Learning to Listen

January 29, 2015

Today Robert completed Part B of Reasoning and Writing.  It was the second time around.  His grasp on most of the presented concepts seemed much more solid.  Robert and I learned a lot from this curriculum. I have already written many times how this curriculum helped Robert to learn to think by very thoughtful introduction of many concepts.

The most important benefit, however, was that I learned to read to Robert and Robert learned to listen.

Robert learned to read many years before he learned to listen.  He could decipher words when he was five years old.  He could match words to pictures, he could decode words on the 3-4 grade level.  But he didn’t want to listen to anybody reading or telling him a story.  When my husband or I tried to read to him in his bed, he kept taking book from us, read it by himself, and quickly be done with all of that. It is impossible to know what he gained from such approach.

When I first looked at Part A of Reasoning and Writing, I was sure it would be extremely difficult, if not entirely impossible, to keep Robert listening as I read rather long parts of stories included in the Instruction Book.  That had never happened before. But I jumped head first following directions as closely as possible.  Robert survived at his chair till the end of my reading. Of course, there were intervals when I asked questions or made comments the Instruction Book told me to.  I am not sure wow much he understood from that first reading, but as the time went by, there  were new opportunities to recount the stories and/or read them again. There were stories about Paul who painted everything pink or purple, Roger who kept leaving his hat in one place only to find it somewhere else, about Bragging Rats who always argued, Robot named Bleep whose tendency to move screws in his head kept resulting in one or another kind of speech impairment.  The last story was about Queen of Garbo who didn’t want to listen but learned any way.  Except she learned so-called “hard way.”  I read four parts of the story over Sunday and Monday.  And Robert listened. He listened,  He followed Queen’s steps up the south side of the mountain and down the mountain on its east side.  He listened as I read about Saint Bernard’s coming to the rescue of the Queen and her greyhounds. He listened.

I am not sure how much he learned.  I stopped reading a few times to comment or ask Robert questions that would clarify the understanding.  I repeated some of the sections.  We looked at the drawing of Queen’s footprints in the workbook.  We saw how Saint Bernard’s were lowered down the ledge with the help of a stake and a rope. He listened.

Sadly, Part C of Reasoning and Writing  doesn’t contain any stories.  It focuses on different skills – mainly on writing.  (Some of those skills were already introduced in the part B).  But as I kept reading to Robert I also kept learning how to read to him.  I will go on with reading, even if Robert can read by himself.


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1 Comment

  1. Learning to Listen 2 | krymarh

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