Leaping Out of the Box

Today was not our easiest day. It started off well – it’s the end of term and we have finished the syllabus requirements so we are really doing fun exercises to revise. I am also in the process of painting everything that stands still long enough in my house, and the playroom shelves were next on my list. So my thinking was, the kids can work at their lap desks in the playroom whilst I paint the shelves. We’ll fly through the work because it’s really easy and then they can go and play outside.

It started out like this…



But that didn’t last… Ha! Note how in the top pic Tiger is already clutching his forehead? Well this was when we started English. The maths went well. The phonics revision less so. He knew all the answers. Really! We had covered this work. So what had changed?

Reading this blog post tonight, I figured it out. I had moved him to a different room and placed all his work on one desk on his lap. That effectively pinned his legs down. He is “Body Smart – thinking with movement and touch. When excited they will move more, and have power to encourage others by the use of their bodies – chores, sports, hugs, dance, etc. Fidgets are helpful; they give the child a positive outlet for their processing. They need alternatives to physical movement or they will get into trouble by not controlling their bodies.”

At his desk in the schoolroom, he will lean back in his chair, put his head on the desk, put his feet on the wall, the desk, the window…he moves.. a lot! When we first started home schooling I tried to get him to sit still. I tried to get him to sit up straight and put both feet on the ground. In other words, I tried to change his smarts. I quickly learnt that if he had blocks to play with, he could listen well. If he had a piece of playdough to roll, he could read with relative ease. He needed his fidgets in order to concentrate. At our snack time, he runs around outside and comes back in invigorated.

This article made me realise that I am “Word Smart: thinking with words. When excited they will talk and write, and have the power to build others up, but when working for harm they criticize, tear others down, manipulate, and have the last word.” um..well..moving on…

Bear is predominantly “Nature Smart: thinking with patterns. When excited they will remember patterns and categories, and have the ability to naturally and easily compare and contrast, to tune into the environment, and prefer to be outside. But without an outlet for their smarts they may become discouraged and will not thrive with long stretches indoors.” This explains why he loves any theme to do with nature, he loves Science and Maths – but not word problems, creative writing (even though he is very creative) or comprehensions.

This explains for me why Dragon and I click. Why learning seems to be easy for him – we learn in the same way so my presentation will work for him. 

Now…how to incorporate this knowledge into our learning day…



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