Ideas: Perfectionsts in ECC

Post Reply
rawbanana
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 1:22 pm
Location: Nebraska

Ideas: Perfectionsts in ECC

Unread post by rawbanana » Wed Jul 07, 2010 9:24 am

ECC week 1- having issues

Ok, so we started ECC this week and *I* LOOOOVE it.

However, my 8yr old daughter gets VERY frustrated (to the point of tears) if she cant get something right or doesnt COMPLETELY understand so that it makes sense to HER.

Example 1: We did the 7 country maps and I TOLD her before we started, 'you may not know any of these and that's ok, we are just trying to see how much we MIGHT know'. It took her and her sister (ages 9 and 6) about 10 minutes, maybe less to go thru them. She was trying to hold back tears the whole time at the frustration of not knowing any. she guessed at one and got it right (Asia) but I think she KNEW she got it right by chance and not because she knew it. *sigh*

Example 2: we are reading Properties of the Ecosystems, pg 8 and 9..we are reading and learning about biosphere which says that it is the part of the earth that contains life and says that the biosphere includes the atmosphere, and to her, the atmosphere is the very OUTER reaches of the sky before you get to outer space, so what could POSSIBLY live up there...didnt know how to explain that one to her...so she started to get teary because it didnt make sense to her
She also couldnt not figure out what a biome was...it says many ecosystems but she wants to know HOW many, so is the whole earth a biome since it contains many ecosystems or is the USA a biome, or N. america etc etc....

In short, she gets VERY frustrated when we read something and she doenst TOTALLY understand what is being said. I am literally stopping every 1-2 sentences to answer a question she has and even then, she is in tears or near tears 1/2 the time because she just doesnt 'get it' or it doesnt make sense to her...

I tried reading a few weeks ago [before we started ECC], a few books about the way our government works since we havent studied that thus far and, oh boy, it was AWFUL! She was in tears the whole time, and honestly, I think it had a physical effect on her (she was getting tummy aches and such)...

I dont know HOW to deal w/ a child like this! My oldest is JUST like her daddy, she reads it, she gets it, she knows it. Cut and dry.

My 2nd, not so much. I want to make school enjoyable for her. If I say, 'well, I'll just read this to your older sister and you can just listen but you dont need to 'get' any of it' then she REALLy doesnt like that, she WANTS to know it and understand it, but its VERY hard for her...

Any help?????
MY BLOG!
http://passionatemotherhood.blogspot.com/
Anna-mom of 4 girls, 1 boy
Savannah 09/00
Ariel 02/02
Skylar 10/03
Jaidyn 06/05[/color
]
Joshua 02/08
Started ECC July 2010!

mgardenh
Posts: 174
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2007 4:55 pm

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by mgardenh » Wed Jul 07, 2010 10:05 am

This sounds very tough. Hugs to you. I pray that Jesus will show you what to do. If she is 8 and doing ECC she is still young so it's no big deal if you don't do everything. It kind of sounds like she is anxious like there is a lot of anxiety for her. Could she be comparing herself to her sister who reads and understands it but she doesn't so she get anxious. It's nothing you're doing just the way your little girl is.

The only thing I can come up with is to talk to your pediatrician about it. There could be some emotional/psychological/thing or she could have anxiety issues. I don't know you or your daughter so please understand I'm just fishing for ideas for you. Do not mean to be offensive in any way.
Mike
DH to Laurel
SAHD (mostly) to
Julia - 10 years old, Explorations to 1850
Alexis-7 years old, Explorations to1850 see her story at
http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/alexisg
Have used MFW, k, 1st, Adventures, and ECC, CTG, RtR

Cyndi (AZ)
Posts: 543
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 4:22 pm

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) » Wed Jul 07, 2010 10:18 am

I have one of those. But only one, so it's easier for me to stop and address the issues of one child. These are suggestions based on what I've done for my dd.

* First off -- the first 2 weeks of ECC are the most difficult of the program, hands down. It will get easier from here. Maybe if you tell her that, it might give her something to look forward to? "We need to just kinda learn how we look at these maps, so that when we start having fun in all these countries we'll know where they are located."

* I explain that she can't already know everything in school, or I'd have to send her off to college already!!! (Hey, I can be dramatic, too - if I do it in a silly way, it works. Sometimes.) I let her know that I'm expecting her to not know this stuff or I wouldn't have bothered to spend so much money on the books. (Money is a trigger with her - she's a saver.)

