I attended the SCBWI virtual conference this weekend and came back refreshed
and buzzing. with excitement. I heard from a keynote speaker that we often
mistake process for procrastination.
An example would be, me needing to clean up before I can get down to a task at
hand. Often, we label children as being lazy for failing to complete a task at hand.
What we mistake as laziness or procrastination might be a process for a child.
I failed 4th grade math and was automatically labeled as lazy. My parents were
quick to pinpoint how “ungrateful” I was and how I was not trying hard enough.
Please note that not only had I skipped grades, a reward for being too gifted but
was also the youngest pupil in the class.
What my math teacher and my parents failed to see was that I was not ready
developmentally to solve those mathematical problems at that age.
To validate my theory, I recall being top of my class in mathematics by grade 8.
What had changed was my mother’s perspective to look past “how she had failed
as a mother” to how can she help me. She brought the focus back to me.
So she hired a tutor. I remember my math tutor having me repeatedly practice the
same math topic until I had mastered the content. The repetition helped me
immensely. It not only solidified the concept in my head but gave me enough data
to confidently apply the concept to other problems.
The repetition also allowed me to regulate my nervous system. Math was a sore
subject. I was humiliated and called names because of that subject in school and at
home. The negative feelings attached to the subject made repetition a necessary
I repeated the math problem enough times to have mastered it. A well-known
concept of practice makes perfect.
Weaving for little children is an excellent way to self-regulate and learn
mathematics at the same time. Mathematical content and competencies
embedded in the process of weaving include estimation, visualization, problem-solving, making connections, communicating, counting, odd and even numbers, adding, multiplying, pattern, composing and decomposing shapes, transformations, symmetry, fractions, percentages, area, perimeter and linear measurement.
So naturally a Peg loom for smaller kids ages 5-8 is an excellent toy to gift
as an introduction to weaving.
The Laploom is an excellent beginner weaving kit for slightly older kids
Although I would argue that the Pegloom works well to introduce the art of
weaving to both adults and children alike.
Weaving connects communities to mathematics, culture and place. What
better gift for your kid that does all of the above? And we all want this for
our kids isn’t it?
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