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    #54324 09/02/09 05:21 PM
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    Wren Offline OP
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    I was singing DD to sleep, thinking about "your baby can read". And I started thinking about all the things you are suppose to do to increase IQ, like breastfeeding, music lessons, exercise, etc. etc. I know there are thoughts about hot housing, but maybe doing these exercises -- your baby can read program -- does push the brain development and creates a higher IQ for the child.

    I was having a turtle and hare discussion with DD the other day -- outshoot of rough piano practice. You get someone like Hiliary Clinton who wokes extraordinarily hard, IQ estimate around 125. And you get someone with IQ 150 who doesn't do the work, just slides through. Clinton comes off as more intelligent. Maybe not cleverer. But more intelligent.

    I kind of lost the point here. But is hot housing so bad? If my kid was 125 and I still wanted them to have every option available, wouldn't I want them to push themselves. The quote was made about Joe Kennedy to Teddy, re: sailboat race. "They may be better and smarter, but we will work harder and beat them."

    DD learned to ride a two wheeler this week. A result that she didn't want to ride her bike because she was bored. She really lacked confidence when we started and didn't push herself and I got frustrated with her giving up but I didn't. I made her do some everyday. She got farther and farther and today, she was doing it all her own. She was so pleased with herself and happy and kept saying "I can do it, I can do it." I am happy she is so smart but I am realizing that her IQ isn't going to carry her. She needs the life lessons of perseverance more than anything else. Too much does come easily. That is more of a problem than I thought.

    Ren

    Wren #54330 09/02/09 05:44 PM
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    Ren- I think I get what you are saying (and agree) but I perhaps use different words to describe it. Maybe I'm wrong but I think there is a big difference between stimulating and hothousing.

    I believe that everyone should be encouraged to work hard at things they find challenging so that they learn the fabulous rewards associated with working to achieve something.

    I believe that some things need to be forced by parents even if children are resistant aka parent-driven; this includes building work ethic (as above), eating a balanced diet, basic hygiene, age-appropriate academic study, age/ability-appropriate motor skill development . . .

    I also believe that children (at all ability levels) should be provided with every resource possible for them to delve into the things they are most passionate about. Feed that passion!! This passion, which is outside of requirements, should be child-driven.

    I think hothousing is parent-driven where providing stimulation is child-driven (but parent-fueled??). I see hothousing as the parents forcing their child to do something above expectations for the sake of being better than others. Stimulation is giving your child every book in the library on George Washington because he's a history buff (child-driven).

    Does that align with your thoughts?

    My DH and his brother are both PG but have very different levels of ambition and work ethic. It is always interesting ´┐Żto watch from the outside´┐Ż to see their life paths unfold because of this.

    Last edited by sittin pretty; 09/02/09 05:48 PM. Reason: Clarification

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    I just heard about a study by a psych out of Berkeley on NPR today. She talked about babies and young kids being "lanterns" of learning. They see everything but don't focus well. OTOH, adults are spotlights: better able to focus, but that means excluding a lot from notice. She suggested that instead of saying that kids aren't good at paying attention, we should say they can't NOT pay attention! That made a lot of sense to me.

    I think this sort of program ignores the way most babies and young kids learn. That's what is wrong with it. It's not about hothousing per se. It's about bad pedagogy.

    IMHO...


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    Originally Posted by Kriston
    I just heard about a study by a psych out of Berkeley on NPR today. She talked about babies and young kids being "lanterns" of learning. They see everything but don't focus well. OTOH, adults are spotlights: better able to focus, but that means excluding a lot from notice. She suggested that instead of saying that kids aren't good at paying attention, we should say they can't NOT pay attention! That made a lot of sense to me.


    I've heard something similar but I love the way that was phrased!

    On the actual Your Baby Can Read -I've seen it but don't really know enough about it to form any kind of opinion. I have a four year old watching the History Channel right now so I probably should keep my mouth shut either way. smile


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    Here's what I think: It is one thing to want your child to be healthy enough to be able to achieve at his or her highest possible level (which is where breastfeeding, a healthy diet, an environment free from lead, etc., etc., come in), and it is another thing entirely to want to push that child to achieve beyond what that child would naturally be able to do. I think the latter is what people call "hothousing" and it is neither healthy nor beneficial. It might result in a few increased points on a test here and there, and it might result in a hard-working, driven person. But the trade-off is in the child's autonomy and mental health.

    And honestly, though there may be value in high intelligence, there is more value in being a happy, well-balanced person. I have no desire for my child to turn into Hillary Clinton. If she is happy with a job in a blue-collar field, that will be fine by me. If she wants to work hard and compete with other hard-working, extremely intelligent people in a mentally challenging field, that's fine too. I think it is more my job to keep her healthy (and keep her childhood relatively stress-free) than to make that decision for her.

