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Boy, oh boy...I think I may have found the ticket for getting along better with my oldest son. Some days I feel like all I'm doing is saying things like:

"Pick that up!"
"Put that away!"
"All I said was to turn on the hose for the garden a little, not play with it!"
"Put your bottom in your chair!"
"Clean up your room!"
"Stop touching your brother!"

I was listening to a podcast on on Saturday night as hubby was over at the church working late on his sermon. It was an interview with a homeschool mom in the trenches who has had similiar problems with her oldest son as I have had with mine and one of things she discovered was that her learning style was profoundly different from her son's. They spent a little time discussing the book "The Way They Learn" by Cynthia Tobias. I thought to myself I needed to get that book...

Well, I'm sitting in the youth room downstairs at church yesterday feeding baby girl while hubby's teaching on Sunday night, and I see the book setting on the table! I started reading it after the kids went to bed, and my husband I were laughing out loud at how it described us.

It turns out, without going into a lot of detail, that each one of us are different and that my son and I are basically opposites. I'm very linear, just do it, dependable, stable, rigid...He's strong willed and likes to find things out for himself. The best example she gives fits us perfectly: I tell my son, if you stand on that coffee table I'm going to spank you. For someone like me, the threat of the discipline was enough to deter me when I was a child. But not for my son. He feels like the excitement of standing on the coffee table is worth the spanking so he does it anyway.

I'm hoping that I can start choosing my battles and stop micromanaging him. I'm anxious to pick up the book again today--but first, housework and a crying baby calls!


It's so important to recognize those different learning styles. My husband and I are completely different. He, was the compliant child. I wasn't exactly the dare-devil, but I certainly tried to have it my way without getting into trouble!

April 30, 2007 at 12:46 PM  

There you go! Everyone is so different. I am very different from my kids too. Once you can find the key to how they learn, it's a much easier ride. My toughest one is a self-teacher. If she sees it on TV or reads it, she knows it. If someone tells it to her she spends too much time debating whether or not they are right to absorb it.

April 30, 2007 at 4:49 PM  

I took my oldest out driving today... and after he hit the curb he yelled at meabout how much he hates driving and how much stuff there is to remember. He apologized right afterwards but it reminded me how different my sons, my husband and I all are. He was feeling overwhelmed with all the instructions. Tomorrow he will have to go out with his dad!

May 1, 2007 at 1:26 AM  

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