Monday, February 1, 2010

The Teacher Gene

I can start from point A and reach point B in explaining something to someone. My daughter says I have the teacher gene. I don't know about that but I do understand to start at baseline and move forward when teaching something new to someone. I have to gather the steps in my head and then proceed slowly and check frequently to make sure the student is getting "it". I can usually watch some one's face and eyes and see the recognition light them up when they get "it".
I am at a loss here on the teaching project. How do you teach one to read? Carrie knows her alphabet. How do I get her to understand the concept of putting the letters together to form words. Is it just a matter of repetition? She can recognize her own name and write her name by putting all the letters together. We practice the large letters and the small letters and now she can recognize the difference. Is it a matter of memorization? She knows we are forming words but does she understand that the forming of words will lead her into reading? She will sit and pretend to read; she will ask me to read the instructions on the Wii game she is playing so she knows what being able to read means. I'm stumped. I'm going to make a visit to the Elem. Ed teacher across the street who is retired. Maybe she can give me a few tips and maybe she will tell me that it is memorizing and I can continue on this path. I'll get back to you on what I discover.
Ah education. Can it be too overrated at this time in our history? I've heard it said "a college degree costs more now and is worth less". Soon the only people with a job will be those with a degree working at Burger King. A scary thought I will admit but still I would like for Carrie to learn to read and I think she would like that too. To this end, Carrie and I have been practicing our alphabet. We are learning the difference between the "capital letters" and the "baby letters".
They do look quite different to a 4 yr old. We get our book and pencils and sit at the coffee table and have our school time. She raises her hand when she wants to speak, something that can't be learned to early. We practice not talking in class unless given permission. We are doing wonderfully and she can write her name and recognize it when she sees it. So far so good but how do I teach her to read and write. Is it all about memorization? Do I teach two letter words to start this? Why don't I know this? I need a teacher friend and one that teaches kindergarten or preschool. The neighbor across the street is a retired primary school teacher. I'm going to make a trip to visit her with a list of questions and hopefully I can get some tips on helping Carrie with her education.
Speaking of education or the lack of it, I now look like those poor toothless people of Appalachia. You know; the ones you see in a movie about mountain people? The ones living far back in the hollows, coveralls, unkempt hair and a few teeth missing from the fronts of their mouths? (cue the music from Deliverance) Well, I lost the temporary crown last night and it's right in the front part of my mouth. It's the incisor tooth or what used to be a incisor tooth before I had to have it extracted and an implant placed with a temporary crown. The temporary crown has to be in place for 4 months to allow the spike that was implanted to heal in the bone. I didn't expect the temporary to stay in place the whole 4 months and for the past few days it has been loose so it wasn't unexpected that I would have it fall out.
I don't think being toothless has anything to do with the lack of an education except for the fact that dental visits are expensive and the better job you have the better dental care you can afford. Dental care is moved down the list of needs when money is scarce. People don't go unless they are in pain which leads to caries and tooth loss. This morning I will make a visit to the dentist to replace the "tooth" and hope it will last for another month. I may have to repeat these visits for the next 3 months until the permanent one is placed.
I have two goals today. I'll visit the dentist at 9AM then visit the teacher across the street a little later today. I'm on my way to the shower and to get dressed in some warm clothing. Yep, it's cold here, at least by our standards.

1 comment:

  1. ah...Carrie is now in the second grade..and when she was in kindergarten, I learned the secret to putting words together. Popcorn words..those connectors in a sentence and she has learned well. She is ahead of everybody in her class in reading! I'm thrilled!


Comments are moderated to prevent spam posters. Leave a comment! It's nice to know you visited!