    ETA: Not to say that all blue-collar work is not mentally challenging, or that all white-collar work is. blush I don't think that at all, but I can't think of a better way to phrase it.

    Last edited by no5no5; 09/02/09 07:43 PM.
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    I definitely push my kids occasionally. I feel that they need it so they can learn that their boundaries may be farther out than they realized. I also think it's essential that they be forced to puzzle something out at times. My opinion is that when learning comes very easily for too long, the child is at risk for not learning how to challenge himself.

    People for whom learning isn't so easy have an advantage in this regard, because working hard to get something is more familiar to them. Our school system isn't set up to teach gifted kids how to...well, struggle. There's a lot to be said for internalizing the idea that "This looks impossible right now, but if I keep trying, I'll get it."

    Val

    Val #54350 09/02/09 09:32 PM
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    There's a difference between a healthy stretch that takes into account the child's needs, and a push that is utterly inappropriate to a child's learning needs. Two different things altogether.


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    But, as sittin pretty put it, her DH and his brother are both PG but very different in terms of ambition. What if your kid doesn't have the passion? Or not consistently?

    One day, DD asked me why we didn't start her piano lessons at 3. But having her practice is not fun. She really wanted the lessons and we told her that if we started, we would keep going. She is not Mark Yu practicing 8 hours a day. And she loves to be able to play the pieces, especially as they increase in difficulty. But there is no passion in wanting to practice. And I do not expect her to become a concert musician. DD is resistent to the challenge, by nature, except physically when she sees another kid can do something.

    And this isn't about blue collar work or white collar work. I actually do not believe there will be any decent blue collar work by the time DD is employable and white collar work will be very competitive to get. Hence, my belief in the downward spiral of the US as nation of opportunity makes me want to teach DD the best work habits. So that she can provide for herself and provide for a lifestyle that she wants to live. Somehow I do not think it will be that downscaled.

    Ren

    Wren #54361 09/03/09 04:37 AM
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    This Baby Reading ad. just scares me. Reading is one thing, learning some sight words quite another. MY DS8 was a very early reader (2 1/2), but that was because he was obsessed with books the way my other kids were with trains and animals. He would constantly be bringing books to me (it would drive me nuts a lot of the time) and 'demand' to be read to. He just loved the stories and jokes etc. and started figuring out words for himself.
    Now I do believe reading is sometimes left too late. Just like foreign languages, some things can be left too late to be absorbed easily, but sticking a bunch of sight words in front of a baby is not what a baby needs.

    lulu #54363 09/03/09 05:23 AM
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    See, I guess to me it is also important that kids learn to work hard and overcome challenges. But the idea that forcing them to work hard will teach them to work hard is sort of like the idea that forcing them to eat broccoli will teach them to like broccoli. I think if you offer broccoli regularly, and model enjoying it yourself, your kid will eventually like it. Or, if not broccoli, another healthy substitute. Whereas if you force them to eat it, they may learn to eat it, but they will never enjoy it and, worse, they will not learn to listen to what their body tells them about what to eat & when, because they've been forced to ignore that inner voice.

    So I will offer DD plenty of challenging tasks, and let her decide how hard to push herself. So far (and she is only 3), she chooses to push herself. She has accomplished even more than I would have dared to try to push her into, if indeed I was that sort of parent.

    That said, I think perhaps for older gifted kids who have had years of inappropriate schooling, a bit of a push might be a good thing. It is hard to overcome bad habits once they are ingrained. But I just don't think a prophylactic push is at all necessary. smile

    Wren #54366 09/03/09 05:42 AM
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    Hi Ren - As to the motivation/ambition of one GT person versus another, I'm not sure we as parents can have complete control over that. I think you see this many times in siblings, who are nurtured the same way and given the same opportunities. I think a lot of it has to do with the child's personality. Because you are more aware of some of the common pitfalls (lack of challenge in school, etc.), you can do something to try to avoid/prevent your child's future lack of ambition, and to try to find and encourage something that your child does have a passion for. But really there's only so much you can do, and I think it can be tricky to find the balance (what is pushing too hard? will there be repercussions/backlash?). And I think, with rare exceptions, most of us will have to wait until our children are a little older before we discover what they are passionate about.

    As to the hot-housing versus giving your child opportunities issue, I often find myself reading things about hot-housing and saying, "Huh. Well I guess I did do alphabet flashcards with DS, and I did get him educational software before preschool." The difference is that DS wanted these things, or I got them because I knew he would like them. And he did! A more recent example: DS5 tried the Timez Attack free version (multiplication software) and begged me to get the full version. I told him I didn't have the money for that, so he paid for it with his own money.

