Tuesday, December 22, 2015

the tablet, rewarding for reading, and unschooling Hebrew reading

So Elazar just came over to me and asked me to do another line of Shema so that he can earn another hour of tablet.  He's only played on it for a few hours and he mentioned that it's already getting a bit boring because all the great games he was anticipating playing only have a few levels for free and it turns out he'll need to spend more money.  He also was quite upset about having to earn it for a Siyum when he is paying for it with his own money.  He brought up "Ploni Almoni" whose mother bought him a tablet AND gave it to him for nothing.  I valiantly tried to hold off but eventually the words "every family has different rules" and "when you are grown up you will make the rules for your household" came out of my mouth.

So as he is reading through his line in Shema, I started thinking about unschooling reading again.  It was an excruciating 5 minutes.  He is improving, he is remembering the letters and nekudos better, he's blending beautifully, etc.

As I look back at my blog posts about reading Hebrew, I hilariously discover that I have this same question every year at about this time.  Two years ago, Elazar learned the nekudos ridiculously quickly and efficiently.  I am just about positive (scary scary scary unschooling!) that he will learn to read Hebrew fluently in about a week when he wants to.  So why am I hocking him?  Why am I nudging a reluctant organism to do things his brain doesn't really want to do, when if I leave it alone, he will do it with joy and alacrity and it will take him a fraction of the time?

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