* "If you will calmly tell me what you don't understand, I will calmly explain it in a different way. But you have to pay attention and not fuss." Then while she's breathing to calm down, I'm praying for wisdom!

* If she's hungry or tired, I address that, but usually she's just being a perfectionist. It might take yet another talk about "Only God is perfect" and "How many times did Thomas Edison try before he made the light bulb?"

* That map pre-test. Sheesh. I just got really excited and told her that it would be so cool to see how many countries she learns in only one year of school! Again, if she already knew them, we wouldn't use this awesome curriculum, but I bought it because that's what God wants us to study this year.

* Very simplistic - the earth's atmosphere protects us so that we can live on this planet. It's part of the biosphere because we couldn't live without it.

* Biomes are explained much better further in the book. Maybe flip to Unit 2 and show her that she will get to learn about all the biomes and which ecosystems are in them later. The first 2 weeks are like reading the Table of Contents in a book -- you don't know what is going to happen yet, only the titles.

HTH. I'm just rambling, and now I've got to start scrambling -- swim lessons! I'll say a prayer for you. ((HUG))
2018/19: US1877
used MFW from K through WHL

Julie in MN
Posts: 2928
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by Julie in MN » Wed Jul 07, 2010 11:10 am

Hi Anna,
I like the suggestions you've received.

And I'd even consider just skipping the things you mentioned (geo pretest, POE chapter on biosphere), although not sure how that would work for your older child. My youngest did ECC in 3rd grade & POE wasn't even in the program -- yet it was a wonderful year. POE was great for him in 8th grade. I wonder if there's even a way to convince her that POE is more of your oldest child's science, and nature walks/experiments/animal book is more her science this year? If not, Cyndi's right that the biomes will be more concrete (deserts, rainforests). We even built a desert biome in 3rd grade that's still going in 8th. Maybe she could be in charge of some of those things?

I have a 2nd child who still (at age 23) doesn't quite get that her brothers are just always going to be different ages than her :~

Julie
More on perfectionists here: http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=2765
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

TriciaMR
Posts: 1001
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 11:43 am

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by TriciaMR » Wed Jul 07, 2010 11:25 am

Anna,

This might be one of those *few* times where you do science separately with this child, until she get the bigger picture? Or you tell her, you know, this science is only for Big Sister. You get it again when you're older.

Another thought, ask her not to interrupt. Ask her to listen to the whole thing and save questions to the end of the time. Sometimes more explanation is coming, and if she'll just wait for the whole reading, she might understand more. Also, before she asks questions, have her narrate. Sometimes putting thoughts together to express what she heard might help her understand.

Or, maybe she not an auditory learner? Maybe she's visual and needs to read along side you?

Now, if it isn't ONLY science, and it's everything, then I like Cyndi's ideas.

Even I, as an adult, don't always get something the first time I read it or hear it. Sometimes I just read it and let it go. Then, later on, I'll read something else that connects to that first thing, and viola! it all makes sense.

One more thing to consider (besides Mike's anxiety thing) is a food sensitivity... My dd falls apart over very minor, little things if she has a certain food. If I keep that food out of her system, she's pretty good (98% of the time) about things.

{{Hugs}} from a BTDT, got the t-shirt mom...

-Trish
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
My blog

mamacastle2
Posts: 54
Joined: Sat Feb 20, 2010 9:26 am

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by mamacastle2 » Wed Jul 07, 2010 3:28 pm

Anna,

I could've written your entire post. My daughter is 8 (almost 9) and honestly sounds just like your daughter. She is my oldest and was in 3rd grade last year when we studied ECC. She struggled with the same things your daughter did in the first few weeks. There were other times and other issues throughout the year, but those were the hardest weeks because of the fact that they were overview weeks: here's a bunch of info without much explanation. Through ECC, you'll get the explanation. So if you can sit her down at a time when you aren't doing ECC or any school and just let her know that "There is going to be a lot of info the next couple of weeks that we might not understand. But I promise you when we're finished with ECC (or with a specific biome, or with a specific book), you will understand it better than you do now."
Cyndi (AZ) wrote:* "If you will calmly tell me what you don't understand, I will calmly explain it in a different way. But you have to pay attention and not fuss." Then while she's breathing to calm down, I'm praying for wisdom!
This is a great suggestion. I don't expect my daughter to understand/know everything, but often her way of letting me know she's frustrated or that she's not getting it comes off as rudeness to me. And that I don't allow. I hate to admit, but so often the crying, the teariness, the "I don't get it" and the pouting that suffices just sets me off and then we're both sinning. I'm trying to pray, pray, pray for wisdom before I answer because if your daughter is anything like mine, once she doesn't get something, she kind of shuts down and no matter how many different ways I try to explain it, she won't get it.

