Specifically, Gavin is having problems with the spatial awareness activities, which are the first ones on the program. You cannot progress through the entire curriculum without passing the activities with a specific score.
Once again, Gavin's mind functions like mine. Just as we both don't care for certain textures when it comes to food, we both have poor spatial awareness.
I'm very clumsy, though, and I still have issues telling right from left, whereas he is generally more graceful than me, and is quicker to identify right and left.
Also, I have an affinity for puzzles and geometry, but I can't understand algebra. Meanwhile, Gavin has an affinity for abstract concepts and algebra, but he can't grasp visual math such as geometry, shapes, sequences, and so forth.
He was really discouraged by his inability to pass the activities without making several attempts, and he thought maybe someone who is "smarter" would do better. I told him this has nothing to do with intelligence, but with how his mind works - that everybody learns in different ways and not all people will do well when presented with the same kind of work. He still thought it was a matter of not knowing enough or being smart enough, so I ended up teaching a different kind of lesson in logic and reasoning.
I set an empty pot next to the electric kettle, and asked him which would boil water faster. He pointed to the electric kettle. Then I showed him why the electric kettle is more efficient at boiling water - the heating coil is inside the water, whereas the pot must conduct heat from the stove top, into the water, thus taking more time.
As I explained it, "Both get the job done. The kettle is just faster because of how it is made and how it works. The same goes for the human brain. No two brains are the same, so no two brains work the same way. Your brain might process information differently than another 10-year-old's. Therefore, you cannot teach them the same way."
That helped him feel better. :)
So, for now, our logic curriculum is a no-go. I'm going to explore other options and try to find something that works with how Gavin learns and thinks.
Copyright (c) 2013 Wendy L. Callahan