Wearing a Watch, too much subject review in class

Both kids have watches. M wears hers on and off, mostly for fun. G did not like to wear his much until yesterday. I saw him started to wearing it to school. My initial thought is that other kids have watches and he wanted to bring his. But when I asked him casually this morning, he told me why: When he sits in groups in class, where they do reviews, he finishes early and gets bored. He couldn't see the clock from where they are, so he wants to know the time.

I have heard from one other parents that they spent a lot of time at the start of the year doing review work in Math. I am not sure I am happy with this. But G also said he is learning new things in Science. And we have a curriculum night tonight so I can find out more about the curriculum at this new School. Lastly, I am running the Family Math night and hoping to start a Math club with a few very enthusiastic parents to enrich their learning outside of the regular classroom. Stay tuned.

Thinking Out Loud, Learning about Learning

For the last few months, M has been "thinking out loud". She would explain her thinking on many different topics to me as it happens. For example, we were watching Modern Family (yes it is marginally child friendly) and she would tell me what she think why a character in the show is doing certain things. This is not limited just to empathic situation. She does this for all topics -- how some mechanical device works, for example. This is important for me because it gives me a glimpse into her learning and reasoning process. By listen to her narration, and help her adjust her thinking, I can teach her learning and reasoning. A key 21st century skill is learning to learn, and we now have a natural platform for me to do this with M. I am very glad.

To summarize -- it is much less important for me to "correct" her conclusions. If her mental model of how the toaster pop up the toast is wrong, well maybe she has just invented a better way! It is important to monitor how she reason, and both learn from her and help her develop her learning skills.

I wonder if we can explicitly encourage this narrative behavior in families, or in school?