picture. I usually get the kids to show the flashcards.

   Now with flashcards you can do many things. As long as the flashcards are in plastic covers or basically indestructible there is a lot you can do. But your flashcards will be ripped, screwed up, thrown around and whatever else little kids can do. And you will be amazed at what they can do. I have my flashcards in plastic folders and the kids still manage to rip some. At one stage two kids both wanted the same card, and they both had half each and were pulling as hard as they could. The card survived but only after I took it off them. So expect the unexpected.

     For kindergarten the most common game is find the card – you put about 6 to 10 cards on the floor and call out one card and the kids has to find the card. I used to hang the cards on the blackboard, if the blackboard is magnetic. I hang around 10 on the board just high enough, so the kids couldn’t grab the cards. Then draw lines down between the cards and draw a little hand on the board. 

     To draw the hand I would get a kid to put his or her hand on the board and then I would draw around it. Next I would line up up to 10 kids, call out the name of the card, and suddenly realize how much the kids didn’t understand. Then I would call out another name, then another and another. 

     I do everything fast and the kids are running all over the place. They loved it. Next I’d get another 10 and start all over again. And that usually meant drawing the hand again. As some kids sole aim in class is to rub out everything you write on the board. This is easy to set up, just takes a few minutes and the kids love it. And you can do it many times. The kids don’t seem to get bored as they are running all over the place, and there are new pictures.

     If you do this on the floor expect the cards to be thrown around, trampled on, pulled apart and generally destroyed. So try and use the blackboard. If the board is not magnetic I have problems. In one class I tied a piece of string across the blackboard and used clothes pegs to hold the cards. It was OK except the cards keep falling of the string and then the kids would rip them apart to give them back to me. Magnetic boards are the best.

     I like to make sentences up on the board and the kids love it. See the video. Even though there are a bunch of cards on the board, the kids love it, as long as it is fast and there are not to many cards on the board. In the videos I use lots of cards, but usually I don’t use that many as the kids get lost and lose interest. 

For more information about teaching in China click here.

Peter Legrove spends most of his time in front of a mixed bunch of kids trying to instill in them some semblance of the road to survive the future.

This article is copyright © peter legrove.

You can use this article on your website or ezine but leave the resource box intact.

All the best teaching in China

Teacher Peter

Church in Secondlife

Click here to go to church online

 

Leave a comment »

In Most Asian and European Countries Now the Children Learn English

In the growth economies of the world most parents want their children to learn English. And they are prepared to pay cold hard cash for after school and weekend classes even though the children learn English in school. While in the supposedly Developed English speaking world the experts have changed the way children learn to read and now kids are leaving school with below standard reading levels.

They changed the system from a very effective reading method to what we have nowadays. Yet in most foreign countries where English is taught in the classroom, the children are taught English using phonics. It is no wonder the children are leaving school better educated that we are in the west. English is a part of their way of life, and if they want to get ahead in the future they must know English. So children and English go together.

Now when children start to learn English as a second language they usually learn it very early. In Asia that usually means while they are still at kindergarten. Then at school they bring in the phonics in grade 5 when the children are 10 to 11 years old. Which is a good time to start the serious learning of English.

In families where the parents speak different languages you usually find the children struggle at school learning the language that is taught at school. But when they get to high school they are proficient in both languages. It is no wonder that Asian children are some of the best students even though English is not their first language. So it looks like English as a second language and children go together overseas. But here in the English speaking world the powers to be are doing their best try and stop struggling learners learning to read English.

For more information about teaching in China click here.

Peter Legrove spends most of his time in front of a mixed bunch of kids trying to instill in them some semblance of the road to survive the future.

This article is copyright © peter legrove.

You can use this article on your website or ezine but leave the resource box intact.

All the best teaching in China

Teacher Peter

Church in Secondlife

Click here to go to church online

 

Leave a comment »

Montessori Phonics Is Still Helping Children Learn To Read Even After 100 years

Phonics are the building blocks of learning to read. But lately they have taken a back seat to the Look See Method in some countries. Most students can learn to read, no matter what method they are being taught, but the struggling learners need phonics. It has been shown time and again, that phonics are a better way to learn to read, for struggling readers.

The Look See Method has the beautiful books with lots of pictures, while the phonic books are pretty drab, filled with rhyming text that don’t always make sense. But you need rhyming to learn to read. And students will learn to read using the Look See Method, but struggling students will have problems.

