Sunday, February 21, 2010

Planet Earth

Feb14_ChinaShipping It was our first week of trying a country hop in our geography track. In the interest of “keeping it real” I will be the first to admit that it didn’t go over as well as I hoped. I am still trying to analyze what exactly didn’t work, but I can definitely see a pattern based on my previous experiences – the more I prepare and the more I plan – the less successful we are. Somehow I couldn’t “sell” Anna theFeb15_NB_AnnaPortrait idea that it would be great to learn more about China. It’s not that she resisted the books and toys and games, but I felt that she didn’t “connect”. She didn’t play a lot of her own games incorporating something of what she learned and she didn’t ask a lot of questions. I am thinking that I was trying to cram too much into her, and my daughter always takes time to warm up to something new. Also it seems that one missing component was TV or computer. I might not like it, but Anna learns a lot from TV and seems to mull the content of what she sees a lot more and a lot longer in her mind than she does for most books. I still don’t want to make TV a major part of our days, but I will be looking for something to extend our book learning in the future.

Anyway, I think we are going to wrap up our China adventure this week and head over to Germany. I am hoping that daughter will be more interested. After all, she is a German citizen, and it’s the only foreign country she has visited so far. I had a lot of plans, but I am really going to keep it simple and focus on German fairy tales. Cinderella, here we come.

For more geography and history, visit Postcard Exchange/Geography at Children Grow, Children Explore, Children Learn.


An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

It's amazing the things children pick up when they don't see to be learning anything. You might be surprised later, at what Anna knows about China.

I can't wait to see what you do with Germany!

Debbie said...

Sorry this didn't go as well as you had hoped. I agree with Leah that Anna might have picked up more then you think. Selena will do that to me to only come back later down the road and announce a lot of what she seemed disinterested in.

Christy said...

I have learned this lesson. My husband was upset that I didn't teach the kids more about the Alamo -- I had to explain to him that at 5 yrs and almost 4 yrs of age, I can only expect so much from them. They love trying foods from different states, learning about animals from the states, and doing fun projects that somehow relate, but I am not successful at trying to cram anything in to our lessons.

Kim said...

I agree that she probably learned more than she's letting you know. It has to marinate. Also, I find that it's best to teach Crumpet just a few quick facts at a time, and he stays interested. After you make a routine of country hopping, she may get the idea and become more involved too. Not really understanding that there are many countries and they are all different may be complicating things.

Ticia said...

I thought Cinderella was French?

With my kids for the different continents were just focusing on animals, but since she's not a big animal fan, maybe food? She might like that more. And fairy tales are always a hit.

That reminds me I want to find that 80 tales book you featured yesterday.

min said...

I believe exposure is the key at this age. I read a book called Martin's Big Words but didn't get much reaction from JC. Then, a month later, JC recognized the book at the bookstore and said, "Mommy! That's Dr. Martin Luther King!" Kids will surprise you when you least expect it!

It does help to connect something she already knows and loves to something new. If she loves Cinderllas, then doing Cinderellas around the world might be fun! If you read enough variations, she'll start to make connections of the similarities! It's wonderful to see.

Looking forward to reading about your unit on Germany!

vanessa said...

Can't wait to read about the fairy tales!
Sometimes kids aren't interested. That's okay! Don't worry about it one bit!