Sunday, September 28, 2008

Book Review: Teachable Moments


I picked this book up at the library as the title intrigued me.  I am always in search of teachable moments in my children's days, but most of the time they present themselves unannounced and unplanned. ;)

This book is geared toward parents of children in public school and offers tips to help them succeed.  I liked many of the ideas it presented, but was not pleased with the author's tone.  This book seems to assume that any and every child can be a perfect reader, researcher, writer and student if only their parents will implement a few easy tutorials.  Oh, and from a young age as well.  While it gives ideas to use with all age groups, it assumes you have a child who has been given these helps from the beginning.  I know from experience with teaching other children and rearing and teaching my own that every child is different and you cannot make a child into something he is not.  My oldest, despite me following all the "rules" from the beginning (several of which were mentioned in this book) is not a reader like myself.  He is a proficient reader, can read fast, comprehends what he reads, etc.  But he doesn't like to sit and read like me.  He is however a writer, and I didn't follow any of the so called rules with regard to that.  My second son is a reader yet, despite all the help I've given him over the last 8 years of school, is not a writer.  I am listing here some of the advice I found in this book that I found helpful, new or insightful.  It does have plenty of that.  But I go on record as saying the advice could have been rendered in a better manner and that the book's title is misleading imo.

In the section on reading there was the usual advice such as surrounding your child with books, reading to them at all ages, being a good example of a reader, etc.  The section on writing is pretty technical, with information about planning charts, clustering, free writing, etc.  It seems more along the lines of what the child should have picked up in school, not really "help" the parent can give the child at home after school.  (Although helpful for a homeschooling parent who may need help in the area of writing instruction.)  There is an entire section devoted to quite clever ways of using the newspaper for "teachable moments" for all age groups that I did find interesting.  It seemed to fit in with theme of the book, where some of the other chapters did not ("Using the Computer" and "Attending Back to School Night" seemed out of place to me.)

All in all, I'm glad I got this book from the library and didn't purchase it myself.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by!