I just read Elizabeth's post http://grhomeschooling.blogspot.com/2010/11/principles-of-teaching-tiny-children.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+LifeWithAKindergartnergentleRevolutionHomeschooling+(Life+with+a+Kindergartner+(Gentle+Revolution+Homeschooling)) about the principles of teaching tiny children.
It's amazing how babies and toddlers absorb knowledge through everything around them if that knowledge is presented in joyful way.
Few posts ago I wrote about my science corner and the book I created about gourds.
Yesterday, I just grabbed that book and without any thinking I asked Eaton: What is gourd native to, Eaton? He politely said: Africa. I couldn't believe he answered that question.
He didn't look in that book at that time, he was busy playing with his dump trucks. And honestly he read that book maybe 4 times so far. Then I asked him what "hollow" means (the adjective I introduced in the book) and he looked at me with his smiling face like "OOO I know that answer" and he said to me: "hollow means empty".
I shouldn't be surprised that Eaton answered those questions correctly but still it is amazing to me how they learn so quickly. And I'm proud of him for being that good student of early learning.
About two weeks ago (Eaton is still 22 months) I started another method of reading books to Eaton.
When I read to him I don't finish the sentence. Usually, I stop reading when there is one or two words left at the end of the sentence and allow Eaton to finish it for me.
That way I see that Eaton is paying attention to what is read. Also, I ask questions about the book and we both participate in the story. Most of the time Eaton answers with a simple YES or NO and that is OK. Then, I try to answer more using different words.
I use that method only when Eaton is fully awake and I know he can participate in reading.
Here is the video of one of these sessions. It's hard to hold a book, point to a word and hold a camera in another hand but Eaton didn't mind me doing it this time :)