Just because we ditched the formal, daily, 30 min home lessons and structured lesson plans we started a couple of weeks ago...doesn't mean that LC gave up on learning how to read/write/do math. I decided that a 3 1/2 year old needs to play, explore, discover...and learn in a self-initiated manner. I like that she follows her own interests, asks questions...without any pressure from me (or anyone else).
This morning (as we were getting ready to go grocery shopping):
LC: "Brush start letter b?"
(Sees the stuffed sea lion...)
LC: "Sea lion start letter c?"
Me: "That's a hard one...sea lion starts with the s-s-s-s-s sound, like snake."
LC: "S !"
Me: "That's right."
LC: "Pen starts with letter p. P-p-p-p-p sound."
Me: "Yes. Good job figuring that out."
LC: "Wand start letter w. Wand say w-w-w-w. That how you spell wand."
Me: "I can't believe you figured that out all by yourself."
LC: "Strange start letter s. S-s-s-s-s sound."
Me: "That was a hard one! How did you do that?...great job."
LC: "I figured out hard one. Yay. Airplane start letter a. That how you spell airplane."
Me: "WOW, I can't believe it. That's amazing."
LC: "Boots start letter b. You figured that out, mommy think that amazing. Picture start letter p. Mommy surprised I know spell. Box start letter b. B-b-b-b-b sound. Bag start letter b."
Me: "You're doing great, figuring all this out."
LC: "Tissue start letter t."
LC: "Jelly start letter j."
Me: "That's a hard one, good job!"
(Looking at all the objects in her environment...now spotting the outlet...)
Me: "Nice job."
LC: "Paper start letter p. Duck start letter d. Diamond start letter d. Flamingo start with letter f."
Me: "All of those are right...you are trying so hard...and I'm glad you like letters so much."
We attended a workshop last weekend. We had a great time socializing with the wonderful kids, caring parents and awesome teacher...we made art, learned some sign language, listened to live music- cello and French horn duet - and did some yoga together etc. LC told the teacher that she wanted to be an architect (while she was building a cool structure). Then, the teacher pointed up at a large ball (painted to resemble the earth) and asked the kids what it was...and LC said "that is a planet...the planet earth." When the teacher was about to start reading a book about an astronaut and the planets in our solar system...LC said "astronaut start with the letter a." Other parents, with kids a couple of months younger than LC, told us they were impressed by LC's knowledge and surprised that she is so bright since she isn't even attending school yet.
I heard her in the bathroom yesterday singing the alphabet song that she learned last year. It feels infinitely better to just let her take it at her own pace, witnessing her self-motivated discoveries and being there to help guide her along whenever she asks for help. She is one of the happiest kids on the block and I'd like to keep it that way.