Monday, July 06, 2009
A Capital Idea!
Do you remember learning the states and capitals? For a child who has trouble with memorization it can seem overwhelming to try and remember all 50 states and capitals. Not only that, but we'd like our children to be able to find them on a map. More memorization! My children suggested that perhaps we should move to a small island so they would have less to memorize. While I understand their memory challenges, I still wanted them to learn the information. I found a wonderful states and capitals game that used cartoon pictures to help visually associate the state with its capital, and also depicted where the state was located. (You can see the game at www.HeadsUpNow.com) The visual cues helped tremendously and soon my children were making the associations and began committing the facts to memory. I still needed to review the game cards now and then to help with retention, but the pictures always cued them to the correct response. One time I was doing a crossword puzzle and couldn't remember the capital of Alabama. Knowing that my kids had learned all the states and capitals I hoped that my son could help me out. I called out to Josh in the next room and asked, "What's the capital of Alabama?" His immediate response came back, "A!" I thought he was saying, "Eh?" since with his auditory processing issues he often needed repetition. So I repeated my question, and got the same response only this time with that querying inflection as if he was beginning to suspect it was some kind of trick question. When I realized he was telling me the capital letter for Alabama, I started laughing. Josh was not trying to be funny, he was attempting to answer what had to seem like a pretty dumb question for me to be asking him. He is pretty literal and impulsive and said the first thing that came to mind. Technically he was right about the capital of Alabama being the letter "A". Bless his heart for trying to answer my question even though it didn't make sense to him. When I explained that I actually wanted to know the state's capital city, he was able to supply that answer as well. We joke about always being able to tell a state's capital as long as we know what letter the state name starts with!