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Monday, January 28, 2008

Homeschooling Two?!

Today we had a snowy day, and Sara (Tom's 8 year old NT sister) was home for the day. So we tried homeschooling both of them together.

Reading was no problem - we just had each read aloud to us from books they're involved with (James and the Giant Peach for Tom; Spiderwick for Sara).

But then I thought I'd do some read-aloud reading comprehension exercises with the two of them, taking turns asking them for answers. It was amazing: Tom really had relatively little problem coming up with a credible "main idea" for a paragraph - while Sara was totally lost. He was also quick at getting meanings of words from their contexts - another thing that, in theory, he should have found tough. Sara quickly teared up, got upset, and then ceased to even try.

Then we went to math. There, Sara shone and Tom had trouble - and it was very hard to get Sara to STOP and let her brother take a turn. I noticed that he slipped very quickly into his "if someone else will do the work, why should I pay attention?" mode - and basically stopped listening or attending at all! I was having them count up straws (pretending they were cookies) and then give the same number of cookies to each of five kids (represented by cups). Sara instantly understood that she was to give each "kid" 4 "cookies." Tom, who I'm sure COULD have understood, just turned his brain off!

I'm obviously NOT ready to homeschool both of my kids! What's interesting to me, though, is that Tom only goes into his "I dunno" mode when Sara is standing by to do the work. Sara, though, frustrates to the point of tears with or without Tommy around.

Not quite sure what makes her NT and Tom ASD... except the fact that Sara "gets" people, while Tom lives inside his head much of the time. Is ASD and "daydreamer" the same thing??

4 comments:

The Glasers said...

It makes you wonder how people with ten children do it! :-)

I was lucky that David was three-years old when we first started. So, I let him play for three years while I concentrated on Pamela.

debi said...

I love the wondering because I do it too. Daydreaming, self-absorbed, sometimes I feel like the prospective detective! I guess it seems this way because I can't see any type of pattern in my son. :-)

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