Monday, April 14, 2008

smart bits of intelligence

For the past few weeks, much to husband's annoyance, I have been living, talking, walking and breathing Glenn Doman. I first read his teaching a baby to read, and then promptly went to the shop and bought drawing paper and markers, litered the dining table with cut cardboard and sat with Anjali every morning teaching her how to read mummy, daddy and Anjali. Mr Doman doesnt believe in testing, and just says flash, so in three weeks, we have gone through an amazing plethora of words, from about 5 or six domains, food, furniture, actions, etc.
I dont know if Anjali can read yet, but she has shown a good increase in vocabulary. If you tell her Anjali is dancing, she will dance, and if you tell her Anjali is jumping, she jumps. Couple of times I said Anjali is sleeping and she leaned back against me.
She also understands a lot of other stuff, like door and window, shoes, table etc, pretty much everything under the sun.
Husband was quite tolerant about the reading program. Then I got hold of how to teach your baby Math. The next day, I went to the shop and bought a load of red stickers. The shop only had about 1500 red stickers. I needed 5000.
Get the blue ones, Husband said.
No. Doman says red.
Why do you need 5000?
I need to make cards from 1 to 100.
Excuse me, How is Anjali going to could 100 dots?
Dont ask me. Doman says that its possible.
I dont believe it.
I dont believe it either, but people have tried it and it works. And the kit sells for 300 dollars. Why would anyone buy something for 300 dollars if it doesnt work?
Thats a lousy reason, that something is good because it is expensive.
Well. I am doing it. So there.
I didnt speak to husband for about two days over this.
That evening, when I came home, husband had made flash cards with red marker dots, from 1 to 10. So i guess he beleived in me, even though he didnt quite believe in Doman.
So we have done number from 1 to  30.
Two days ago, I sat with Anjali and did 7-5=2 and 20-15=5 with her.
Husband watched and said
Teacher Teacher?
How about starting with Additions?
We finished that last week.
(Husband hits his head in shock and frustration.)
 So, next week is multiplication?
(In my most serious tone) Yup.
And then division?
Hmm hmm
And then powers?
Thats right.
And then arithmetic progressions?
You are getting the hand of it.
Then logarithms, differentiation and integrations?
And then Laplace transforms?
No, I want to do fast fourier transforms first.
Of course, fourier is more basic than Laplace.
Much later, in toys r us, husband brought to me a set of flash cards for doing Math. Little cards for addition and subtractions. How much is three rainbows + two rainbows kind of thing.
Look at the age
4+, it said.
Should I ask the assistant if they have something for Laplacian transforms?
But even husband's most cynical nature is quite impressed by my adaptation to the encyclopedic knowledge program.  Doman's book, "How to give your baby encyclopedic knowledge", says that the way to do it is by making flash cards or "bits of intelligence", which is a beautiful picture of a subject, with the correct description attached to it.
I am a bit reluctant to make flash cards. Cards tend to get scattered and lost. So I got out my drawing block again and made books. It was quite smart really. The first book was a set of Anjali actions, with photos of her eating, sleeping, smiling, standing etc, with the corresponding captions. It was designed as a follow up to the reading program, to teach phrases. The next book had photos of her with mummy, daddy, granma etc, to teach her the concept of "with".
The I thought to myself, "photo printing is cheap, and to find the right books in the shop, you have to look hard". Anjali already has about 4 books with animals, different versions of cats, dogs, rabbits and elephants. Surely iwe need to tell her that the world is made up of other things besides these. I went to the neighborhood bookstore and all the fascinating books about science, geography and maths were for much bigger kids.
So I went to wikipedia. Pretty much each article has a picture and the pictures are good ones. So why not save the pictures as Jpegs and print them. The first batch of pictures was for three books - cats and dogs, birds and wonders of the world. 27 pictures, $6.25, three books that Anjali enjoys very much.
Husband likes the books too. To be sure, when I was making the cat and dog book, I aked him
Should I make one cat book, and one dog book, or one for cats and dogs?
Just write cat and dog at the bottom.
Well, I am not writing cat and dog, I am writing Persian cat, Japanese bobtail etc.
Why for?
It is important to give her as precise an information as you can and Mr Doman says...
You know, I watched a very critical review of this encyclopedic knowledge thingy on tv. They tested the encyclopedic kids with others and found that there was no such thing.
Its not a point of encyclopedic knowledge. Its just making your kid aware that there are more things in the world besides cats and dogs, and there are even so many cats and dogs.
You know, I would be happier if she sees two different cats and says they are both cats, than saying one is a japanese bobtail and the other is a persian cat.
I kept making the book.
Ten minutes later husband strolled over to take a look.
"Thats a furry brown cat"
"Thats a romanian stray cat"
"What??" I gasped.
"Yes, I see then all the time in Romania"
"This is also a Romanian stray cat"
"Its a Japanese bobtail", I said stiffly.
"Well, it looks like a stray cat".
then he flipped through and got to the dogs.
"thats a german sheperd, and this is a golden retreiver"
"This one's a cocker spaniel, thats a bulldog"
"Excuse me," I interrupted indignantly "Arent they all dogs?"
"Sorry, my excyclopedia does not extend to cats, just dogs"
"Do you think it is important to give Anjali the correct taxonomic description of different species?"
"Kithu", said husband, highly amused "did you just say "taxonomic description""



  1. Well, I am not so sure about whether kids this young can 'read'/do 'formal math'. But I do know that they understand the concept very early. Like Ananya has a book of baby's first 100 words and she can point out to all the pictures perfectly. I mean she does a lot of cool things that we wouldn't imagine a baby to do! We too have the alphbet flash cards with pictures - she can point out to the correct pictures at least. Also, she has the concept of 'more' and 'less'. say if I have 2 crackers in one hand and 1 in the other - she always goes for the 2 crackers! You will notice that Anjali will start grasping things with you just telling her once. It is interesting to do such experiments with kids. Kiran spends a lot of time in the evening with Ananya and books - I spend a lot of time doing various activities over the day. She helps me load the dryer, keep vegetables in the fridge, splash water in the tub and other stuff.

  2. Hello!

    I´m a mother from germany and just where searching about parents teaching their kids with the programm of glenn doman, and ended up here.
    You really started intensively the whole program, I´m not soo organised.
    I hope you write more about how it is going on, I´m interested in.
    Greetings, Silvia


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