Today I had to warn Ben that he was going to grow up some day. That was my explanation for why he had to learn his letters and the sounds they make. Ben is 4.
I said, "Ben, I really care about you. That's why it is important to me that you do well in life. And that means you have to learn certain things to succeed, like the alphabet. Do you understand?"
His shoulders slumped. His eyes rolled. But he said, "Yes."
I thought I got through to him, so I sat him in front of The Letter Factory, a fantastic video from Leapfrog that teaches kids how to recognize letters and their sounds. I have made it a part of my preschool program as a supplement to actually writing the letters and testing the kids on the sounds they make.
Ben is sleeping as I write this, because to prove to me how boring this movie is, he forces himself to sleep during the whole thing. I don't care. I am teaching him through osmosis or maybe it's just sinking in subconsciously.
Today is the third day in a row that he has fallen asleep during The Letter Factory, but what's funny about him sleeping is that for the past year that I have been watching him, except for when he comes over already asleep, he NEVER takes naps.
What's interesting about his learning, even with his defiance toward it, is that he gets better at remembering his letters and sounds every day despite the fact that (or maybe because of it) he falls asleep while the video is running.
Oops! The video is over. Time to start it again!