My younger daughter is a little distraught over XtraMath, a site for youngsters learning math facts.
In the grand scheme of life, it’s really a pretty simple site. It has participants practice facts, no more than 8 minutes a day, and tracks progress for concerned adults wanting to watch.
I nag her about doing it.
The same way I did with violin lessons.
The same way we do with our students to make themselves better readers.
We all repeat the same mantra, embodied in the age-old joke:
How does one get to Carnegie Hall? Practice, practice, practice.
It all goes back to a theme of creating new habits. Already my grand ideas of 10 situps every night is waning. Already I’ve decided that going to bed early is more than I can handle right now.
So how can we expect children to form habits that we KNOW are good for them when we can’t do it ourselves?
My therapist said that to lose weight–a perennial goal for me–it really has to be among the three most important things in one’s life.
And I think she’s right.If you want to accomplish any goal, it has to be more than checking off a box.
But my daughter doesn’t have the capacity to make math one of the most important things for her.
So I guess I’ll keep nagging…
And maybe I’ll hire myself someone to keep me on track with my resolutions. Goodness knows I’m not doing it myself.