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Author Topic: Second Child - Lack of Interest  (Read 7702 times)
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« on: February 04, 2013, 04:42:01 AM »

I discovered early learning/Doman when my first child was almost a year old. I was fascinated by it and started teaching my daughter. She LOVED it. She mostly loved the reading, but she also enjoyed the physical program, math, and Spanish as a second language. My implementation was very imperfect and we had better success in some areas than others. I spent lots of time learning new ways to teach my daughter, and then taught her.

When my daughter turned 3 years old, I had a son. I followed, imperfectly, the Doman How to Make Your Baby Smarter program for the first 10 months of my son's life. At 10 months the boy could run, and ever since it has been difficult to teach him anything. I have tried many things (but perhaps not enough). He just won't watch anything reading related - no DVD, no LR, no flashcard, no readeez, no sparkabilities. He will read about 1-2 books before bed, and that is it. He is not interested, and I am out of motivation. I haven't tried everything, but I am just out of energy to figure out what next to try with him.

I feel guilty. It seems I gave (and still give) my daughter a lot of opportunities to learn. At age 5 she is reading about a grade 3-4 level. She has a limited knowledge of Spanish (and we are an English only household), and she continues to be interested in learning Math. I continue to be able to teach her and find new development activities for her that she LOVES and soaks up.

However, I am at a loss for my now 2 year old son. He is happy. He is energetic. He loves to play with a stick and ball and trucks all day. I struggle to find active games that incorporate math or reading. He is very active, but he won't brachiate, and swimming in winter is impossible here. I know every day is wasting away, time is of the essence, and yet, weeks go by and I do nothing. In my mind, my daughter should be an obvious motivator - she successfully learned to read by age 3, and continues to improve every day. Why can't I teach my son?

Anyone else struggling to teach their second child? Am I just burnt out?

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« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2013, 04:47:09 AM »

Well, it sounds like he's totally happy and healthy, so well done to you!

If you'd like to sneak in just 1 session a day, try telling him he can stay up and watch Little Reader with you/the family, or he can go to bed if he's tired, the choice is his.  LOL If not, interest levels can come and go, perhaps in a few months he will show a huge interest and accelerate very quickly. Either way, as long as he is happy and healthy, you are doing great!


Proud Momma to DD 11/28/08 & DS 12/29/09, exactly 1 year, 1 month, and 1 day apart in age. Check out my youtube channel for BrillKids Discounts and to see my early learners in action! smile
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« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2013, 06:59:19 PM »

Your story sounds like how it was for me with our second child.
I was mystified as to why nothing I tried seemed to work.
I felt guilty for ages as I could not find the key.
Of course I did not have Brillkids back then.

She has grown up to be a fantastic teacher herself.

« Last Edit: February 05, 2013, 11:13:36 PM by Ilala » Logged
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« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2013, 01:55:08 PM »

I have a slightly different experience - my older child is much more of a challenge to teach than the younger one!  I also feel tired and burned out - I feel very disappointed and demoralised that learning is not the enjoyable experience shared between mother and daughter that I had envisaged.  I keep wondering what I'm doing wrong.  But my younger son is only 18 months and he already is far more involved with LR and any kind of learning activity.  He has a completely different personality to his older sister and cries when I turn it off!

With my older daughter I have to work constantly to avoid a battle if I want to do any learning activities.  She can read well but is not always enthusiastic about doing so!   I do believe that different children have very different personalities.  I sometimes get hung up on needing to do everything early and whilst this is a great goal, for some kids, it doesn't work out that way.  But it doesn't mean they cannot make amazing progress at a later stage. 

My advice for your son is to try doing activities during snack or meal times.  I find that we have lot more success that way with showing a LR session or anything on the computer. For active boys it can be very hard to sit still and concentrate.  You could show flashcards showing trucks and lorriesor anything that he's interested in and teach numbers, colours, names of vehicles etc this way.  Also try to incorporate teaching games that involve moving and running around.  Maybe run to get a flash card that is hidden amongst his toys in some way.

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« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2013, 09:41:13 PM »

 You seem to be really critical of yourself. Please, for your own sake & your son's, let go of some of the stress you are placing on yourself. Your son RAN at 10mos, yet mine didn't walk on his own until 14mos, & we have only started to scratch the surface of the toilet training issue. It may sound cliche, but every child really is unique & boys really are different than girls. As the mother of a grown son & a toddler son, I will share a couple of things I learned with the older one (adopted at 15yrs, but functioning at age 7yrs, as a result of neglect):

1. Read TO him, even if he is hanging upside down off of his bed, picking his nose with one hand & throwing Hot Wheels at the ceiling fan. A much older mother of 8 told me this when our older son arrived, & I thought she was insane, but reading to him allowed him to hear much more interesting stories than he was capable of digesting on his own. Once he realized what "cool" stuff could be found in books, he quickly decided to pick some of his own books to read & became perfectly content to read aloud to us or read silently...which leads to my second point:

2. Most little kids' books are LAME, BORING, PREACHY, SAPPY or otherwise annoying to mischievous, active, adventure-seeking little boys!  Boys don't care if the Berenstain Bears cleaned their room..they just don't! While I realize that boys need to learn manners, citizenship & ABCs, their story books should have stories of interest to THEM. Be careful when choosing his material to pick books he might actually like rather than what you wish he would like or what "experts" think he should read. Don't try to give him nightmares, but don't be afraid to read stories about pirates & knights or Daniel in the lion's den! Once he finds out that there are all sorts of adventures & villains to be faced in books, then it's time to say "Do you want to read the rest of the series? Yes? Well, come over here & learn how to sound out the words."

[ FYI: Check out the resource list in The Well-Trained Mind for children's editions of classics & other good meaty reading. Many can be purchased from Dover Publications for only a few dollars each!]

The fact that you are here in this forum, seeking counsel from like-minded parents means you are leaps ahead of what most parents are doing for their children, & your children will be ahead, too...even your little speedster.

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« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2013, 02:58:11 PM »

Funny and refreshing.


I am illustrating a Reading Bear Story.

The Pig and the Mill
Tim makes a zip line.(impossible without grow up help)
He isn't wearing a helmet when he zips and he does hit the pig.

I am less worried about all this after your post.

I have tried to anchor the story into fantasy.
Might be OK .

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