Saturday, September 5, 2015

Is This Appropriate for My Kindergartener?

Dear Mariel,
My 5 year old was given this assignment in kindergarten during the first week of school. As you can see from the size of my fingernails, the boxes are very small. My daughter's teacher says on his website that he isn't concerned as to whether or not students complete the grid or make letter strokes correctly; he just wants them to hold a pencil the right way. My daughter is upset she didn't finish. What's your take on this?
-Reader

Dear Reader,
I think this task is inappropriate on so many levels. First, a child should learn to write letters perfectly, one at a time. The emphasis should be quality over quantity. Also, I agree that the size is too small, and kindergarteners are typically given lined paper with dashes. I disagree with the idea of giving a child a task that they are not expected to finish. A child should be given tasks which he or she can complete successfully. I see that your child reversed the letter "s" several times and that the teacher didn't correct this. Where was the teacher? Children should not be given work that just keeps them busy.
-Mariel

1 comment:

  1. I agree with you that this task is inappropriate. [I am somewhere between CM and unschooling, my daughter is 5, But even if I did believe in teaching letters, which I don't, this page does seem wrong]. Just wanted to say that as for not mentioning the reverse S, I think that was good on the teacher. Most kids at this age reverse letters. It is something cognitive in the brain and not something they are in control of. To tell someone that something he is not in control of is wrong - is wrong in my eyes.

    [I do also believe in not correcting children, but letting them learn by themselves. I believe that when a child is corrected, what he ends up learning is how he is small and unable and doesn't know. Whereas if the child is not corrected, he will one day figure out the right way and then it will be his! But this is as a side note. Mu emphasis was children writing in reverse at this age...]

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