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Author Topic: My son is not interested in learning anything, what should I do?  (Read 6029 times)
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VictoriaC
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« on: August 28, 2009, 11:57:08 AM »

Dear everyone,

I have a pair of twins, one boy and one girl, 25months old now.

My daughter is a keen learner, anything I expose her to she takes interest in and takes part in it. She's picked up sign language and new vocabularies through Singing Time, going to Shichida classes and Tweedlewink classes lately. I do manual flashcards with them whenever I have the time plus LR every night before going to bed.

My son on the other hand, though given the same opportunities, takes no interest in most of them but just wants to play with his car and spinning and twisting anything that is round.

Each time we attended Shichida or Tweedlewink class, he'll run around disturbing other kids. If I ever tried to pull him back or stopped him from venturing around, he'll cry and make a fuss and we almost always had to get out of the class so he could calm down and not distract other classmates further.

The reason I enrolled him into Tweedlewink and pulled him out of Shichida was to see if the gentler approach suits him better so he could benefit from the classes. Unfortunately that is not the case.

At home when I played DVDs such as Tweedlewink program, he'd lie down and looks at the screen blankly or requests repeatedly for his toy car. He would repeatedly spins the car's wheels and watches intently as the wheels spin.

One other thing to note is he seems extremely curious when we travel in our car. Often he'd struggle in his car seat so he could look back and turn to the front over and over throughout the entire journey to see the front and back view. My husband thinks he's trying to memorise the routes we take and I used to think that he likes the outdoor and is simply curious about what's happening out of home.

I recently read somewhere on the internet about how kids become computer or TV addicts. Apparently due to imbalance of the vesticular system, a child could be addicted to such things.

Does anyone have any experience that you could share? I'm kinda lost now, dont know what else to do. I'm a working mother with little free time except for an hour or two before bedtime with them every day and the weekends. I have little help at home in terms of teaching the kids and many a times I had had to ignore my son to concentrate on my daughter while teaching them. Whenever my son makes a fuss during "learning time" I'd put him in his cot so he could observe my daughter and hopefully she would set an example to him and he follows suit soon. I feel very guilty and yet helpless.

Help, anyone please?






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mother of faith
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« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2009, 08:25:21 PM »

Sometimes children need the hands on approach instead of the paper, book, and computer way of teaching. Does he learn well by using voice or music?

My first went through a period where he wanted nothing but his car! So I made his curriculum with the cars. I took a picture of his car and placed it on everything we did. He counted cars, he sorting cars by color, shape, and size, etc. Finally he grew out of it. If you are interested I can try to get the stuff together and send it to you through email so you can print it and use it yourself??????? Just let me know?

Also I have written some things on this post that might help you even though the age is different of the children.
http://forum.brillkids.com/general-discussion-b5/how-to-structure-the-day-need-inspiration!/msg39150/?topicseen#new

The things that he loves to do make that your main focal point. If he likes to spin etc, then make his curriculum where he has to spin the spinner to find the letter A, etc. Or go on a savenger hunt outside or in the house to find objects. Make it fun and challenging for him, a mystery to uncover.

If you want help in creating items based on his interests and his focal point let me know. I will be glad to assist you in this. We do this for a ministry to help others. PM me and let me know.

Oh and my first is around the same age as yours.

« Last Edit: August 28, 2009, 08:28:46 PM by mother of faith » Logged

DadDude
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2009, 11:07:27 PM »

Sounds like a typical boy.  My little guy totally spends most of the day playing with cars other "boy" stuff.  He would probably lose patience if we taught him a lot more than we do.

Your boy is learning.  He's just learning different things, what he can learn, from his cars and balls...

Also I totally endorse "mother of faith's" advice.  Get him books and videos and stuff about cars, trains, construction equipment...that might "hook" him into other stuff.  He needs persuasion!  You can't expect him to glom on to whatever you put in front of him.  You have to try lots of things...

« Last Edit: August 28, 2009, 11:09:26 PM by DadDude » Logged

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Quiet Cricket
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« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2009, 02:49:28 AM »

Does he like going for walks outside or playing on the playground?  Maybe he needs more time to burn off energy.  Figure out what he loves and use it to teach him things.  It might not be from flash cards but he is learning.  It might be hard during the week but you could try it on the weekend.  Comment on everything you see and hear.  My 25-month-old son loves animals and loves even the idea that we might see a bunny, deer, or hawk on our walks, or even an ant.  We talk about everything we hear and see, from a siren to the doves sitting on top of the house next to the park.  One day at our community pool he spent 30 minutes watching, entranced, as a colony of ants worked to move several large crumbs (from his lunch) into a hole in the bricks.  I watched with him and commented on what they were doing and it was amazing to see his attention span when I let him just follow what he was interested in at the moment.  I was actually quite entranced as well!

