My ds 5 (6 in August) has been doing kindergarten this year–actually, I refer to it as “Kindergarten Light” because we have taken things pretty slowly 🙂 He is a very intelligent little boy, very curious and obedient. But here is the problem: the second we sit down with a workbook to learn letter sounds, numbers, etc., or practice any kind of writing skill, he shuts down almost immediately. He starts yawning, wanting to lay his head down, not using his helping hand while he writes, etc. He says “I’m so tired!” Things are a little better if we are on the computer, learning on Starfall or other educational software, but even then he asks if he can stop sooner than I would like him to. It has really limited the amount of time we spend on learning to read (I am using All About Reading Level 1) because he just doesn’t seem to have the attention span.
I have attributed this to being young and wanting to play, and so I limit our desk time to only 10 or 15 minutes. He enjoys read aloud stories and is attentive during them. What do you think? Just wait a bit longer for his maturity to catch up? Or is something else going on here? Anyone else have a similar experience?
I would probably drop the reading and writing curriculum for now and concentrate on reading to him and making reading something he wants to do by enticing him into it, leaving things lying around he will want to read but not rushing to read them to him. It can even be something as simple as a sign saying what’s for dinner. CM also recommended giving them letters they can manipulate and play with but not with any agenda.
At his age, 10 to 15 minutes is really longer than it seems like it should be. I wouldn’t push the workbooks or other curriculum materials right now. You will discover his best learning style (auditory? visual? kinesthetic?) over the next year or so if you just relax and observe him. Then you can choose activities that will make it easier for him to grasp concepts and increase his love for learning.
Maybe the idea of having a lot of print on a page before him is overwhelming. If he learns best by hearing, that could be the case. You won’t get very far by forcing him to look at the pages & complete them. Most children have a secondary learning style, so that might help things along. For example, I have a very visual daughter who also likes to work with her hands. She can retain things she learns from a dvd, where she sees and hears things, but if she is drawing a picture (visual + working with her hands), she finds it hard to listen to what I’m reading.amcampbell4Participant
Thanks for all the great suggestions! I will try some of them and see how things go.
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