Inside the Tornado Mind…

I am having so much fun with Tornado Boy lately. I truly never know what to expect from him. I feel exceptionally lucky because although he has boundless energy, his base disposition is incredibly cheerful. That goes a long way in helping me to weather the storm on days where he is such a whirling dervish.

I wanted to share this video, and I apologize in advance, because the quality is pretty horrendous. We were in a diner and it was loud and I’m definitely not cut out to be a cinematographer by any means. I just really feel that this shows so much of TB’s innate personality – outgoing, friendly and incredibly curious.

I’m getting more and more glimpses lately into how TB’s mind works. The wheels are always turning, from the moment he gets up until the time when he finally rests at night. He plays hard and he sleeps hard. He is getting more creative as the days go by. The other day he called Tornado Dad and I into the bathroom to show us his new “hat”. Besides the fact that he couldn’t see it from the vantage point that we could, I thought that this was pretty clever:

My final tidbit actually happened tonight. We were playing around with Dreambox Learning. It’s a K-3 Online Math program that I’d read several reviews of recently. Tornado Boy is totally loving it. He’s spent about 5 hours with it and is still doing their “assessment” exercises. So far their program has him in the early 2nd grade area. I’ve been sort of surprised at some of the things that he’s been able to speed through – like comparing 3 digit numbers. I’ve also been somewhat surprised at some of the things that have been more challenging – like working with a number line. It is interesting for me to watch. I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with him from a math perspective. I’ve been pretty resistant to just drilling the facts with him because I don’t want him to get bored. He also seems to have a more natural grasp on multiplication than his does on addition. He seems to like to play with the mental math facts more with multiplication.

Anyway… the Dreambox trial has a countdown that it shows each time that you log in and it tells you how many days are left in your trial. It also is on display on the top of the play screen as well. This seems particularly troublesome to TB. I think that he’s worried that Dreambox will just disappear at the end of the trial. I told him that we’ll consider purchasing a membership if we like it enough. Tonight after we finished our work, he asked if he could play with our Math-U-See blocks and I said sure. About a minute later he asked me to come over, that he had something to show me and I found this:

Tornado Boy decided that he wanted to show me exactly when Dreambox was going to go away. We have ten days left in our trial, and he represented each day with a corresponding Math-U-See block. He told me that the blue 10 block was today, and after today, we would only have 9 days left, the day after tomorrow, we would have 8, then two days after tomorrow we would have 7 and so on. I was intrigued, so I asked him what today was, and he said “Monday”. I said if today is Monday, what day will our trial run out? He counted out the days by name, through next Wednesday and then announced dramatically that on next Thursday, there would be no more Dreambox. I told him not to worry about it just yet.

I was truly impressed by TB’s conceptual understanding of math and dates. He’s still using his fingers for most addition problems, but he clearly gets how it all works together. I love that he’s really enjoying and soaking in math, but I’m really wondering what to work on with him next. I’m going to link this post to the Hip Homeschool Hop. Please feel free to leave me any suggestions! Thanks!

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7 Responses to Inside the Tornado Mind…

  1. min says:

    What a cute video! I love the HAT too. I love seeing how easily math concepts are grasped when it’s in a natural setting. There is no resistance nor confusion. It just makes sense. Love the way TB was demonstrate his knowledge using concrete materials.

  2. T A H. Love it. What a cutie! We have enjoyed a few online math programs as well. Stoppin by on the HHH!

  3. Mommywise says:

    He sounds like a really cool kid!
    Mommywise´s last [type] ..I love

  4. Mommywise says:

    We love Dreambox too. I love watching my daughter’s progress.
    Mommywise´s last [type] ..Dora not the cartoon

  5. Rebecca says:

    Looks like you have an extremely intelligent young man gifted with learning and curious….and he has a GREAT Mom who is working to provide him with an atmosphere for learning….and knowing that learning is fun! I need to check out that web site…Thanks so much for sharing…I’m dropping by from the HOp!
    Rebecca´s last [type] ..My New Homeschool NOT -A Planner

  6. What fun. It’s it great to see them find something they truly understand & excel at it.
    ChicHomeschoolMama´s last [type] ..Patriot Family

  7. sunnyvale422 says:

    I was hoping to see some advice, because I have similar problems with math and my daughter. She readily grasps come complex concepts, but struggles with some simple ones. It was the same with DreamBox. We stopped our subscription for now, because we got into the areas that were too difficult for her at the moment. I decided to quit “formal math” for now and focus more on logical reasoning. I like TB creativity – he seems to be exploding with his own ideas.
    sunnyvale422´s last [type] ..To Push or Not to Push

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