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    I understand a lot of what people are saying. But I have to disagree with some of it.

    Like forcing vegetables. If I do not force DD to have fruit (and I have to blend it every morning or it doesn't get consumed) and eat her vegetables, she would just eat carbs. And she has bowel problems. It isn't an option not to force her. Not about to start giving her a laxative a day because she hates fruits and vegetables. So using this analogy... she has to be forced into healthy habits because of health concerns for her. She really has issues with the bowel.

    So, staying with my devil's advocate role, how different is that for someone whose child is HG, even PG and doesn't have learning passion? What would you do, just let them slide?

    DD was motivated to learn to read by herself at 2.5 and did math early. She was motivated in her Montessori preschool to do the math area when she got there. By the second year there, she got bored and just played.

    But her lack of trying comes mostly from fear of failure. She hates to fail. We have been steady in praising efforts, not success. Though you have to praise success also, but try and show how all the practice paid off. That is our mantra. The practice is what created the success. She really hates not being able to do something and gets frustrated when it doesn't come easily. And hates, really hates when we try and show her a better way.

    Though she gets into the class situation. She became an excellent swimmer this summer. She had a fabulous teacher and since we are on the ocean all summer, we really wanted to make sure she was as good in deep water. She way surpassed our expectations, diving off the block and swimming the length of the pool. At 41 inches and 34 lbs, that was a feat of energy. And sometimes a big wave takes her and she is OK with swimming with it, then coming up and swimming to one of us -- we are always near her. So sometimes she pushes herself beyond anything we thought and then....

    Wren #54372 09/03/09 06:50 AM
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    Originally Posted by Wren
    Like forcing vegetables. If I do not force DD to have fruit (and I have to blend it every morning or it doesn't get consumed) and eat her vegetables, she would just eat carbs. And she has bowel problems. It isn't an option not to force her. Not about to start giving her a laxative a day because she hates fruits and vegetables. So using this analogy... she has to be forced into healthy habits because of health concerns for her. She really has issues with the bowel.


    I guess I should start by saying that I am only talking about my own experience, and I am not trying to say that my experience is the same as everyone's. But IME, when DD gets constipated, we talk about choices she could make in the future to prevent that from happening again, and she does adjust her diet. Also, we don't eat a lot of processed foods, so even when she is eating carbs, they are all whole grains, etc. So for us, anyway, fostering a love of healthy food is more important than the specific foods DD eats right now.

    But I have never tried to force DD to eat vegetables, and now, she loves them. Sure, we went through periods when she wouldn't eat any. And for almost every vegetable we've introduced, she began by disliking it. But she tries them again, of her own volition, and learns to like them. Some days she wakes up and asks for green beans for breakfast. And I can't picture her doing that if we had tried to force her in the first place. So I guess it's a bit of a chicken/egg problem: You have to force your kid to eat vegetables because she doesn't like them, and she doesn't like them (at least in part) because you force them.

    I think children who have been forced/pushed too hard in one particular direction may end up enjoying it less than kids who were allowed to explore and decide for themselves.

    Wren #54373 09/03/09 06:54 AM
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    Encouragement and hothousing are two different things, and from what I understand encouragement (which may be mistaken for hothousing in PG children is what you really mean). To me the analogy with vegetables doesn't help much. Unlike stomachs that usually accept a vegetable once it has been forced down, a personality can reject 'forced drive'. OTOH, the fact that you 'blend' the veg, says that you are not out-and-out overtly forcing a child to eat a certain vegetable in a certain way, but instead you are trying to make it palatable to the child. Using your analogy, making drive 'more palatable', which I expect you are trying to do, would be a different way of looking at this.

    Wren #54374 09/03/09 06:57 AM
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    Originally Posted by Wren
    I understand a lot of what people are saying. But I have to disagree with some of it.

    Like forcing vegetables. If I do not force DD to have fruit (and I have to blend it every morning or it doesn't get consumed) and eat her vegetables, she would just eat carbs. And she has bowel problems. It isn't an option not to force her. Not about to start giving her a laxative a day because she hates fruits and vegetables. So using this analogy... she has to be forced into healthy habits because of health concerns for her. She really has issues with the bowel.

    So, staying with my devil's advocate role, how different is that for someone whose child is HG, even PG and doesn't have learning passion? What would you do, just let them slide?


    And hates, really hates when we try and show her a better way.

    Well...I feel that if a child doesn't appear to have a learning passion, it could just mean they haven't found it yet or they aren't fond of the methods used to teach it.

