I get asked this all the time as a mother of two young children who are both learning math, reading, colors, shapes, sign language, and more! How do you know it's working when your child it too young to take a test? Well that's one of the hardest parts, you won't for a long time! You may notice little things though that give you clues it's sinking in.
Things you may start to notice after you start teaching your baby to read are:
- Your baby (or toddler) wants you to read to them.
- They look at books by themselves.
- They want to do whatever program or teaching ritual you use.
- They get excited over certain words.
- They start to point out letters, or words, while you are out. (even if they don't say anything).
It's hard to keep going everyday when you aren't sure if they are getting it. But the day your 14 month old points to a pet store banner and says "dog!" (when there isn't a picture of a dog just and adoption plea) you'll cry! Keep in mind though, even then you may go months with out seeing them actually read anything. Often toddlers and babies don't express their ability to read or understand the world around them vocally. They are still exploring. I still have days where I wonder if it's working with my 2 year old. But then I get little hints, days of success where she will read something to me and I just have to know that on the days she doesn't she's still absorbing information. PS. don't expect your kids to get 100% of what you teach. No matter how many times you go over it. You don't remember everything someone tired to teach you either!
Things you may notice when your kids start to understand math, colors and shapes:
- My oldest daughter got obsessed with certain 'amounts' she wanted 3 beans, 3 chips, 3 cookies, 3 toys, 3 everything! She never said 3 (not at first anyway) she just picked 3 out and put them aside, or would ask for more, or hand me one back. Why 3? I have no idea!
- My younger daughter lays things out on the ground and stares at them. I didn't recognize it at first but then I realized her brillkid math program would lay things out in a similar fashion and simply tell her how many there were to teach number recognition. When she's left to play on her own she will remove one item continue to stare, put the item back and stare on. Add another item stare... remove another item stare. I can't promise you she's practicing but it sure seems like it.
- They start to show a preference towards one color, or a few select colors. (In clothing, food etc.)
- They start to show preference towards shapes (patters on clothing, bedding, toys, etc.)
- They become particular to food of one color (either liking or disliking it).
Here's just a few things my kids have done, and low and behold as my oldest daughter has become more vocal she understood way more then I had ever imagined she would! One of the hardest parts about teaching young children is wondering "Are they getting this?" rest assured they get it!