To be honest, I don’t know why some students learn to read easier than others, especially nowadays. But I think it has a lot to do with home life. Parents of reading kids help their kids. They don’t live in front of the tee vee, and they use the computer for knowledge, not to play games or watch videos. But that is not always the case. I had a brother and a sister in different classes, the sister was top of the class and the brother couldn’t even read. He left school to start a trade, and she went to uinversity.

In another extreme case, a girl was in the top of the class, every morning she could read the homework easily and perfectly. Then one day I asked her to read a different text in class, and she couldn’t read it. And I asked her why, and she said at night her daddy used to read the homework to her, and she would memorize it and spit it out the next day. I had serious problems with her, but with Montessori Phonics she finally learned to read. Montessori Phonics takes the student away from looking at the word to feeling the word, and that was the only way to get her to learn to read.

Back in my day when I went to school, we were taught synthetic phonics, where you learn the phonic sound then move onto words then sentences. Another method that has since become popular, is the phonics method where you start with sentences, and move back to words, then syllables, then right down to the phonic sound. Really it doesn’t matter which way your children learn to read, as long as they learn.

At the moment video and audio is taking over the internet, but to play around and work on the internet, you still have to be able to read and type. So to survive the future your children have to be able to read, write and type. Speed typing is a must for the future, as well as speed reading. There is so much information out there, that you need to process in work and everyday life, that you need to be able to process it very quickly. To survive the future you need these skills, and they all start with learning to read.

With the internet there are a number of online phonic sites, where you children can learn phonics and some are very good, I mean exceptional. But even with all the information on the internet some children do not learn by looking. Around sixty percent do, but reading starts in your ears, not with your eyes. You have to hear the phonic sound first, then match it with the written word. So if your children have problems learning to read, get their ears checked. There might be something mechanically wrong with their ears. Usually not the case. It is usually just a case of matching a learning method, with your child’s learning style.

I call this, the method of last resort, even though it has been around for over 100 years, and it started out teaching children with severe learning difficulties. This is the Montessori method of teaching reading, and if everything fails try this out. It is a hands on system of teaching reading. You just can’t plant your children in front of the computer, and expect the computer to do the teaching. You have to be there or an older sibling can help out. Basically you need to get hold of some sandpaper letters, whether block or cursive, depending on what you want to teach your children, then start teaching. You will also need a phonics chart, and some phonic sounds, which you can get of the internet for free. It is a very simple system, you make up a simple word, for example ‘cat’, in sandpaper letters. Then your child traces the sandpaper letters, while saying the word. You must emphasis the phonic sound, so your daughter can translate it to other words. Then repeat the system over and over again with many words that rhyme. A very effective system, it must be used when everything else has not worked. It is my last line of defense. If the Montessori system doesn’t work I’m lost. I don’t know if it works with dyslexic people, but it is worth a try.

Anyway for the future you need to be able to read, write, type and then learn to speed read. Probably in that order, except most students learn to read then go straight onto a keyboard, so writing gets left behind. Now it has been shown that people who write in longhand or cursive, write faster and they are also more creative. So if your children are aspiring to be creative writers, or into writing advertisements, then they should learn to write in cursive. Also at present when you sit an exam, you have to write in longhand not block letters. So until that changes, it might be an idea to bring in the cursive writing skills, to give your children the upper hand in exams.

To find out more about teaching reading using the Montessori method go to http://animalsdinosaursandbugs.com/Montessori.htm and click on the picture.

http://www.animalsdinosaursandbugs.com/

Peter Legrove spends most of his time in front of a mixed bunch of kids trying to instill in them some semblance of the road to survive the future.

This article is copyright © peter legrove.

You can use this article on your website or ezine but leave the resource box intact.

All the best teaching children

Teacher Peter

secondlifechurch2aa1

Leave a comment »

With The Pencil Going The Way Of The Dinosaur You Still Need To Know How To Teach Your Child To Write

Nowadays most schools let children print in block letters like the keys on a keyboard instead of teaching writing as in continuous cursive. Probably a lot of parents cannot see any benefit in teaching writing as their children spend more time on a keyboard than with a pen and notepad. With the influx of modern technology in the classroom and university it would seem that writing is going extinct. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Your children still need to be able to write so you, the parent, need to know how to teach your children to write. Teaching writing is not too difficult and once your children know how to write they can write on cards and write shopping lists.

I prefer the Montessori way of teaching writing and reading as it uses a hands on approach and can be used with a school textbook. The basics behind the Montessori approach is sandpaper letters. You make up the words your child is learning at school or kindergarten. And your child traces the sandpaper letter feeling the texture of the sandpaper under her fingertips. This feeling the letters, helps to implant the letters and words and how to write them in your child’s mind.