    And in my humble opinion, early reading does not make or break the gifted child. However, forced learning can.

    There's plenty of ways to incorporate learning into fun ways. Hands-on activities are much better for some kids. Plenty of learning going on with science experiments, nature study, playing math games, new vocabulary words and concepts are picked up through exploring math and science. You just can't read about them and get the same experience as working with experiments, or using geoboards or pattern blocks or playing other math games simply for fun.

    It sounds like your dd likes to sample different things, new experiences, but when the novelty wears off, she becomes disinterested. Or, if she at all senses disappointment that she isn't sticking with something, she could be picking up subtle hints even if you are praising her efforts.

    If she really hates when you try to show her a better way, it's probably because she senses you might not trust her to figure it out.

    I would give her a little control over the situation (whatever that is) and not jump in to trying to show her a better way (not saying that you do, but just in case). Rather than say, "here, let me show you how"...maybe you can say, "It seems to be frustrating you. You could either keep trying, or you can ask me for help, or you can take a break for a while and try it another time".



    Last edited by Sciencemama; 09/03/09 07:00 AM.
    Wren #54378 09/03/09 08:15 AM
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    Originally Posted by Wren
    I actually do not believe there will be any decent blue collar work by the time DD is employable and white collar work will be very competitive to get.

    Ren

    A friend makes metal home items like stairs, kitchen remodels, etc. He is busier than ever. He blends art with blue-collar production and is busier than ever.

    Our plumber makes six figures with four employees. He is always in demand.

    Our mechanic has all the latest gizmos and ten employees. He makes very good money and his little girl easily got into the top private school in Dallas. He knows a lot about everything and is one of the most interesting people to talk to.

    One of my wife's friends owns a machine shop with over 100 employees - they make all kinds of things from metals and plastics. He does most of the design work as well. He can make anything.

    Another man owns his own high-end welding business. He makes specialized 3-d robotic welding and cutting systems. He also troubleshoots other kinds of machines at $200 an hour.

    Most kids with a good grasp of math can go into the US Army, get their A&P license, and then get out, and make close to six figures doing aircraft maintenance once they have 10 years of commercial experience.

    Small business is the refuge of the highly gifted who need to make their own path in the world. Much of it is blue-collar.

    If you consider the actual mechanics, Surgeons are blue-collar workers.

    I can go on. But I made my point.




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    First. I don't think DD really will go into the armed forces. I wouldn't want her to, she is my only child. And considering her princess obsession, I don't see her doing any kind of carpentry or mechanical labor job.

    All those 100K paying jobs were more "grease monkey" rather than office jobs. Which is great for someone mechanical. Not DD. And I said when DD grows up. She is now 4. The changes in manufacturing robotics and computer productivity has been so dramatic over 20 years.

    Second, she does love experiences, science experiments. So I don't want anyone to think we are keeping her locked in a room. I am being devil's advocate here. Discussing this theorectally.

    Third. I am not going to let DD eat carbs -- and they are wholegrain, organic etc. and then sit screaming on the toilet or let her soil underwear because it starts shooting out and then say, see what happens when you don't eat your fruit and vegetables. What kind of advice is that? If she had diabetes and chose to eat sugar would you wait until she was in convulsions and say, see what happens when you eat candy?

    Fourth, when I posted a while back about music lessons and others posted about practicing being an issue and "forcing" their kids to practice you don't post here to back me up.

    Because that is where the real issue is. And how many of parents out there have to "force" kids to do homework. Apparently none who responded.

    Ren

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    Originally Posted by Austin
    Originally Posted by Wren
    I actually do not believe there will be any decent blue collar work by the time DD is employable and white collar work will be very competitive to get.
    Small business is the refuge of the highly gifted who need to make their own path in the world. Much of it is blue-collar.

    If you consider the actual mechanics, Surgeons are blue-collar workers.

    I can go on. But I made my point.

    And made it well.

    I've been self-employed since leaving my mall-job @ 18. Although I've done much "white-collar" work, I've been equally rewarded by my blue-collar endeavors.

    After having seeing soooo many clients successful in the plumbing field over the years, I've been sorely tempted to learn a new trade...


    Being offended is a natural consequence of leaving the house. - Fran Lebowitz
    Wren #54385 09/03/09 09:10 AM
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    We do have plenty of issues with piano practice, and yes, I make DS5 do it anyway. I think it is great for showing a perfectionistic kid, for whom everything else comes easily, that it takes time to learn some things. And it also is a great tool to make sure your child knows that there are some things they need to do that they might not want to.

