I worry that there is this disconnect between what Bear learns in kindergarten and what is reemphasized at home. Aside from emails sent by his teachers or papers I see once a week in his folders I don’t really know what they’re learning beyond a Kindergartner’s recollection of the day. I know that he is doing well. I know that he is a kind, rule abiding boy. But, I’m not there anymore to volunteer on Mondays. I’m not there to prod it out of him after school. So, I do my best to make sure he is learning something outside of school and fingers crossed it’s the same as what he’s learning at school.
Because I am here and he is there we have a special notebook. He writes me every day for a week and when I come home for the weekend I take the notebook back and write him everyday. We switch every time we see each other. Sometimes he’s practicing writing and sometimes he’s practicing reading and I know I’m practicing penmanship so he can actually read what I’m saying.
I love it. I love the three sentences he writes me that are often the same, but every time I see his kindergarten “I love you” or “I miss you” I fill with hope and ever enduring love.
Beyond writing to each other we rely on other things to help educate and yet often entertain because the H simply cannot do it all. No man or woman truly can, we all just do the best that we can. And yes, the kids watch TV (almost exclusively Mickey Mouse Clubhouse because Bear is too accommodating and Bella too stubborn). And no, that doesn’t make us bad parents, it means we’re doing the absolute best we can.
I have raved about various Leapfrog products before because I can’t get over how they are educational and entertaining. Can all things be that way? Why am I not usually being educated when I read buzzfeed, but just entertained? And why am I often bored when trying to read a particularly laboriousness article on the New York Times?
Bear got the Mr. Pencil: The Lost Colors of Doodleburg ultra e-book and I have to say that I love how it emphasizes the reading and writing skills that he learns in Kindergarten with what we’re trying to do with our special notebook. There are three different reading levels that change as your child progresses to have longer sentences and words. The same is true for the writing levels. In the reading portion, you have the ability to choose a word and have it defined or sounded out which adds so much depth and breadth to the content. You can also be at different levels within writing and reading if you’re stronger in one.
We’ve never had an ultra e-book before, but I really like them and I think that I will definitely get more. Especially for Bella because I think adding the story line adds to the game play because you feel more connected and engaged with what you’re trying to achieve in each of the mini games. Bear loved the mini games, of course, especially trying to swim away from “the scary fish in Finding Nemo”.
It gives me some semblance of comfort to feel like I’m still a part of his day and his educational development with our notebook and also knowing that he has his Leapfrog games to give him more chances to learn outside of school.
All opinions and grammatical errors are entirely my own. I was provided with the Mr. Pencil: The Lost Colors of Doodleburg ultra e-book by Leapfrog for the purposes of this review. But honestly, I love Leapfrog and have now been converted to ultra e-books!