Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Whole Lotta Writing Going On

I never thought I'd be saying this but the kiddo is enjoying blogging very much these days. Oh I know it's just a passing fancy. Totally not kidding myself there. But I'm so glad it's happening and trying so hard not to look like I think it's a big deal. Why? Well, the quickest way around here to bring a passing fancy to an end is to make a big deal out of it!

I started his blog for him when he was five. We called it The Amazing Adventures of Lightning Dash because he really loved the character Dash from The Incredibles. I would ask him if he wanted to say anything and he'd dictate it to me and I'd type the post for him. We'd choose images together but I'd do all the other stuff, the copying, pasting, publishing etc. For a while, it was a wonderful novelty for him to know that something he'd learned about and dictated to me was on the world wide web for everyone to see. Then, the novelty wore off. Although we updated it now and then, we basically let the blog die for a while.

Last year, I suggested he write reviews for some of the books he reads. I gave him a choice to either hand-write them (which I knew wouldn't be completed) or to dictate them to me and I'd write them for him. After some discussion, we decided to try to resurrect the blog for book reviews. He seemed keen for a bit but it was obviously an effort. He might type a line or two but would often be frustrated by the slow pace. Instead of forcing him to go on, I volunteered again to be his scribe. It did upset me at times that he was struggling to type but I tried to be logical and remind myself that I wasn't typing when I was eight either. Over-focusing on a very frustrating activity has never been productive around here.

This year, we're trying another resurrection, under the name Math and Other Adventures. After the first two entries for the year, kiddo decided he wanted to type his own posts (Wooooohoooo!) and has been doing so every few days now. Of all things, he is motivated by his Google search ranking! When he first googled it, it wasn't even in the top 10. Google Math and Other Adventures now and it's there at 4th place. He wants it to be in first place. And I'd always thought this child will never be competitive. Who knew?

When I was a curriculum junkie, it pained me that we couldn't entice him to try a typing curriculum. That we quickly abandon every writing curriculum we begin. That we can't stick to a grammar program. I overcame the junkie bit but as a mom who likes to write, it did trouble me very much that my son hated writing.

I quickly assumed that this child will never write anything. I've despaired on many a homeschooling forum that my child is a reluctant and resistant writer.

I've wondered which teeth I'd have to pull to help him write his college application essays.

Ha! Today, he told me he really likes writing.

Never Say Never.


  1. Oh this is fantastic news! And even if he does lose interest, he knows (and you, too) that deep inside he has the ability if he chooses to use it. That's valuable by itself, in my opinion.

    I'm glad you detailed his issues with his blog. My oldest has sort of lost interest in his blog, and in my free moments (HA!), I'm quietly brainstorming ways that might help him discover a way to make it interesting for himself. Still, it's nice to know that interest can wane and resurrect.

    If you do want a fun way for your son to learn typing, I have a free game that my boys love. You have to retype a word quickly as it falls. My boys love it and don't think of it as practicing typing at all.

  2. Yes, never say never. Sometimes it's a matter of putting something away for a while, then come back to it again when the child has developed enough interest/maturity/motor skills/patience to give it another go.

    Also, we have a similar trend here about "the quickest way around here to bring a passing fancy to an end is to make a big deal out of it!" What's that about with these kids?!

  3. I remember the Amazing Adventures of Lightning Dash!

    See, you just have to have faith - he just needed to find a reason that appealed to him to do it! Plus his typing has probably improved significantly and its not as hard for him anymore.

    Off to check out his blog!

  4. Good one! I just googled 'Math and Other Adventures' and it WAS at number ONE. Congrats to Dash :)

    After I check out Z-Type tomorrow I might leave him a comment.

  5. Thanks guys! I'm so glad he's doing this. :) Butterfly, you are so thoughtful and that would really make his day. :) Thanks so much for thinking of it!


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