    We have food allergies here, so I can relate to the food issues. We do have to make sure DS5 gets enough calcium and such, and we had many struggles with getting him to eat certain things. We do the best we can while keeping him healthy, but we don't give him the choice to completely avoid things he doesn't like.

    [FYI - to all you who think plumbers have it made. The shop owners do well, the day-to-day worker bees are lower to middle class in my area. I know because my dad was a plumber and all his relatives are/were as well.]

    Last edited by st pauli girl; 09/03/09 09:12 AM.
    Wren #54387 09/03/09 09:25 AM
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    Originally Posted by Wren
    I am not going to let DD eat carbs [...] and then say, see what happens when you don't eat your fruit and vegetables. What kind of advice is that?
    In our house, we call that an "object lesson." Or in today's political parlance, a "teachable moment."

    You can tell a kid a thousand times, "Don't touch the stove -- it's hot." But they will never, EVER get it until they touch the danged stove. I let our son touch the stove when he was little, and although it didn't melt off any skin, he sure as heck doesn't touch the stove any more.

    Originally Posted by Wren
    If she had diabetes and chose to eat sugar would you wait until she was in convulsions and say, see what happens when you eat candy?
    C'mon, now. I wouldn't let our kid eat PB either, if it would send him into anaphyl-whatever shock. That's just plain nuts and I don't think it's reasonably analogous.

    Originally Posted by Wren
    And how many of parents out there have to "force" kids to do homework.
    "Forced" to do it at the point of a rubber-band-gun, no less. Only because the object lesson involved can take a little while to materialize. I do, however, let sloppy work get through so he can get the immediate teacher feedback in the form of an "F" for turning in illegible work, despite having all correct answers. He only got one of those and is much more mindful of his "neatness" and when I do have to "suggest" that he rewrite something for clarity, he doesn't pitch a fit like he used to.

    I'm not one for wrapping everything in cotton balls. My wife & I went round & round about the blasted pads on all the sharp corners, or always trying to prevent the myriad of cuts & scrapes. Grrrr.

    If the object lesson will be readily apparent and not threatening to life, limb or eyeball -- nothing teaches like experience.



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    Quote
    I actually do not believe there will be any decent blue collar work
    Ouch
    blush I think blue collar men at HOT!, so I married one, and we started our own small business.

    Quote
    You can tell a kid a thousand times, "Don't touch the stove -- it's hot." But they will never, EVER get it until they touch the danged stove.
    My DS had to touch the stove twice just to prove it did not hurt him and he was too stuburn to cry smirk
    "If your going to be dumb, you got to be tough"

    Quote
    "Forced" to do it at the point of a rubber-band-gun, no less.
    grin

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    The initial premise seems to assume that kids are flawed in the way they learn or in their motivation if we don't direct it or fix their learning. I don't by that premise.

    Because parents don't buy Teach Your Baby to Read or sit down and give kids formal lessons, doesn't mean toddlers and preschoolers aren't learning hard work or perseverance. In fact the formalized parent directed learning may actually kill that joy in learning and the self awareness of what works for that individual.

    Wren #54402 09/03/09 11:52 AM
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    Originally Posted by Wren
    Third. I am not going to let DD eat carbs -- and they are wholegrain, organic etc. and then sit screaming on the toilet or let her soil underwear because it starts shooting out and then say, see what happens when you don't eat your fruit and vegetables. What kind of advice is that? If she had diabetes and chose to eat sugar would you wait until she was in convulsions and say, see what happens when you eat candy?


    My DD also has had issues with constipation, and I handled it by explaining that she needs to eat more fiber and drink more water, and she has changed her diet as a result. Yes, I would prefer that she experiences horrible constipation once (or even a few times) and learn from it, than be force-fed healthy food until she is too old to be forced (at which time I presume that she'd start eating ice cream for breakfast). Obviously if you are talking about a medical condition with more serious repercussions, the answer would be different.

    It seems to me that you have a very particular vision of the future you want for your child...and I think that's a dangerous thing. When I think of what I want for my DD, all it is is her happiness (okay, okay, and a grandchild someday). I think my job is simply to make sure she has a happy, safe, and full childhood, not to make sure she is able to have any particular career (or type of career). The latter is her own decision and her own responsibility.

    Besides which, I think we are all working off of a very likely flawed assumption; that being, that we can decide these things for our children. Does anyone here really believe that a program like Your Baby Can Read can have a significant effect on a child's future opportunities? Really? Honestly? I am sure I could force my DD to stop skipping 16 when she counts if I wanted to drill her, but I can't imagine that it could possibly have any positive effect on her potential. It would, however, surely impact our relationship and her happiness and free time.