I know for my daughter, it's not just science. It's every subject any time she doesn't get it automatically. With math, trying to get her to do math facts practice is hard, timing them almost impossible. Spelling Power was difficult, but I'm going to try one more time this school year. Anyway, for us, it was a lot of me praying for my attitude. I had to realize my daughter was the child and it was my attitude that needed adjusting, my heart that needed to be right. Cyndi's suggestions are awesome, but with my daughter it is more of a character issue with both of us.
Jeanne
Wife to Brody
Mother to DD 10, DS 7, DD 5, DS 3, DD 1
MFW User Since 2007: MFW 1st, Adv., ECC, CTG
2011-2012 - RTR & MFWK

Cyndi (AZ)
Posts: 543
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 4:22 pm

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) » Wed Jul 07, 2010 3:57 pm

mamacastle2 wrote:I don't expect my daughter to understand/know everything, but often her way of letting me know she's frustrated or that she's not getting it comes off as rudeness to me. And that I don't allow. I hate to admit, but so often the crying, the teariness, the "I don't get it" and the pouting that suffices just sets me off and then we're both sinning. I'm trying to pray, pray, pray for wisdom before I answer
That's exactly it. I say to myself, "A calm answer turns away wrath" (although I'm known to paraphrase it to "a calm answer turns away whining"). The quieter and calmer I can be, and definitely sitting with her and not standing over her, the faster my dd responds. If I'm to train her in the way she should go, I better be going that way myself - which takes prayer!
2018/19: US1877
used MFW from K through WHL

momtogc
Posts: 78
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2007 11:25 pm
Location: AR

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by momtogc » Wed Jul 07, 2010 10:52 pm

Hi,

I'm sorry to hear about your struggles this week. (((Many hugs))) We just started ECC this week, too. My dd is eight, but will be nine in a month, so pretty close in age to your dd. We didn't really get the biome stuff either. I was also wondering what that means - how many ecosystems are in a biome....?? I couldn't figure it out and I'm nearly 49! So tell her for me that I feel her pain! I am one who wants answers, too. I'm always asking questions until I understand something fully. It still drives my Mom crazy. : )

My dd sometimes gets upset like that, too, when she doesn't understand something and once she cries, it's hard to move on. Lots of cuddling and reassuring has to happen first. But sometimes I just say, well, let's look it up in a book, online, ask Daddy. We find someway to get more information. Maybe you could ask her what she "thinks" on these tough topics. For instance, answer her with a question such as.... what do you think it means when they are talking about the biosphere? You could compliment her on her thoughtful answer (even if it's not exactly the right answer). Does this make sense? Maybe it would be a self-confidence builder.

Also, it sometimes helps my dd if we draw what we are talking about. For instance with the POE lesson, I sketched on a scrap paper what I thought the four parts to the biosphere are according to what we read. I wasn't exactly sure about the atmosphere so I told my dd that I thought it was the air where the birds fly. She accepted that answer - it seemed right to me. Maybe later I'll find out that I am wrong and I'll let my dd know that I was mistaken. I think it helps if they realize that we don't always know the answers either.

Best wishes to you. I hope it goes well. Since we both have started ECC at the same time and will be studying the same material most of the way through the year, would it help your dd if she had an online friend (my daughter) that she could email and "discuss" or share questions and ideas with regarding the ECC material? If so, let me know and I'll give you the email address. We would be glad to help.

Meleasa
Mom to Gabi, a fun-loving and happy girl!
MFW 1st, Adventures, ECC, CTG, RTR, Exp-1850

RachelT
Posts: 352
Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2006 2:45 pm

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by RachelT » Wed Jul 07, 2010 11:09 pm

Hi! Sounds like it's been a rough last few days for this child - and her mama! My 2nd child (also a girl) is like this when she can't quite do things her older brother can. She actually is near or ahead his ability level in some subjects, but where he "gets it" more quickly, it frustrates her.

Two things specific to ECC:
1.) The general stuff in the first couple of weeks is more "work" and seems more difficult. It doesn't feel like the rest of ECC. I think when you start learning about cultures and people, reading fun books and making food, it will all be more enjoyable! For the map pretest, my children had only studied some geography of North America in ADV the year before, so I tried to see if they could remember the main countries, oceans, and then maybe some of the other continents. That was it. We didn't even try other countries.

