Interventions

The boys need an intervention.  A reading intervention, to be precise. Ezra, who has amazing comprehension skills, can’t decode or spell to save his life. Zach, who started reading well at three and could read Harry Potter IN SPANISH by five, doesn’t really understand what he is reading.  Oy! At last week’s IEP meeting for [Read More...]

Counting On It

Poor Jeff.  He was born in California during the 50s, which means that he learned to read and to do arithmetic during the 60s.  I don’t know if the reason he never received explicit phonics instruction was because his teachers were a couple decades ahead of the whole language craze or if everyone was just [Read More...]

Check Mate

After my first thoughts on the Tiger Mom controversy, I haven’t had much to say. But today I chaperoned our chess club‘s first trip to a US Chess Federation tournament.  And all of my theoretical appreciation for any parenting style that puts pressure on kids to “win” went out the window.  In its place is [Read More...]

An Idiom Quiz

Two books about idioms arrived today.  The boys are calling them joke books and I can see why.  Each books has great illustrations showing what the idiom would look like if you took it literally.  As you might imagine, some of the drawings are absurd in a way that delights 7 and 8 year old boys. All [Read More...]

Phone Home

Jeff forgot to call his mom on Mother’s Day. Who does that? I should have felt worse for his mother, whose ungrateful son probably broke her heart. But I had more selfish concerns when I found out about his transgression. I wondered how we were ever going to raise boys who invite us to move [Read More...]

Literally

Today’s post is “hot off the presses.” If you understand what that means, then you have interpreted an idiom. Idioms are expressions which have meanings other than their literal meaning.  Most people learn the non-literal meanings of idioms as they grow up by paying attention to social contexts and emotional clues. But lots of people [Read More...]

When I Grow Up

  “Nafisa, do you like history?” Zach asked a fourteen year old friend who was here tonight. “I do like history.” “Then you are going to LOVE the volcano video.” “Zach, honey,” I jump in, “that video isn’t about history.” “But it has a lot of historical stuff in it.” “Well, history, as a subject [Read More...]


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