    Dandy #54416 09/03/09 02:16 PM
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    Not enough parents think as you do, Dandy. A little "failure" goes a long way!


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    OK, I was interested to see how the"Your Baby Can Read" program looked like. Well, you can watch some of it from youtube and it looked really boring to me. To prove it I took my 26mo old DD and sat her in my lap to watch one of the clips. After 1min she started asking for anything else. She usually has no problem concentrating LOL

    At least for us that program would not work, as she would be begging for something more interesting to watch.

    oli #54422 09/03/09 03:22 PM
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    I guess I really don't see the point of trying to "give the child an edge" as an infant or a child.

    I think, if a child ASKS for specific things like wanting to take ballet, or music lessons, or go to science camp (like my dd7 did), it's good to support that interest.

    I have a pretty enriched environment at home, but never had the desire to teach reading early. I had one that went from not reading before kindy to reading 6th grade material in the span of 2 years. I have one daughter that self-taught to read at 4.5. She's reading easy chapter books (Magic Treehouse) and she's almost 6 now.

    I don't see the point in sitting down teaching a baby to read when I think kids who are really interested and really ready will catch on and quickly advance.

    Kids need time to be kids. There will be opportunities when they are older to be tailored for the job market, I kind of think it's a waste of my headspace to worry about what my almost 6 year old will do for a career when she's 20. I want to enjoy her being a child as long as she can.

    There's a lot to be said about being able to just play in terms of creative thinking/creative problem solving (a skill in high demand in many careers).

    Here's some food for thought

    NPR articles:

    Old Fashioned Play Builds Serious Skills


    Creative Play Makes for Kids in Control

    From a homeschooling archive
    Much Too Early

    Okay, I have to modify the portion below. I don't know if this group is the same as Your Baby Can Read...but if not it is seems similar to the Doman techniques.

    The author of Teach Your baby to read, G. Doman, has been under a LOT of criticism over the years, taking peoples money for his "proven" techniques.
    Rush Little Baby

    His original studies were regarding brain damaged children, and his techniques have been criticized for the use with brain damaged children by the AAP

    See Wikipedia Article

    The Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential


    Go ahead, spend money on ridiculous scams to give your baby an edge, but it's not proven to be beneficial over the long term.

    Last edited by Sciencemama; 09/03/09 04:04 PM.
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    Thank you Sciencemama.


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    [quote=no5no5 It seems to me that you have a very particular vision of the future you want for your child...and I think that's a dangerous thing. When I think of what I want for my DD, all it is is her happiness (okay, okay, and a grandchild someday). I think my job is simply to make sure she has a happy, safe, and full childhood, not to make sure she is able to have any particular career (or type of career). The latter is her own decision and her own responsibility.

    Besides which, I think we are all working off of a very likely flawed assumption; that being, that we can
    decide these things for our children. Does anyone here really believe that a program like Your Baby Can Read can have a significant effect on a child's future opportunities? Really? Honestly? I am sure I could force my DD to stop skipping 16 when she counts if I wanted to drill her, but I can't imagine that it could possibly have any positive effect on her potential. It would, however, surely impact our relationship and her happiness and free time. [/quote]


    Well, I've bobbled the quote function somehow, but with luck, you will have mercy on my technical limitations, which are manifold, not to mention manifest!

    no5no5 makes very good points, which also speak to something I have been pondering vis-a-vis the "motivation" thread: that which motivates the truly free individual, versus that which motivates those who are in some way not free. I don't think I can articulate very clearly yet those things I have been contemplating, but it seems to me that those motivating factors would be very different (i.e something like love, altruism, hope, pride in work well done, perhaps, versus fear, shame, anger, "Stockholm syndrome"...???) One tends to think in this context of the many sad posts here where a child has basically shut down in the face of inflexibility on the part of a teacher/principal/school about giving work of an appropriate level; it's essentially a response coming from a place of lack of freedom.

    I am reminded of some experiments a colleague and I tried in various classes we taught: we offered our (university) students several choices of means of evaluation (exams versus projects, assigned topics versus self-chosen ones, essays versus presentations, etc.). It was exponentially more difficult to grade (and didn't lend itself to every course we taught), but we both found it so well worth it, because the students who had choices about what kind of work to do did better and more interesting work, and told us that they got a great deal more out of their courses when they were evaluated in this way.

    All of which is probably a propos of nothing, so thank you for putting up with my musings....

    peace
    minnie

    Dandy #54477 09/04/09 02:18 AM
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    After having DD4 fall backwards, after sitting crosslegged on the picnic table, head first onto concrete on Tuesday, I think object lessons are really relative. Yes, it was a scarey 24 hours. I got ice immediately and we headed to the ER.

