Pure Randomness!

Pure Randomness!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Rahul the drummer: Part II

I need to apologize to the world, in case I have killed the next Ustad Zakir Hussain before he even touched a tabla. It is not that Rahul doesn't drum any more, but it is much more easier for me to distract him. The surprising part is, I can distract him with a multiplication problem or a sentence from which he needs to find the prepositions.
I have started teaching Rahul at home for 2hours for the last 3 weeks or so. I start with a page of writing in a 4 line sheet. Rahul has the habit of mixing up small and capital letters when he is writing anything and his writing is readable only by himself. After 3 weeks of writing, I see that his capital letters have disappeared, even from the beginning of sentences. I need to reinsert that, but that is a smaller problem than sentences peppered with capital letters all over. Also, I am able to read what he is writing. He just didn't know how to write small letters for 'G', 'F' and 'J'.
Rahul has lost a couple of weeks when he was sent home due to non-payment of fees. That was the time I taught division to the class. He was totally lost when we were doing division problems in class later. Now that he has learnt division, he has started listening in class and also doing the sums.
Now I know that the major reason for Rahul was, not understanding what was happening in class. His drumming would have also stemmed from the frustration from that. Now that he has started following in class, he doesn't feel the need to drum. He is more enthusiastic and attentive.
It has not been very easy to keep him steady and make him listen in the beginning when I have started the extra classes with him. First, I had to lure him to stop drumming and listen with the small double drum I have carried from Bangalore. He could drum for 5 mins if he stays and listens for an hour. This helped and he started listening. The 5 mins he drums is unbearable. He will use 2 pencils to drum. First he did that without any rhythm and later he managed to find some rhythm.
After 2 days another possible reward caught his eyes and he moved away from the drum. He asked me whether he can use my laptop. From then onwards, once he finishes his session he can draw, play, read on my laptop. That changed the world for Rahul. He would wait for his 10mins with my laptop by being extremely good and doing all I ask him to do. After 2 weeks, he is now so engrossed in the work he is doing, he does not even bother whether he is getting his time with the laptop any more. I have never seen an investment strategy working so nicely with any kid till now. I would say an investment strategy which finds itself redundant after sometime is the best strategy.
We did some writing, some grammar, reading and Math. He now knows division too. I will teach him something which I am going teach or revise in class the next day. Then he is all ears when he sits in class since he understands what I am talking about clearly. He also does the test at the end of the class well most of the time.
I also found out that he is pretty smart. Usually if some one shows me a card trick or a hand trick I will be able to show it back to them in 2 mins. Rahul showed me few tricks; one in which he starts with a very small ball of paper in both his hands, he cup the hands down and then opens them, both the balls are under the same hand. I managed to show this back to him quickly. But then he wrapped a rubber band around 2 of his bent fingers, he opens the fingers and the bands are around the other 2 fingers now. I just couldn't figure out how he was doing it. I had to ask him to show, which he did. He shows me something or the other every day. One day he stood on his head and hands, I thought he is done when he stood like that, and then he removed his hands and just stood on his head without touching any wall. I was scared that he would fall, but encouraged him by clapping my hands anyway.
We both have bonded nicely during this time and this also makes him nice to me in class by listening to me. Overall the 2 hours I have been spending with Rahul has given me tremendous returns. Now I am adding one more kid to the 2 hour program. Hopefully it will benefit her also, though her needs are different.
So coming to the young couple with a kid story, since I was spending 2 hours with Rahul I had something to write about, but since I was spending the time with him, I didn't have the time to write about it. 'If you were around before you were around, you would never have been around" indeed.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Prequel to Rahul, the drummer: Part II

I have started teaching Rahul at home every day for 2 hours. I wanted to write about it for a long time, but I am just not getting time to do that. Especially since the 2hours I am spending with him daily, totally depletes my free time. Then I was reminded of this joke I have heard or may be read in RD. I just had to write this down before it goes off from my head. It goes like this.
A young couple with a 2 year old son was getting cozy with each other when suddenly the son walks in. After this happens the umpteenth time, the frustrated man turns to the kid and tells "If you were around before you were around, you would never have been around".
I will soon come back with 'Rahul, the drummer: Part II'. If you have not got the connection, you will get it then.