As a mom, if there is something that I would like my kids to imbibe early aside from a genuine relationship with the Lord, is the love for learning. At 21 months, it is a delight to hear Judah say many words like milk, apple, open, na-na (banana), out, star, sky, boat, shoes, feet, hair, and by that I mean words that are clear enough for his mother to perceive and understand. We taught him 1 + 1 = 2, not the principle of addition but just to say 2 whenever he’s given that question what is 1 plus 1. He knows that a skunk is stinky but still calls a lion, dog.
I am sooo thrilled at this stage when Judah is such a sponge to whatever we teach him and how easily he remembers things we introduce to him through picture books during bedtime and says them the next morning. (I wish it worked that way during my calculus or biochemistry days).
Just yesterday, we discovered that he can already answer “what’s your name.” He says Judah na-dad (Trinidad). And there is THIS area that Judah I believe will excel in because it’s more of a gifting (will blog more about this…)
More than learning per se, I’d like Judah to be infused with the love for learning. What’s the diff? I want him to experience that learning can be enjoyed and that studying, though it is a task, can be full of fun. Here are opportunities I intentionally incorporate learning with so it can be fun.
Outdoors. When we are in the car or walking in our neighborhood, I point at certain objects and teach him the word plus phonics. That is how he learned to say flo-wer. Then I add some technical terms like petal, for science, though he doesn’t usually get it yet. Then I would go to the leaves and teach him the word leaf, and have him feel and touch the texture of the leaf for sensory.
Indoors. Judah learned to say sky and airplane when Daniel my husband started pointing them in the window of our bedroom before nap time. We also taught him hot and cold through a cup of coffee.
Books. A mom once shared to me that if I didn’t want to pay college tuition fee for my children, just give them books early. They will learn to love books enough to cause them to excel and be granted scholarships! How clever. So now we use picture books and some first words books for Judah. Again without the pressure. Just purely fun browsing pages!
Play. I encountered this Everyday I Learn Through Play through a blog I follow and I thought of sharing it with you. It has helped me a lot in being my kids’ first teacher, minus the pressure.
Tickles and cuddles. When we ask Judah a certain question and gives the right answer, we don’t just cheer for him or say “good job,” we tickle him and cuddle him. It’s a family thing. Probably creating traditions like this also help create an environment of loving learning.
Fun in learning = love for learning, will soon be love for learning = fun in learning. He will need the latter in times when he doesn’t “feel” like learning or when he is not into the subject. Sure he will have his own set of interests but his love for learning will help him go through and be excellent.