    I don't want DD experimenting with drugs or a friend with benefit. There are things I cannot control when she will be 14. But she is 4. So why is not letting your child eat PB different than forcing my child to eat the fruits and vegetables when her problem is with her bowels. Your allergy is more of an exception than her physical problem?

    I understand what many of you are saying. But this discussion is not going to be determined by this post. Only in years time. What was a good parenting decision. Though I still don't see DD becoming a tradesperson. She is too much like me, rushing jobs by hand. No perfectionism there. And her clothing budget would exceed the trade salary, that I am certain. She channels her grandmother there. And I had my decades in that realm. Hence, why I went to Wall Street. Had to support the habit.

    Ren

    Wren #54479 09/04/09 03:23 AM
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    Trying to influence where your child will end up when they hit the employment world? I'm 44 now and still haven't figured out what I want to do when I grow up. By now I should probably have taken responsibility for my own choices but... At nineteen I tested 152 on an IQ exam for entry to the Army, that was after 13 schools and swapping through 3 different exam systems, I finally gained the results I needed to get to Uni only to find out I couldn't get a grant and with little to no parental guidance on where to go next decided to join the Army and go to Uni later. 12 years service, 2 husbands and a very late baby life kinda took over and here I am, still undecided. Would things have been different if my parents had taken an active role in my education instead of just being content that with shifting school every few years I still managed to come top of the class... probably/possibly... who knows. Do I feel like I failed to reach my potential? sometimes, but at the end of the day my decisions were my decisions, and for all I know my parents really thought I was doing great and they had nothing to worry about.

    I think its great that we as parents are probably so much more enlightened about our kids and have the opportunity to perhaps 'guide' them towards their star - but bottom line is if DS chooses to smell the flowers rather than reach for the stars, then I for one will smile wryly and be there to support him.

    spook #54516 09/04/09 09:51 AM
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    Quote
    Trying to influence where your child will end up when they hit the employment world?
    ...but it sure is fun to guess!
    I have my money on my DS3 either becoming a lawyer....or a professional bull rider whistle

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    Originally Posted by Floridama
    Quote
    Trying to influence where your child will end up when they hit the employment world?
    ...but it sure is fun to guess!
    I have my money on my DS3 either becoming a lawyer....or a professional bull rider whistle

    LOL. I pegged DD as a future kickboxer when she was in utero, and I still think that's a viable option. wink

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    Originally Posted by Floridama
    Quote
    Trying to influence where your child will end up when they hit the employment world?
    ...but it sure is fun to guess!
    I have my money on my DS3 either becoming a lawyer....or a professional bull rider whistle

    Hehehe, so there'll be a lot of bullpoop involved either way? laugh

    I can see my GS10 becoming a lawyer...it'd be a shame to waste his arguing skills!

    Wren #54522 09/04/09 10:43 AM
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    Originally Posted by Wren
    After having DD4 fall backwards, after sitting crosslegged on the picnic table, head first onto concrete on Tuesday, I think object lessons are really relative.
    I think my lines drawn for object lessons were reasonable -- and, no, this is not something I'd stand by and watch/let happen to any child. That wouldn't be a lesson at all; that'd be cruel & irresponsible. Certainly there's plenty of fuzzy gray area along that dividing line between "object lessons" and "child endangerment," which parents need to discover for themselves.

    Originally Posted by Wren
    I don't want DD experimenting with drugs or a friend with benefit. There are things I cannot control when she will be 14.
    Have your kids volunteer in a cancer clinic/hospice care environment. In the scouts, our troop volunteered for over one summer month @ 3x's week. The stories we heard first hand along with the images we saw were infinitely more powerful than the most "serious" video about drug abuse that we were forced to watch in school. 30+ years later and not a single one of us has ever been mixed up in drugs... and those of us still in contact credit that experience first and foremost. That was an object lesson, too.

    Originally Posted by Wren
    So why is not letting your child eat PB different than forcing my child to eat the fruits and vegetables when her problem is with her bowels. Your allergy is more of an exception than her physical problem?
    If lack of fruits & veggies causes icky bowels -- and does not risk loss of life, limb or eyeball -- hopefully the child (with parental guidance) will be able to make the connection between healthy diet and happy bowels.

    Our kids were wickedly allergic to dairy as infants and at that age, it was our responsibility entirely. Now, as kids, a little too much milk still causes considerable discomfort (to put it mildly). They once were at a friends house & had a big milkshake, despite knowing that they weren't supposed to. Both of them were in turmoil that night & we had no trouble connecting-the-dots with them. Two & three years of "Don't drink too much milk"... "Don't drink too much milk!" ... didn't work. But it's been 18 months since the "Great Milkshake Incident of 2008" and they don't even hear the ice cream truck anymore.

