I’ve been in a teaching funk.

We did shapes, colors, animals, animal sounds, letters, and counting (to 15), but after that, I didn’t know where to go next.

She wasn’t interested in learning how to write, so I was stumped. I really haven’t taught her anything new of importance since before Christmas, and I so I was starting to feel like a homeschool Mom failure before I even began.

And every time I read one of Mozi Esme’s letter craft projects, I felt even more behind.

So I mentioned to Chris the other night that I needed inspiration on what to teach Ali next.

He suggested that I teach her how to type.

Aha! Why haven’t I thought of that?! I am constantly trying to keep her overly excited little paws off of my computer (as shown in my B-Sides Wordless Wednesday post), so she would LOVE that!

Of course I felt a sneaking bit of guilt in teaching her how to type before she could write, but I justified it away with “The world is a changing place!! Kids need to know how to type these days!”

So the next morning, I put her in my lap and asked if she would like to type some words.

Her eyes lit up with excitement as if I had just told her she was getting a pet baby elephant.

So I opened Word, set the font size to 22 and caps locked it, and asked her what she wanted to write.

Of course she wanted to write Ali, then Pop, then Daddy.

I had her attention span for much longer than I expected. I would tell her that she needed to type an “L” next, and she would get out her little pointy finger and scan the keyboard back and forth while saying to herself, “where’s the L. . .where’s the L. . .where’s the L. . .where’s the L. . . THERE’S THE L!!!”.

Then she lost interest and just wanted to type random letters.

So after that practice round, I later asked her if she would like to email Daddy.

Again, I got the baby elephant reaction.

I used this opportunity to teach her about the benefits of the space bar. She again, did much better than I expected.

So here was her first email to Daddy:




I think “AllKi” might be slang from her nickname, Ali Qaeda, that our small group bestowed on her during her terror-of-an-infant stage.

After that, she miraculously was interested in learning how to write as well. So we’ve been “playing” at writing letters, and she’s been mildly successful with writing V’s and A’s.

So, the moral of this post is, technology is not the evil monster coming to turn our kid’s minds into mush and make them never learn the basics.

It might just excite them enough to make them want to learn after all.

Even if their name is Ali Qaeda.

6 thoughts on “Oh, This Generation. . .

  1. I’m so far behind on teaching my 3 yr old. You are light years ahead of us. I need to get my butt in gear. Thank you for the tip, though, she would love to work on the computer.

  2. Wait… What? You are a Teaching Ninja. Or Obsessive. I can’t decide which.

    You’re running in high gear right now. You do realize that most kindergarteners have to learn to write THERE, right?

    I just hope you don’t run out of gas before Age 4. ;)

    (On a serious note, I’m speaking as a former obsessive who did this with #1. By #2 and #3, I was totally fried. Just sayin. :)

  3. I agree with Steph. You’re doing a GREAT job with her. The thing that impresses me is that you’re not teaching her just the basics (letters, numbers, etc), but you’re also teaching her how to be creative (painting for Chris’ Father’s Day gift, drawing shapes in the pile of salt, sorting shapes, etc).

    I, too, was very proactive when it came to teaching Harris. Of course, it helped that he has always had such an appetite to learn. David is a completely different ball of wax, though, and his interest in learning is…different.

    Remember, at Ali’s age, you don’t have to be on a strict “school schedule”. I’m convinced that whether we realize it or not, we teach them what we sense they are ready to learn. If you hit a lull, then just take it that she’s not quite ready to officially learn a new concept, but she is still processing information and learning every day with her interaction with you and the world around her.

    Whew. Can you tell I haven’t had a chance to use up my verbal word skills in the last few days? And if this doesn’t make any sense, I blame it on the fever.

  4. Great Blog Rachel! This is Emily from facebook…my sister has a four and two year old. She has done all those things too, but she gets neat ideas from the Monastory schooling coriculum…she works on “copying” mommy and doing what she does. Kids learn alot of other things like coordination that way as well. Teach her how to sweep the floor, or wipe down furniture with those clingy dust cloths. :) She does Disney website for both the girls and they play games on it.She did reading with the 4 year old when she was 3 and she got it really well. I say if you have the desire and connection with your daugther like that, then why not?! You are such a good Mom! ~Emily

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