When tracing the words your child is actually going through the motions of writing without a pencil. This gets the hand and arm muscles read to start writing when your child picks up a pen. Writing like most learning takes time, and I think the Montessori approach with sandpaper letters actually shortens the time it takes for you to teach your child to write.

According to Maria Montessori some children learn to read first, while others learn to write first. It depends on the child. I have the child trace the new words or phonic sounds with Montessori sandpaper letters and this helps to write the new words in the child’s mind. While tracing the sandpaper letters the child is actually writing with her fingers so this is the start of the writing process.

Sometimes teaching writing too early can hinder learning to read in some children. Because writing takes a longer time than reading it can slow down the child as she spends more time trying to write. If your child is a slow writer just stick to reading.

The school system of today has no time for slow writers but the main problem has more to do with hand strength than slow writing. Under the Montessori system the child’s hand strength is built up every day. Therefore when they start to write the child can control the pencil.

If your child is having problems with writing, start by building up your child’s hand strength. This simple act seems to eliminate a lot of writing problems.

Under the Montessori system the child will start to write by themselves. After tracing the sandpaper letters the child will usually pick up a pencil and just start to write without any encouraging. The first part of the writing process is learning to hold a pencil and coloring in different sized shapes. This gets the muscles in the hand and arm ready for writing. The earlier children start to hold and use a pencil the earlier they will start to write.

I like the Montessori system of teaching writing and reading and this is the course I recommend

http://www.animalsdinosaursandbugs.com/Teaching-Reading.htm

Peter Legrove spends most of his time in front of a mixed bunch of kids trying to instill in them some semblance of the road to survive the future.

This article is copyright © peter legrove.

You can use this article on your website or ezine but leave the resource box intact.

All the best teaching your children

Teacher Peter

Church in Secondlife

Click here to go to church online

Leave a comment »

Is Writing Going The Way Of The Dinosaur

Some parents debate whether learning to write is necessary as all around them they see computers and keyboards. I sometimes wonder myself as I was brought up on a notepad and pencil and all around me kids are using computers. As a school teacher I still use the blackboard and chalk, but most of the young, new teachers use the computer and power point presentations. I have tried using the computer in the classroom but it didn’t suit me, as I like to stand and walk around. I think the kids prefer the blackboard as the teacher can create the lesson as they go. But the debate still continues whether students like using a computer in the classroom or not. We have already got the paperless office and for some courses in the university we have the paperless lecture. But they are basically to do with highly computerized courses and it is to the advantage of the student to use a computer. But not all courses need a computer.

Now back to school life. A lot of students have computers but there are a number of socially disadvantaged students in the lower area schools who can’t afford computers. These are the students without a voice only school teachers know about them. The people who do all the talking and want computers in the classroom, are the parents of the socially adjusted students not the socially inapt students. And most of the older teachers like me, don’t like computers because the students know more about them that the teacher. And most students are better on a keyboard that the teacher.

Anyway with the number of students who own computers you would think they would do their homework on a computer but not so. They do the research on a computer but then they hand in written assignments, albeit in printing not in longhand writing. Most children use the computer for entertainment as opposed to working on one and they have this mind set that the computer is a plaything not a work tool. People from my generation appreciate the computer because we know what life was like without one and the younger generation do not.

The computer is a great time saver as well as an extremely good time waster and a lot of students have mastered the time wasting side of the computer. They have to be taught how to use the computer as a time saving tool. At school we don’t do that, we just teach them how to type. And parents don’t bother, they just let them lose on the computer so they are not destroying the house.

One big change I have noticed that has been brought about by the computer is longhand writing verses printing. My generation all wrote in longhand but now nearly nobody writes in longhand, it is all in block letters. That is partly due to schools not teaching writing and also teachers using block letters. On the blackboard I use block because the students can read it but everywhere else I use longhand. The only time I use longhand is in a kindergarten where I teach Montessori writing with sandpaper letters to a bunch of kids after class.

Anyway I think the pencil will dominate over the keyboard as long as the students think the computer is an entertainment tool not a work machine. At present this thinking process only changes for some students while at school. I still don’t know why some students do their homework on a computer but I do know most of them don’t and most have access to a computer.

I like the Montessori system of teaching writing and reading and this is the course I recommend

http://www.animalsdinosaursandbugs.com/Teaching-Reading.htm

Peter Legrove spends most of his time in front of a mixed bunch of kids trying to instill in them some semblance of the road to survive the future.

This article is copyright © peter legrove.

You can use this article on your website or ezine but leave the resource box intact.

All the best teaching your children

Teacher Peter

secondlifechurch2aa1

Leave a comment »