Thursday, March 4, 2010

Passion Balanced with Practical

Let me begin by saying my oldest daughter is so much like me. So much. Yet, there's an odd twist (thanks hubby!) making raising her complex and draining. I think all kids are complex, and I know my mom would say I was complex and draining, too, so I don't kid myself into thinking I have some special case. Still...

Jackie LOVES reading and always has her nose in a book. I've encouraged it, because it's a love I want to pass to all my children (Reagan - 2nd grade - will ONLY read Archie Books or graphic novels right now). She has absorbed book after book. If she's interested in reading it, I buy it and then I research anything remotely like it and buy that, too. She read all the Lightening Thief and now is on Book 5 of the 39 Clues. I've also bought her Madeleine L'Engle's Wrinkle in Time to read next (as well as the 2nd book in that series). But, now, I've created a monster. Jackie can tell you any god or goddess... ask her the god of the sea, she's quick to reply Poseidon. Easy one I know, but you can't stump her... god of wine... Dionysus. Freaky. Ask her anything about horses... she knows. Actually the reason I started finding serial books for her is because all she ever brought home from the library 1st-3rd grade were animal books encyclopedia style and it was driving me crazy.

Again, I am thrilled she loves to read and even how absorbed she gets in things she does like. Unfortunately, Mythology and Animal Facts are not "subjects" in elementary school. Try to get the child to remember that perimeter means adding up all the sides while area is multiplying 2 sides and she has to be retaught EVERY SINGLE DAY! I'd love to sit back and say it doesn't matter... let her love what she loves. But, practically, it DOES matter. And, for as much as she loves reading, she doesn't want to be bothered with regurgitating facts from her books into any kind of writing piece. Why do that? You can read the book as easily as she can.

I'd say I was pulling my hair out, but instead it just gets grayer and grayer. (Thanks Stacy at LaVie for helping me there!) I am a freak of nature (thus the twist I eluded to earlier)... I loved reading and writing in school but also did really well and liked math. Writing and reading fulfilled my need for escape, my creative side. Math used my practical side... it never changed. It was a constant. I never needed to worry because there was a process, a formula. Safety in numbers meant a whole different thing to me.

I don't want in ANY way to diminish Jackie's passion for things. I love that she is passionate. I just need to find a loving, motherly way to teach her that other things have value, too, even if you aren't passionate about them. I HATED history and science in school, but I knew I needed to study and perform, and I did. (Note: I love historical fiction - I just need a hook. I think I just had very mundane history teachers.)

I'll keep searching for the way to Jackie's practical side. I know it's buried somewhere. After all, she's just TOO much like her Mama for it not to be in there.


Dana & Keith Newbrough said...

I don't have a great answer and am glad I have older sisters with older kids going through this stuff first, so that I can learn from you. But, I do think that you can incorporate her two passions. Much of mythology (their calendars, cycles, even their powers or even use math problems utilizing characters she loves) are related to numerology and math. Try to find ways to tie in her interests with the practical. Once she sees the connection, she might be more willing to enjoy things like math. More than likely she is just avoiding things like math because it isn't as easy for fear what isn't easy.

Bach said...

I know you are right. I love her passion, so I definitely want to use it to her advantage versus trying to squelch it.

I think you have created a blogging monster. Love you!

sex scenes at starbucks said...

Alex struggles in school but is so great at other things, like drums, verbal skills, and reading).He's capable; he simply fails to try. It's tough to find the thing that motivates him. (It's not rewards, that's for sure, which are what teachers want it to be.) It comes from within.

I think some people are literally smarter and more focused on one thing than they are well-rounded. That's tough to justify with reality, isn't it?