In a moment of insight that rippled through our family, my daughter Veda made a discovery with letters and numerals. Veda is almost four years old and has not been to any school.
Veda read F-O-X and T-U-B yesterday by herself. She then looked at the pictures that were on the card that has the letters and said “Fox” and “Tub”.
For a while I have known that she knows some letters, but haven’t really kept tab on which of the 26 letters of the alphabet she actually knows. If she comes across letters that she wants to know about, I help her when she asks me “What is this, Amma?”
This all happened due to a particular game we have. My sister-in-law gave us a letter game as a hand-me-down gift. The letters and numbers are bright plastic magnetic ones. The game has words on cards. In each word, the first letter is missing and can inserted into the slot. Usually we play with the letters and numbers by grouping them into colors and making rainbows out of them. That’s the extent of how we have used that game…
Yesterday, besides reading the letters in sequence, she did something different.
She arranged the number “1”, the the number “5”and the letter “E” in a particular order and said that they were the series “1, 2 and 3”.
“Do you see what I see?” she said.
My husband Anand saw how she saw it and when she saw that he got it, it was all so cool!
My mother-in-law, who was a quiet spectator to all of this told me and Anand later on, “So kids can actually learn at home! They don’t really have to go anywhere else! When I was growing up nobody believed anything could be learnt at home or knew to explain when we asked, and so we had to go to school.”
My mother-in-law is seeing what I see. And to me, it is all so cool!