We had a wonderful park day a couple of days ago. I wanted to try something I read on a blog that I just happened on the other day which I am sorry to say, I did not bookmark or pin. Right! What was I thinking?
At any rate, this blogger talked about having a difficult time getting her daughter to do her math and her scenario played out exactly as ours does in our home. You know the one I am sure, "I hate this." "I am NOT doing this" as they rip the paper or wad it up pinch the eraser from the pencil or snap the pencil in half. Any number of these scenarios play out at my house any time I mention math or place a math problem in front of him. Well anyway, one day the daughter says to her mother, "let's go swing". So feeling the need to back up a little she acquiesced and the daughter says, OK, you give me a multiplication problem and if I get it right, you push me the number of times for the answer. (I am paraphrasing here.). To the mother's surprise, she got them all right and thus began the swinging math lessons (my words).
I thought I would try this, so off to the park we go (I don't have a swing in my yard). I talked to 'little man' about it and he seemed excited to do this. I packed a picnic and my daughter and I took 'little man' to a well visited park in the area. He decided that he did not want to eat but would rather play, so we allowed him a bit of free time. After about an hour, I said OK, it is 'swing time', and here we go. I started with a really simple addition problem which he got correct and got the appropriate number of pushes, (I am thinking this will motivate him). Then on to the multiplication. "OK, what is 2x4?" He answers correctly and receives the appropriate number of pushes once again. "Now what is 2x8? Here he is having a bit of difficulty and that's OK, I expected it, so I just wait as he ponders the question, and he finally comes up with 16, correctly, and receives his pushes. Then just as I am about to go for broke here with another one, he says "Can we be done with this now?" I was done. He would do no more and I knew it. I could push this issue but what is the point, he is shutting down as he asked the question. So instead, I let him go play and have a good time, meeting some new friends and I go back to my blanket and the multitude of squirrels that are beginning to surround us, which of course we attempt to scatter. Then 'little man' comes over and says how cute they are, "can I feed them" Sure why not. He takes a handful of Frito's and here is what we saw.
I think at one point there were a half dozen squirrels practically waiting in line for a Frito. He was ecstatic that they actually came up and took the Frito from his fingers.
So all in all, I would consider that this day at the park was a successful one, we got a teensy bit of math done, Oh and also, he did actually sit on the blanket for a few and finished the 2's in order to get to go to Cici's for pizza. So I felt like a winner and so did he.
Not to mention while eating our pizza, we (his mom and I and anyone in hearing distance) received a lesson on the ingredients on his pizza, where it came from, how he thinks they made it and whether it is really good for you or not. Yep, another good thing on this day.