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About ThoughtfulMama

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    Hive Mind Level 2 Worker: Nurse Bee
  1. I have it, and my parents said I always did as a child too. As an adult I'm much more in tune, and I try to eat as soon as the "hangry" starts and before the shakes set in. My DD (5) also has it. The first symptom is irrational crying, which can be hard to determine except in retrospect. Then her lips turn white and she gets blue circles under eyes. We lay her out flat on the floor and have her sip juice until she has color again. Her pedi said it's much more common in girls in his experience (DH and DS have never experienced it). *Note - oatmeal is also a terrible trigger for me, which is too bad because I like it. Our whole family eats mainly paleo now (kids are more relaxed about it) mostly because it keep me and DD more stable.
  2. Mine also learned to read whole-word and never really learned phonics UNTIL he started spelling in first grade. As soon as he figured out the phonics rules (which was really fast compared to how long it takes an emerging reader), then his teacher switched out his spelling for more difficulty. I don't have a curriculum to suggest, but I just wanted to add in that phonics CAN be taught after reading is already established.
  3. We've read almost everything suggested above, but I've got another option for you. I still read to him! Yes, my 9-year-old can easily read almost anything, but I still read to him before bed every night, and I plan to for a long time. We started Harry Potter (out loud) at about 6. I had already read the whole series myself multiple times, but he had no issues with the first 2 books. Then we took a pause before book 3 and another pause before book 4 (read at 8.5-years-old). I honestly don't think he will ever be emotionally ready for book 5, but at some point we will plow through it. Right now I am reading the Little House on the Prairie series aloud to him. There are a few sentences that I skip (dealing with the Indians), and there are lots of things that I help interpret and discuss. I am really enjoying reading this series with my new adult perspective - Ma is so passive, and Pa doesn't really take her opinions into account. I didn't even see that as a kid. And I bought the Little House cookbook for us to play around with (I'm sure Ma would be appalled that I substituted coconut oil for her lard).
  4. I didn't. He was my first, and both DH and I are smart, so it all seemed normal to me. It was other people pointing things out. Learned the alphabet before be could walk? Taught himself to read before was 3? Chapter books before he started Pre-K? All seemed regular to me. It was other people who were shocked and either wanted us to go on Ellen or told us that they "allowed their kids to play and be kids." I did notice some things with language. He eventually needed speech therapy to deal with some oral coordination problems, so he would completely avoid attempting words with certain sounds. Instead he'd use more complex synonyms that he could pronounce; e.g. "cat" would come out sounding like "tat" so he used the word "feline" instead. And now it's so normal to me for him to use words and phrasing more in tune with a law professor, that I don't even notice most of the time unless somebody else mentions it. After reading from what other people said above, the nurse at the hospital noticed it with him too. He was in the basinet in my room getting ready for a test, and he was practically rolling over to look at me and hear my voice. She said she'd never seen a baby want his mama so much. But, again, I thought all babies did that. And since we already had one gifted, nothing little sister does surprises us much either. I think we are more likely to see her strengths that occur in areas that are different from him, but we don't really have any idea what a baseline is.
  5. I also have a voracious 9 year-old, but he is also very sensitive. Therefore, we are making sure that he has a chance to read EVERYTHING that is age appropriate, and it doesn't matter if he gets through a book in less than an hour. He advanced so quickly that I know there are books that I don't want him to skip just because they are "below" his reading level. For example, this week he's reading lots of Beverly Cleary books, and we're doing the Little House on the Prairie series together because I enjoy it. None of these are challenging literature for him, but they are books that I still remember in detail from when I was a kid, and I don't want him to miss out. So what I'm saying is, if you were a reader, what were YOUR favorites? And the way that we are accomplishing this is for him to read on a Kindle Paperwhite. I like it because it has less eye strain than an LCD screen. I can load on 10 library books at a time for free (depends on your local library), and I can reload as often as I need. Other stuff that he has loved: Mrs. Piggle Wiggle (and series), Pippi Longstocking (and series), Harry Potter (up through book 4, and now we stop until he's ready for the mature content), some of the Judy Blume books (Tales of a 4th Grade Nothing, for example), Bunnicula series, Phantom Tollbooth, A Wrinkle in Time series, Black Stallion series, Roald Dahl books. ETA: I just reread that you are already using a Kindle, so I'm sure you doing the refill every few days like I am! ETA2: To actually challenge his reading skills, we generally go to non-fiction. He likes science and technical reading, so we let him loose there.
  6. Geronimo Stilton has several great series. Some are chapter books and some are comic-book style novels which my DS started getting into at about 5 years old. At that age he also devoured The Littles series. But I'm also going to say picture books are where it is at! We love the Elephant and Piggie books my Mo Williems (sophisticated humor). Bernenstain Bears, Little Golden Books (especially the older ones from used book stores), The Day the Crayons Quit, Dragons Love Tacos, Robot Sauce are a few that come to mind and books that the whole family enjoys. And, of course, any classics that you loved as a kid are still around. Don't skip them!
  7. My first early reader (now 8) didn't pick up on phonics until he started doing spelling at 6, and he had absolutely no issue with learning it then. My second early reader (now 4) has learned phonics and is a master at sounding out words, though her reading level is not nearly as advanced as her whole-word brother was at this age. Neither approach is right or wrong, and actually we couldn't change how they chose to approach reading in any case. I am strongly in favor of picture books because there are plenty of ones with sophisticated reading and age-appropriate stories. However, I'm also not against chapter books and some longer books too. The Littles series is great, and he really enjoyed the Geronimo Stilton series (both the chapter books and the graphic novels). We don't homeschool, so feel free to take this with a grain of salt, but I'd stop worrying about TEACHING reading as a curriculum and just let her continue to read as much as she wants for now. Also, keep reading TO her. There is benefit to that as well, and you can explore some books that you enjoy. I hope that it's a family tradition that we will keep up for a long time still.
  8. I'd want it at least introduced before he gets put in a situation where he gets in an argument with a teacher or another student about what "A" is. I'm sure that he will learn them quickly, and since he's already reading I wouldn't think there would be a problem with telling him each letter has both a sound and a name.
  9. My 8-year-old is using Wordly Wise for spelling/vocabulary. Most of the words are not new to him, but there is more analysis of the word structure done. However, we try to keep writing as a very separate thing. He tend to be a perfectionist, and sometimes you just need to get the ideas down on paper even if you can't spell all the words.
  10. A 2, my DS taught himself to read long before he learned how to climb on the couch.
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