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For 100 points… What is education?

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Ever feel like you are playing a game with the odds totally stacked against you?

Education for 100 points? “What age can your child start school?”

Did you say 5? No sorry, you may not start until you have already turned 6.

Education for 200 points? “Would it be possible to contact a school and discuss it?”

I am sorry. Do you seriously think they will want to take the disruptive always up to mischief child into a classroom?

Education for….

I am so disappointed, disgusted, and disillusioned that, time again and again misinformation, misconception, misinterpretation, and misrepresentation, lead to a misunderstanding of some children.

I am tired of no one listening and everybody talking! I am tired of trying to explain:

  • If you challenge him he settles to the task.
  • He only causes issues when he is bored!
  • He needs movement to process his world!
  • He is not being defiant!
  • He will quote you back verbatim for hours on end if you just… Let! Him! Move!”

I am now convinced talking to a brick wall would be easier!  Disillusioned does not even begin to cover my disappointment in educators and the system they have created.  Only 20pages on learning difficulties (LD) in the 600page educational psychology textbook for teachers does not help teachers understand anything but standard kids.  Very few have heard of twice exceptional… let alone Gifted… and learning difficulties including dyslexia….

Teacher: “Isn’t Gifted, genius? He is really not that smart!”

“Isn’t dyslexia just an excuse to be lazy?”

Ok, time for a deep breathe! Smile! Remember to think calming thoughts before you talk and… don’t scream at anyone!  You can not change ‘rude and ignorant’ so do not lower yourself to their level! Use new mantra: “Educate them! Educate them!” Obviously they think they know best! No that thought is not allowed! “Educate them!”

Thankfully, my crazy family had a solution to my as yet to occur chaos! My father’s infuriating mantra and answer to every impossible situation… “There is no such word as can’t!” and my mother’s response to my complaints about my father’s never-changing advice was “Just go and do something useful! Better still go and work out a different way to sort out your problem!” Which obviously left to me walking away grumbling “Thanks for nothing, Mum!”

Well, thanks for something very important, Mum! The education system may not be able to educate my impossible child, but I can!

Yes, that’s right! I can! Although, I will attempt to politely correct your misunderstanding and misconception and a whole bunch of other “mis-” that is involved with “dys-” (dyslexia, dysgraphia, dyspraxia…) and I just need to let it go!

Me: “I said Twice-Exceptional! That is Gifted with a learning difficulty.  In my son’s case dysgraphia is our super power!  That’s mother speak for ‘this is a strength we need to learn to utilize’. Now we are on the same page, right?.

When I said “gifted” you thought I meant “prodigy”. I did not! I meant he is an asynchronously challenged child. His brain works differently.”

Are you confused yet? Good! So am I!  Hopefully we might achieve something useful yet!

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Questions related to Learning Difficulties…

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Handedness? Does switching a child from left to right handed in kindergarten look like dyslexia?

Especially for English speaking kids in western countries?

Does more inside computer games less outside climbing monkey bars mean that western kids are more likely to end up with a SLD diagnosis rather than a learning delay due to the brain development/maturity ages of kids brains being Female 6 / male 8. So less physical activity to teach brains to work with limbs… Is it learning delay or dyslexia? How do we know for sure?

More kids are in extra learning for reading etc classes but regularly half the class hit 8 yo and no longer have issues. Many stories of teachers “Boys catch up in grade 3”. They have however never learnt a significant part of K-2 foundations. :/ Also never had a DSM5 categorised learning difficulty either.

Your thoughts?

Please share below.

Adventuring around the world… in your home city!

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I used to dream of travelling the world but working long hours the last thing I wanted to do when I had a holiday was leave home.

Then I learnt, all I need to do, to go adventuring was to chat to people in my own city of Sydney, Australia!

I had recently moved to Sydney so I was not yet very familiar with my surroundings. At a meeting one day my friend with Chinese ancestory said to our group, “Next week is the beginning of the Chinese New Year! I want to take you to see the Chinese New Year parade, then there will be the dragon boat races and traditional Chinese food for New Year at a restuarant!” So, began my travels around the world in my own city!

Another friend took us all to a traditional Turkish restaurant for her birthday. It was during a festival time for Turkey so they had displays of traditional dances and music at the restaurant.

However, my favourite to date was being taken by a friend from college to her favourite Indian restaurant. This was like stepping into another place in time. The tables were all low to sit at either on the floor or in low chairs, with amazing coloured throw rugs adorning the floor and walls and beautifully coloured cushions. And not to forget the fabulous lunch, but that room and dress of the waiters and waitress I will remember forever!

When my work colleagues learnt of my fascination with all things multicultural, languages and especially other cultures food my department boss declared every fourth Friday “Bring a traditional meal to share to work” day. Our department had six people and five different cultures of origin. Funnily enough after our first traditional meal day all the office employees joined in. I discovered food from India, Australia, Lebanon, Vietnam, Thailand, Bangladesh, China, Macedonia, Malta, Italy, and the Mediterranean. We commissioned our Turkish colleague with the job of bringing sweets!

When you reside outside your country of origin festival adventures are a great way to bring your culture into your children’s lives. I have been reading and researching about keeping all family cultures and traditions known to your children when you reside outside your families’ country of origin. In Aditi Wardhan Singh’s book, “Strong Roots Have No Fear: Empowering Children To Thrive In A Multicultural World With Intuitive Parenting” I finally found a reflection of our parenting goals.