On flash cards, I have found that my son does not have a lot of patience for cards either. He is totally a hands-on learner and I have read and researched a lot about the Montessori method, which I have tried to implement to some extent in his toys and our daily activities and he loves most of what I have shown him.  On the flashcards, when we do them, it helps if there is a picture on the backside, even though he knows all what all the words mean, he still looks forward to looking at the picture.  A Montessori-type method would be to use an actual object with the flashcard, for example, show him "car" and then give him a toy car.  Or collect a bag full of "c" words that he can explore (i.e. a toy car, a comb, a plastic cow, etc), which will help him learn the beginning sound "c".

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Quiet Cricket
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« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2009, 03:07:03 AM »

Just a follow-up to my other post, not to be an alarmist, but if you continue to have concern, check with your pediatrician or with your local school district which may offer screening free of charge.  A few of the things you mention, like fascination with the spinning wheels on his toy car and difficulty in social situations, sound like some of the questions that were asked at my son's 2-yr-old well-child check-up on the autism screening questionnaire. 

I only offer this because of my own experience, which involves physical development: when my son was 10.5 months old and not yet crawling or getting to sitting from lying down, even though my Ped said it's probably nothing to worry about, he mentioned the service offered by the school district and I called the local school district which offers free-of-charge early intervention screening and therapy, if the child is diagnosed with a delay.  He was actually diagnosed with low muscle tone and a stiff neck (can't remember the technical term), which constituted enough of a physical developmental delay, and we received 3-4 visits from the physical therapist (free) who gave me exercises to do with him.  Within 2 months he had caught up to his age level (walking at 12 months).  The cognitive therapist also came to to a screening and evaluation 2 times.  I am very thankful that I decided to do this even though many people were telling me it was no big deal and I should not be worried, that he would catch up eventually, lots of kids never crawl, go straight to walking, etc.  I think he would not have progressed like he did without this help.  Mostly it was me being educated and doing the exercises, of course, not the several visits from the therapist, but nonetheless I'm really glad I did this.  I stay home with him and only have one, so of course scheduling the appointments was easier than if I was working, but I offer this as something to consider if you continue to be concerned.

I hope you don't mind my offering this suggestion, and please consider it in the context of you who know your son the best.  He may also very well just have different ways of learning.


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KL
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« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2009, 04:14:52 AM »

Yep, key is to show him stuff that he's already interested in, or likely to be interested in.  Cars, dinosaurs, etc.

Since you have LR, have you tried showing him all the different dinosaur downloads that's available?  You could mix is with other lessons in between and show the ones he really likes as a reward.

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VictoriaC
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« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2009, 10:53:48 AM »

Dear everyone,

Thank you for all your valuable tips and advice. I'll certainly try every tip given.

For your information, before I had the chance to see all your wonderful insights, I took my son to attend a trial lesson at Heguru this morning ( a newly opened right + left brain education/ enrichment centre ) . I was thinking if Shichida and Tweedlewink are not suitable for him, I'll try him out with Heguru.

The result? No luck!

He couldnt sit for more than 3 minutes. Similar to Shichida, there are some 40 over activities in an hour's lesson comprising image training, eye training, manual rapid flashing of cards, ESP training, memory linking exercises, photographic memory exercise and DVD rapid flash. Through out the lesson he was fussing, refused to participate in most of the activities. We had to leave before the class ended.

After the class was over, I had a quick chat with the sensei in hope that she could shed some light and share some techniques. She was quick to note that my son responded ( or rather not responded but stopped his fussing) whenever the sensei did:
 
1. rapid flashing of cards manually ( similar to Doman method but I have never been able to flash that fast though I've been practicing for months now),
2. played the rapid flash cards on DVD ( this is a recorded manual flashing of cards done in Japan in the Japanese language. The speed in which it is done is simply unbelievable and I couldnt hear a single word clearly)
3. as well as 1 counting activity with song.

In her own words I quote" your son is interested in fast movements and speed captures his attention". She then added that sometimes it could be the parent's expectation, though communicated unconsciously, that stresses the child up.

I will seriously think about that and work on creating a relaxing learning environment. We normally kiss, hug and clap after each activity done at home. I thought my kids are not stressed, and I've always resisted the temptation to test them just to see if we're on the right track. I guess I'm stressed up and they, especially my son, senses it i guess.


