Wednesday, March 19, 2014

School (In Case You Thought We Had it All Together)

The past week or so I noticed an interesting and promising trend - math facts were taking less and less time each day.  When I timed one of the kids to check on their progress, I discovered that this particular child was finished with a stack of 100 flashcards in 2 minutes.  Hmmm...somehow that didn't add up.

When I asked this child to go through the stack with me just to make sure the truth was being told, a massive tantrum ensued.  And the truth was out.  The flashcards were not being done in their entirity every day.  Instead, one child was doing the first few cards of each stack, pretending to finish them, and then putting them neatly back on the shelf.  The other child has been missing the flashcards on some days (which I knew) because the other work was taking FOREVER to accomplish.

I don't mind if the progress is slow.  I don't really mind how many math facts the kids have memorized at this point.  What I do mind is hiding the truth and acting like they had done all of their assignments when they simply had not.

So, the math Nazi came out, sat each child in a chair, and started the timer.  One kiddo, who was literally kicking and screaming through a subtraction set, took a whopping 32 minutes to finish a stack of 100 flashcards.  This child made considerable improvement with the addition cards as the tantrum had ended and things could move forward at a more reasonable pace - about 13 minutes for the stack.

The other child did better attitude-wise, and although the time wasn't really fast, the facts were correct and overall I am pleased with where this kid is at in the math world.

All of this took about an hour to work through - discovery of the deceipt, forcing of the flaschards, and plodding through the pack.  In that time I saw Abby and Jeremiah waltz through the front rooms in about five different hats, pairs of shoes, and other paraphernalia.  The toy area is a disaster and there are things scattered all over the floor throught the house.  We missed Rachel's nursing session, Abby's preschool, and Jeremiah's coloring time.

And when we were finally wrapping up, I overheard Abby and Jer alternately calling out numbers from the school room.

Apparently they enjoy doing flashcards.

May it always be so!

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