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Author Topic: competing with with siblings - a great motivator  (Read 7610 times)
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akalori
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« on: April 27, 2009, 03:20:02 AM »

I have a 6 yr old son with a learning disability.  Then, on the other spectrum, is my 2 yr old daughter who learns intuitively.  I started YBCR with my 2 yr old daughter and she is just recognizing a few words.  Now suddenly my son has become a little scholar.  Instead of procrastinating and begging to play now and do sight words later, he has decided that it is better to practice his sight words 2x daily.  In the beginning I worried about his self esteem.   Now I'm thinking this competition is helpful because perhaps he will catch up to his peers quicker.  I read a study about very poor outcomes for children who aren't reading on grade level by 3rd grade.  So it is my goal to work as hard as possible with him now.  Besides if he does catch up, he will probably not even remember the extra work he did in kindergarten.  But if he doesn't catch he will eventually compare himself to his peers and feel inadequate.

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KL
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« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2009, 04:10:20 PM »

Yes, a little friendly competition now and again can often be helpful!

Even without an elder (or younger) sibling, sometimes, I would try to engineer some form of competition between me and Felicity, and she'd always be so much more enthusiastic in doing the thing cos she wants to 'beat Daddy'!

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staceycanada
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« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2009, 04:13:02 PM »

A little healthy competition is great!

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« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2009, 04:56:24 PM »

I agree with this too.  Competition is really great to bring up kids, but we need to ensure it's healthy competition.  Another example of good competition is to get your kids to play jigsaw puzzle and compete to finish it first.

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wintermommy
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« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2009, 05:37:00 PM »

Hi KL! Thats a good idea, my son doesnt have sibling so I should engineer some competition for my son. I have 5 siblings and I grew up competing which made me tough. I want my son to become competetive too!

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KL
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« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2009, 02:35:25 AM »

Just remember to always emphasize that it's OK to lose, or not to be the first, so long as they've tried their best.  Tell them that so long as they've tried their best, they're always "no. 1" in our eyes!

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akalori
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« Reply #6 on: June 21, 2009, 11:35:04 PM »

My kids are far enough apart in ages ( 2 yrs + 6 yrs old) that the competition is about trying the hardest (not actual results).  So I ask the children who wants to work on their sight words first today, or be Mommy's helper today, or put away toys for Mommy.  And sometimes (when I'm lucky) they fight over the opportunity to impress me.  Lately the elder one isn't always so eager to please me - he's getting savy to Mommy's tricks. 

Also my son understands that she is memorizing the shape of words whereas he is actually learning to sound out new words - totally different.  He watched the YBCR commercial with me so he understands that his sister is in that unique language learning window.  He knows I had no idea that babies could read until I saw a YBCR commercial about 4 months ago.  I told him that if I had known better I would have taught him to read in babyhood.  He actually makes suggestions of other new things we should teach Sarah while she is in this unique learning window.  Also I have explained that his brain is still more plastic than mine and more capable of amazing feats of learning.  So we also talk about what things he wants to learn.  At the moment, he wants to learn about science so he has special projects that are too complex for the toddler.  Just last night, we made a motorized car using batteries, motor, K'nex, tape, and rubber bands.  When he was assessed for school readiness, despite being behind in phonics by 2 yrs and math by 1 yr, he was actually ahead in science by 6 months.  It may not sound like much but we were very proud because we try hard not to refuse even his wildest ideas for science experiments.  Instead we try to guide it to something more plausible then get right down to the business of doing it.  A robot that can clean his room becomes first a motorized car with the plan of building up to a robot as we get more skilled.  We are always conscious of and concerned with building his self-esteem.

But it is a good point, KL, I wouldn't want any child to grow up feeling inferior or inadequate due to competition with their siblings.   

Lori

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