A family's story

Our Little Math-stermind

One of Tate’s “splinter skills”, or something he is really good at, is numbers. The kid loves numbers…especially the number 8. We like to call it “Tate o’clock” at our house because he gets so excited when the clocks read 8:00.

The math-sense is strong in this one. He likes to count…and gets pretty far before mixing up numbers. He can do connect the dots like a pro (hmm, do they offer scholarships for that?), he understands the basics of what number is bigger and what number is smaller. He is improving when asked about things “altogether” or “how many”. He loves games on the Xoom where he can count…aaannnndd, one of his fave shows is Team Umizoomi! He can’t figure out how to put his underwear on properly, but he has mastered an Umizoomi game on the “puter”. Go figure!

He loves writing numbers. When I suggest practicing the letter of the week, he bargains to write numbers instead. You can barely read his name on papers (his a’s and e’s look scarily similar to big boulders), but all of his numbers are completely legible. Stink!

This morning I had him finish some writing homework. (He has sufficiently mastered the letter “I”…both capital and lowercase.) After about a minute he looked up and declared, “I need to do my math homework now.” Umm, he didn’t have any….but who am I to deny my kid some fun. So, I pulled his preschool workbook down. He tired of tracing numbers, so he did a dot-to-dot. He nailed it! Then he talked about which numbers were bigger than others. He also did some matching.

Let me explain our unbridled joy… First, to hear that our kid, who has so many deficiencies is “at level” with something, well, whoo-frickin’-hooo! Second, we have spent the better part of the last 3 years fighting with Jake to absorb any shred of math sense. It is painful…especially considering that Hubz is an engineer, and I can hold my own when it comes to computation. Tate gives us a glimmer of hope that our math abilities aren’t going to skip a generation!! Yay!

Editor’s Note: On Wednesday as Tate came down from the height of his tantrum, he recited– VERBATIM– the 10 minute math lesson Hubz had tried to impart on Jake the night before. He had it word for word. I think he was able to pay attention because the content, numbers, intrigues him. Can you use numbers and steel-trap memory to teach social skills??I need to research that.

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