2.) Properties of Ecosystems has a lot of great information, but I quickly found that I needed to summarize a lot of it while reading it for my children. They just could not attend to the reading, nor could they understand a lot of it. I would try to skim over it and then pull out the main ideas or new vocabulary terms that they needed to know. They really got a lot more out of looking at the Usborne book with me and finding other children's books about the science topics at the library or looking through the Complete Book of Animals. Our library also had some videos about various habitats. There are lots of other science materials that can be valuable this year if POE is too advanced for this child.

Just reading through your description, it sounds more like this dd might not be comprehending or remembering all of what you are reading to her. Does she learn visually? Maybe you can find pictures in other books or on the internet of what you are talking about. Does she learn when she is moving? Would it help her to draw or color while she is listening or move her hands with a small quiet toy when she listens? I think if you try to look at how she learns best, you might be able to find new ways of helping her gather the information. Maybe she is not an auditory type of learner, but would do better with some of these other activities. Maybe she is frustrated because she can only remember some of the words you are saying, but can't visualize or make a picture in her mind of everything you are saying.

Just adding more thoughts to the discussion. You are getting lots of other good ideas from others on this thread, too!
Rachel
Rachel, wife to Doug ~ 1995, mom to J (17) and B (15)
MFW K (twice), 1st (twice), Adv., ECC, & CtG 2006-2010,
Classical Conversations 2010-2016,
ECC/AHL 2016-17, eclectic 2017-18, WHL & US1 2018-19

http://rachelsreflections-rachelt.blogspot.com/

rawbanana
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 1:22 pm
Location: Nebraska

Re: ECC week 1- having issues

Unread post by rawbanana » Thu Jul 08, 2010 8:47 am

Wow ladies, thank you! I wish there was a way to address every post but I cant remember it all!

Lets see...she ALWAYS reads along with me...she does playdoh while I read (thought it might help her to have something in her hands)...I HAVE asked what she thought it meant, that just confuses/frustrates her more...she doesnt compare herself to her sister...

I have to remember that she is EIGHT and would be starting 3rd grade this fall. Sometimes she seems so much older to me. She was doing 4th grade LA last year and would be starting the EIGHTH grade level in Spelling Power this fall (!), so I think I forget her 'real' age sometimes...

I told her yesterday that I am going to read the whole page/paragraph-whatever and that at the END she can ask me questions or at the END I will explain to her what she should know from that page. but the the thing is, say there are 8 paragraphs on a page (see, we've tried this before), and there is something in paragraph 2 she didnt understand, her brain kind of sticks on that and she doesnt really pay attention to the rest of the page...so at the end, I explain it or answer her question and then she says 'ok, and what else did you say?'.....GRRR!!!!! =)

Its not just science, she does this sometimes with our bible reading, with math etc...She can be a bit of a perfectionist at times though I didnt really realize it. Yesterday I was having them copy the John 3:16 verse in print and told them to write as neatly as possible. It bothered her that her 'o' in the word 'for' was maybe bigger than it should be and she didnt want to erase and smudge her paper....*sigh*...

I *DO* need to pray for myself as well as at times I get VERY irritated at her while doing school. Sometimes I let it show and she and the other girls realize it. Sometimes when she stops every 2 sentences to ask me a question, they will sigh, which I know they hear me doing.

She said yesterday morning when we were discussing all this (her frustration and me telling her its just not worth it, that for the last year or two, EVERYTHING she has gotten frustrated about, she eventually understood), that she sometimes gets frustrated because it seems like *I* am frustrated. I know this is SO true. I dont think she GETS frustrated because I'm frustrated, but once she is frustrated and knows that I am too, I think its harder for her to calm down.

I took 2 weeks off of math because that was getting her near tears everytime we did it. She has a VERY sensitive tummy and when she gets upset she gets BAD belly aches. The last 2 weeks we have had to GREATLY modify her diet as a LOT of things were bothering her tummy, things she normally ate just fine.

So ANYWAY, I am going to try to relax more and try the new approach of 'I'll tell you what you need to know after I read it', we'll see if that works =)

Thank you for your encouragement ladies =)
MY BLOG!
http://passionatemotherhood.blogspot.com/
Anna-mom of 4 girls, 1 boy
Savannah 09/00
Ariel 02/02
Skylar 10/03
Jaidyn 06/05[/color
]
Joshua 02/08
Started ECC July 2010!

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests