Thursday, January 10, 2013

Tot School Goals - 2013 Reflections

Last spring I wrote a post about my goals for doing Tot School with my son.  All of those goals still hold true, but I thought it was time I reflect on where we are and where we want to go this year.

#1  Develop a Love of Learning
I am so happy to say that Xander truly does love learning.  He drinks in information, whether I am trying to teach him or not.  He is fascinated by new things and loves new vocabulary units.  I love knowing that not matter how hard I try, I will never be able to teach him new things as fast as he wants to learn them.  I hope to continue to foster this love of knowledge by making learning fun for him, not taxing or tedious.  

#2 Develop a Love of Reading & Familiarity with Words
Thus far, mission accomplished!  Xander LOVES books and reading.  He is somewhat selective about the books, but will sit and have me read to him for hours.  He also loves to sit and read to himself.  His vocabulary far exceeds what I would have expected for his age and he is reading more than I could have hoped.  Even our doctors have commented on how articulate he is for his age, which is especially surprising given that he has had chronic fluid in his ears for the last year.  He can read a few hundred words, although I'm not sure the exact number because he is always reading me words I didn't think he knew.  (I really wish he would read for the camera!!)  We are still doing the whole word method, and I plan to continue for the foreseeable future.  However, I think he is starting to figure out some of the phonics on his own.  I hope to get him really comfortable with the sight words this year to improve his reading fluency.  I would love for him to end the year reading full sentences rather than just reading the individual words of a sentence.

We will definitely continue using Little Reader, the program to which I attribute most of his reading skills.  I will continue making him personalized lessons, time permitting, of course.  I also plan to continue using the 3 Part Cards to reinforce the words I teach him.  Now that he is a little older and capable of more, I would like to incorporate more word/reading games.

This picture just had to go with this post!  I love how on Christmas morning, when he was literally surrounded by new toys, he stopped to read his new books.  (Proud mama!)

#3  Develop Fine Motor Skills

Honestly, I have no idea where Xander is relative to the "norm" for fine motor skills.  He can color and do a little bit of tracing, but not very well.  I know I need to make an effort to improve these skills, because they are our limiting factor.  It seems like a whole world of preschool-type activities and workbooks open up to us once he is able to try writing.  However, he just turned 2.  I realize we have a while before his motor skills catch up to some of his cognitive ones.  It isn't a race, so we will get there when we get there.  :)

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