Savannah is learning to use the information highway
This month I was encouraged that Savannah is still motivated to engage in literacy activities. In December, she was so excited to help to write out Christmas Cards and dictated what she wanted people to know. However, since January, she has been sick and a little out of sorts as she tries to re-adjust to her home program after a relaxed December.
A few weeks ago, she took me by surprise when she asked to learn about Pakistan, and motioned for me to find the relevant encyclopaedia. Yes, I still have a collection of encyclopedias and I encourage my children to look up information before using the internet. Clearly, Savannah took notice of how her siblings gather information.
Unfortunately, in my collection of picture encyclopaedias I could not find any suitable information about Pakistan. But I did find some information in a 1994 edition of encyclopaedia Britannica, which Savannah latched onto. The volume of information in the encyclopaedia and the fact that it was text-heavy meant that it was difficult to create any meaningful learning for Savannah from the encyclopaedia.
However, it was so much more fun and easy to teach Savannah to do an internet search using The Grid 2. Prior to this I showed her a giant atlas and where Pakistan was located. As Savannah loved the Bollywood movie Veer Zaara, I knew it would be easier to relate the information to that. Lahore is where a large part of the movie took place, so using The Grid 2 Savannah practiced how to find information on the internet about Lahore.
We watched videos about Lahore and saved a few to her desktop so that she could watch it a few times.
It is not so easy for Savannah to express herself and sometimes she does not know what words to use. So I help her by watching the videos with her and commenting about what I see, and I invite her to comment: “That market is so busy. The people look hungry. Wow, there are lots of food to buy from the shops on the street. That looks like aloo paratha. What do you see?”
This week she is trying to collate her thoughts and write it down (using her page set in the Grid 2). Using descriptive words and expressing what she thinks and feels about some images is hard for her. But given time, and as we learn to encourage Savannah to explore her ideas; there is no telling what vocabulary she will acquire, nor how these learning experiences are impacting her development.
I am truly astounded when she remembers information from other learning activities such as remembering that there are stars and stripes in the American flag and then points out that there is a star too in the Pakistani flag.
Who would have pointed that out about Pakistan and the USA? Sometimes Savannah’s ability to see similarities in the world around her is both astounding, and refreshing. On this journey with Savannah, her unique view of the world around her is so encouraging to me.