May 10, 2011

Some Days He's Smart . . .

and some days he's not.

Have you ever noticed this phenomenon with your children?

I'm talking about how your child knows something one day and the next day acts like he's never heard of the concept before.

An example. My son is obsessed with the Ranger's Apprentice series even though he can't read them yet. I've told him about the books and he loves the covers, so often I find him studying the covers very carefully. The other day Cowen came to me and said, "Mom, do we have all the Ranger Apprentice books?"

Me: "No, there are 8 in the series."

Cowen--without the slightest hesitation: "We have five. That means we need three more. But if we buy one, we'll only need two more. And if we buy one more after that we'll only need one more. And if we buy one more after that, we'll have them all."

Me: "Great job figuring that out, buddy."

The next day. Me: "Cowen, what is eight subtract five?"

Cowen: "I don't know."

Me: "Okay, what is five plus three?"

Cowen--long pause while he counts on his fingers: "Eight."


Another example.

Cowen has gotten tired of reading practice. He is tired of his reading books. He is tired of me asking him how to spell things. With a burst of inspiration, for reading time today I handed him the computer. He was flabbergasted. I never hand him the computer.

After Miriam outgrew it, I forgot all about it. Until today.

I let Cowen play around on it for a good 30 minutes then I joined him on the couch and had him read Zac the Rat to me. It is the first book under the "Learn to Read" section. He read it perfectly, except "the", the first time through, including words he'd never seen before. Not hard words, but new words.

And yet, he tells me that reading is too hard and he can't do it.

So how much can he read? I HAVE NO IDEA.

Like I said, some days he's smart, and other days, not so much.


  1. I thought there were 10 Ranger's Apprentice. The 10th just came out. I am on hold and eager.

  2. um, cowen is luke's twin from another mother...i'm not kidding. we're totally into "the fly guy" books right now. luke will actually read them over and over. and sue's little on, marshall, who is in second grade - has all these silly books about a "mr underpants" or something like that...and luke will actually sit all by himself and read them...of course, they're a bit naughty at times...lots of jokes on people and such - but i don't care if it means he'll pick it up and read it. oh - and one more thing - my friend lets her boys read comic books - they seem to really get into them and will read on their own.