KL, Daddude and Mother of Faith, you're right. I should concentrate on showing my son things he likes and enjoys looking at. Come to think of it, I have noticed that he seemed particularly interested whenever I showed him the powerpoint presentation I made for them on Phonics. He even requested for it every time I showed him LR. I guess it's because for the alphabet D I've attached the photo of Daddy with mummy standing beside smiling silly, the alphabet M, I have my photo on, the alphabet G with grandma's photo, the alphabet N with a photo of my son ( Nicky)  riding a colourful car and O ( Olivia) with my daughter's photo.Come to think of it, my son has tried to tell me what he wants to see and yet i've been too distracted to take the cue seriously. Gotta be more observant.

Quiet Cricket, thank you for bring my attention on the subject of autism, screening and checking. I'll certainly monitor my son's response and progress closely, and seek professional advice on this matter if things do not improve in the near future. I'll not rule out the possibility that my son could be ADD inclined as well.

Mother of faith, it's really kind of you to offer help in sending me materials you've prepared. I'm truly grateful.



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« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2009, 03:58:38 PM »

Hi Victoria, my son used to be like your son when he was your son's age. I was very worried, and an expert shares this with me; "No matter how good are the enrichments programs, do bare in mind, you are your child only expert, pls follow his pace and learning interest". I would like to share my own experience with you, I was feeling guilty because I had not given him any stimulation during his 1st year why bcoz need to take care of my mom who was bedridden at that time...who passed away 2 years ago. Now my son is 3 yo. So, when he reached 2 yo I send him to Shichida, then lately Tweedlewink. WE as parents we wants our child to be smart, achieve their highest potential...etc, but do you realise that enrolling them to too many program (espcially the same type of program) might indirectly overstimulate them. Dont be worry at most time, if you are feeling he wont be learning, you are actually transferring this to him, he can sense it. Try to do more activities with him. Actually an hour a day is more than enough. Tough he might not be listening, he is learning through hearing maybe he is like my son, kinesthetic. AM sorry to say this...but hope you will try to observe this...because alot of the moms in shichida shared this with me. A child who will sits down and looks at flashcards and participates in every single game dont mean that they absorbs every single thing that was taught. Sometimes a kid who doesnt pay attention in a class did better...Just like your girl's case, how do you know that she is a keen laerner..is it just because she sits still and look and listen....???? Here is where the expertise comes in....you are her mom, you know her better than anyone else..have confident in yourself...Relax yourself before your carry out any activities with them.
I think you should try not to enrol your girl and boy at the same class, let your boy get to know more new friends and give him chance to socialise with others besides of his twin sister.
I feels montessori curriculum suits your child. Maybe you can enrol him into a montessori curriculum (learn at their own pace). Anyway, maybe you should think positively, a future leader normally doesnt like to be control....he has his own thinking....try to talk to your child, it is alright if he really doesnt want to join this type of enrichment programs..if you are firm and you whats him to join, do give him time to change. Lots of moms in our class dont like us because my son was too active, tough am feeling bad about it, I always tell myself nvm, my patient pays off. And now, at 3 yo I really can see the differences. I would like you to know, we will always try our best to follow the sensei instructions but as I said earlier you are his expert, just let him choose what/which part he wants to participate. Just like in Shichida, last time I dont understand him well enough, I was like you, why he is not learning, dont look at dot cards..etc...then I realise he chose the activities he wants to do in the centre.

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« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2009, 09:11:50 PM »

I think your biggest problem is that you have fraternal twins - girls and boys are very very different and it is incredibly hard not to compare especially when they are twins and the same age. The question then becomes - do you want them to be the same? Obviously you want them to have a good education and do well and so on. And you are trying many methods which is great and I very much doubt that you expect them to be exactly the same, but are you able to let go of your expectations for your son for a short while?

What works for your daughter will probably never work for your son - I say this because I am also a fraternal twin and have a brother. We were never alike and yet we spent an enormous amount of time together - basically we suited each other because we were so different. My brother learnt more auditorially and I learnt more visually. My mother managed to teach him to spell the numbers (one - ten) when she heard me singing a song about how to spell "eight" - he had never been taught using mostly hearing and it worked well for him. Your son probably learns in a very different way to your daughter, his interests are different and his strengths and weaknesses are different. I remember crossing out "the twins birthday" written in my mothers diary when I was about 7 and replacing it with our names. They say it is easier with boy-girl twins to treat them differently, and yes, it probably is to some extent, but there will always be a "the twins" attitude to some extent.

Use what he likes to teach him - play games with the cars, teach him about movement and different forms of transport. You don't have to flash cards at hiom - maybe its the cards themselves that he doesn't like
 Someone told me that they read a book called "Raising boys" recently and that it taught them a lot about men too - maybe try it - while it has little to do with education it may give you some ideas on how to handle your son and from there how to educate him.

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