    Contrast this with my sister's kid who apparently has such a severe reaction to peanuts that anaphylactic shock is almost a guarantee... and my sister even keeps a tracheal tube in each vehicle just in case. So, no, I wouldn't advocate a "let him find out for himself" approach here.

    I know that parenting styles vary wildly; and despite my absolute perfection in all other realms, I probably will make a mistake in child rearing at some point in the future. So I sure as heck won't sit here and say my way is the best for everyone -- it's just the best for us.

    This old ditty has worked very well as a guide in our family for as far back as anybody can recall: "What doesn't kill 'em, makes 'em stronger."


    Being offended is a natural consequence of leaving the house. - Fran Lebowitz
    Wren #54528 09/04/09 01:07 PM
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    Originally Posted by Wren
    Discussing this theorectally.

    grin

    Originally Posted by Wren
    And how many of parents out there have to "force" kids to do homework. Apparently none who responded.

    I do. The lesson for him is a little different than cause and effect, though. Actually, I guess it depends on what is considered "force". That being said, homework has always been the mother of all battles in this house, because he doesn't want to do it, doesn't see the point, thinks it's too easy, would rather do anything else, and any other reason you could imagine. Eventually, the horror of facing the teacher minus homework wins out and he opts for the lesser of two evils. It used to take lots of patience, reminders, raised voices, focus directing, and just plain old "sit your backside down and get it done" on my part. However, now that I've imposed a time limit on getting it done, it's less stressful (for me, anyway) - if it's not complete because he did everything but, then it's packed up and he can take it to school incomplete (the lesson being, we all have to do things we don't want to do and we only prolong the misery by putting it off). If that's "forcing", then yeah, I do it.

    spook #54567 09/05/09 02:43 AM
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    Totally get your point Spook. And if DD chooses to smell the flowers, fine, as long as she can support her lifestyle. I am a firm believer that you go to school to get a job and after school you support yourself.

    That is how I grew up and everyone I knew. This thing about kids living with their parents after college didn't happen, unless rarely.

    My brother brought up his son that way, who is a generation older than DD. My nephew said he wanted to be an NHL referree. My brother said fine, but I am not paying your tuition. He took engineering instead, got a job, is now married, bought a 5 bedroom house and is very happy and proud of himself and his success.

    DD doesn't have to become an engineer and buy a 5 bedroom house. But I expect her to support herself when she gets out of school. I totally get going to the army and I totally get trades -- I did get an engineering degree. I just don't see DD doing that and she has said she hates crafts, so Martha Stewart she aint. She loves science experiements but sitting still, quietly is not her thing. She likes the adrenlin rush. She is almost my clone in that regard. And why I think I will teach her to trade when she gets to grade 7. She is visual spatial, she is way more strategic than I am and I made my living on Wall Street that way. Doesn't mean she has to trade but it is easy work, that makes at least 7 figures rather than 6 with managed risk on little money. And will support her habit, should she choose to smell the flowers. More likely explore tidal pools -- her summer afternoon hobby.

    Ren

    Wren #54568 09/05/09 03:07 AM
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    Hi Wren

    Don't get me wrong, everyone knows their own kids the best and we all like to imagine what they will be when they grow up - I'm with Floridama on Lawyer but reckon he could make a good actor too - shame to waste that gift of the gab but who knows... I do know what he won't be and that's an athlete, dreadful motor skills, an artist - ditto, an astronaut or airline pilot (his picks), unless we sort the anaphalactic (sp?)thing first.

    But my mum always thought I would go into politics - future PM, I always wanted to save the world and had very strong views as a teenager on the state of it. smile (oh how we grow up). But like you say when the reality hit that my parents would have to pay for me to go to Uni and I couldn't see them sacrifice any more it was time for me to stand on my own two feet and support myself. Then life simply took over and I think my mother is still upset with me but heh maybe her expectations were a little too stars and not enough flowers?

    DH and I was just talking today about our 8 year plan (we've just bought a coffee shop franchise) and need to sell our gorgeous home to help offset some of the cost but that's ok we think we have it worked out (?!) and we said the main thing is if DS makes it to Uni we would like to make sure he can make it through debt free - then he's on his own. So at the moment our mantra is guide and provide then keep our fingers crossed it all pays off and he keeps his old folks comfortable in their old age!

    Good luck with the whole Trading thing - we still don't trust the markets after we lost a heap of money back in 1986 and were glad we stuck to property here, (which I don't think has suffered here the way it has in the US).

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