I married into another culture. My children are bicultural, biliterate, bilingual and love both cultures food and festivals.

It is a struggle, but everyday we take steps to encourage our children to have adventures in our home languages. We enjoy attending festivals in our city and sharing our home cultures with other family members and friends.

Disparity in gifted education…

Curious…

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This week I am reading Piaget’s theories on child development in education (amongst other things his main study is development psychology)…

Whilst many of his theories have been proved/disproved accordingly I wonder if the basis of disparity in gifted education and particularly profoundly gifted kids education all arises from his belief that a child under 6 is incapable of the cognitive processes usually associated with 7-11 year olds?

It was written as a statement of fact. I am wondering… Whilst his other theories have been tested and adjusted accordingly, this statement appears to sit in the midst of the abyss unchallenged! Or as yet I can find no challenge for it. :/

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Let’s Learn Japanese – Introduction! こんにちは。 السلام عليكم. Hello!

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Learning while laughing” is our homeschool motto!

So, here is the twist… We are going to learn Japanese from Arabic!  We are attempting to prove to ourselves we are really a biliterate household! See… that’s where much laughing will come in. LOL 💕🙈

In case you were hoping for English, I will share that first – follow the link to these “Learn Japanese Adventure” pages in English to help learn Japanese from English:  https://www.learn-japanese-adventure.com/japanese-lessons.html.

NHK World has the most amazing information (the page is in many languages not just English and Arabic) for learning about Japan and speaking Japanese.

I have been searching for several years for a good learn Japanese from Arabic for a friend of mine – I am so excited!

Did I mention NHK World is a famous TV channel with beautiful documentaries about Japan. I have just discovered their radio programs so excitement all around here today!!!

And icing on the cake for me, is the easy to teach letter symbols charts complete with sounds (shown in Romaji – English script so you can sound out the symbol) and how to write chart . It has both  Hiragana and Katakana. https://www.nhk.or.jp/lesson/en/easyjapanese/lesson/1.html 

 

!! هيا نبدأ

Part 1 – Coming soon – Arabic sounds for Japanese Hiragana and Katakana. ❤

For example:

نطق عربي /  هيراغانا /  Romaji روماج

あ / أ / a

い / ي / i

 

Thoughts… Bilingualism… Dyslexia…

Further investigation is raising some very interesting topics! 💕

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Food for thought… Dyslexia…

My son can hear Arabic sounds. This means he struggles less in Arabic than in English.

Arabic is picture based language so it always appears the same or with the bottom dropped but the main part of the letter never changes. It does however read from right-to-left not left-to-right. No upper or lower case. 28 letters plus 10 extra variations but they have rules that are not regularly broken.

For example an Arabic /b/ looks like ب. In the beginning middle and end joining 3 /b/ look like this ببب. (Arabic reads from right to left so the final letter is on the left and is always a complete letter.)

In English B at the beginning of a sentence is B, but at the beginning of a word in the middle of a sentence is b and in the middle/end is b. So… yes. We…

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Bookmarks for Summer learning

Book mark or place mat. Laminate and use a thin white board marker to trace the letters. ❤
Set 1 – Mostly Arabic 💕 Chinese numbers 1-10 too!
Set 2 – Alphabet: Greek, Arabic, English, French 🎉
That should keep my kids amused for 5minutes… at least!

Sumeiya's Arabic Hub - واحة سمية لتعلم العربية

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I thought this could be a fun way to keep up with our numbers and reading for the summer.  We made some bookmarks. Either print on card or paper and laminate.

Happy Learning!

Download a copy of our bookmarks here:  sumeiyasarabichub bookmark

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Download a copy of our alphabets bookmarks here:  sumeiyasarabichub bookmark 3

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Homework Card Game

Keeping kids out of mischief! Games are fun! ❤

Sumeiya's Arabic Hub - واحة سمية لتعلم العربية

homework cardsTime to make homework fun!

Help keep your child with Learning Difficulties on track and having fun whilst doing homework.

What you will need:

  • Timer
  • Print our fun cards, here:  study cards
  • Laminate or print on card
  • Cut up cards
  • Place cards into a fishing dish… (bowl)
  • Choose one at a time for the next task.

Each task is to take no more than 8-10 minutes otherwise kids loose interest fast.

Set your timer and Go!

Download your copy here:  study cards

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How Parents Can Better Handle Meltdowns or Tantrums in Public

Meltdown vs Tantrum

We have all been there at some point. This itsy bitsy person that you love so much and are responsible for is suddenly carrying on in a fashion so alien, totally inconsolable, lying on the floor crying with arms thrown about creating the biggest tantrum you have ever seen. Once you add standing in the middle of the shopping centre with half the world, or so it seems, staring or trying not to stare or send recriminating looks… I felt so humiliated! If only the floor would open!

Well, imagine my surprise when… a stranger stepped out of the crowd to help me. A stranger… let’s think on that for a minute!

A life changing event was to follow! This amazing lady who explained “This is what a meltdown looks like!”

  • This was not me loosing my grip on parenting!
  • This was not something either of us could control!
  • This was time to learn how to create a “safety zone” in the middle of chaos!
  • This was time to acknowledge that this IS NOT a tantrum!

I share my journey here, with RaisingWorldChildren.com:

How Parents Can Better Handle Meltdowns or Tantrums in Public