Rounding Angles

I wanted to add this commentary to my previous post about teaching Robert to write and draw but after thinking it over, I decided to add this short post instead. It took us, his teachers and me, a lot of time to deal with the problem I described below, so it might warrant a separate post.
When Robert was very young (4-6 years old), he was unable to draw any picture with angles. Squares and triangles were “rounded” in such a way that they resembled deformed circles and not the polygons they were. Robert couldn’t stop at the polygons vertices even for a nano second. In smooth, continuous motion he slid to the next side leaving the curve where the vertex should be.
I thought about a few remedies to address that.
One was to ask Robert to raise his hand after completing each single segment as this movement assured that he stopped. Robert used this approach when he was asked, for instance, to draw a house.
Another one was to suggest to Robert to begin with placing all the vertices on paper and then connecting them. When Robert saw those black end-points, he considered them his cues to stop and start anew with a next side of a polygon.
It took long time and many trails for Robert to master that skill.
Moreover, although he doesn’t need to use it to draw triangles or square, he still uses it to “plan” other drawings.
Lately, for instance, he learned to place five dots in a way that helps him to draw a five sided star. Quite an achievement for him. He also places appropriate number of dots on a circle to draw a hexagon, pentagon, or octagon.
When he was learning cursive writing, he encountered most difficulties while writing lowercase “s” as it required drawing slant segment (drawing aslant line is problem in itself) and then turning it into a curve at the top of the letter. Again, Robert tended to “round” that corner. He still does this, if he is not reminded not to do so.

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