Thursday, October 08, 2009


The Internet wasn't working last night & Jessica came over to watch Grey Gardens (two thumbs up!). So, Morocco tomorrow.

I'm constantly struggling with how best to support Ella with her school work. Montessori doesn't give homework for lower elementary students & at times, I feel a bit disconnected to her academic experiences. Costco currently has lots of workbooks for all ages & because she enjoys that sort of thing, I picked up the first grade book. Occasionally, she'll do a few pages as we get dinner ready or after the twins go to sleep. She loves doing math & asks me to create worksheets for her. We have math flashcards & money/time cards she often chooses as her post-twin-bedtime activity. However, I met with her teachers recently & they said not to push the workbook type stuff too much so whether or not we work on those projects is entirely up to Ella.
The teachers did say we should be letting Ella read to us at least 10 minutes a day which has been difficult to convince Ella to do. She's typically reluctant to read to me. I bought a Junie B book to try to entice her to read. She thinks it is hilarious, but after only a few pages into the book, she stalled. My sister & I spent hours reading as kids. Nick, on the other hand, rarely read. His reading for fun only picked up in the last year as he has been reading for school. I really want our kids to pick up that love of reading early in life. I had two "Aha" moments last week. I stopped by the library before I picked up the kids. Because I had promised to take the kids with me, I quickly grabbed two picture books & a book for Ella & put a book in each carseat as a surprise. Without any prompting from me, Ella started reading the picture books to the twins as we drove.
Much to my delight, this has continued. I get to hear how she is reading (I am very proud of her) without her realizing we are having reading time. Plus, the twins are happy. Win. Win.
We are working through this list of preschool books & will scour Amazon for other suggestions. They love anything by Komako Sakai & all the Little Critter books.
The other "trick" I found to get in some reading time was doing a google search for "elementary reading games." We do crossword puzzles, story creations (remember Mad Libs?), word searches, etc. on the computer & she loves it.
The other night, I finished bath time & got everyone bundled in warm PJ's. I was cleaning up the kitchen & heard Nick talking to the twins & assumed he was putting them to bed. About 20 minutes later, Ella emerged from the twins room & announced that Greta wanted a drink of water. She had read them books & put them to bed by herself. Did I mention that the twins have only been in toddler beds for about a week? I was very impressed. She was hired on the spot.

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