I don't think I'm a 'natural' teacher, so most of our kids' learning occurs through other modes, other than direct (or indirect) teaching.
But from time to time DD (8.75) wants to know something, that requires some kind of teaching, and then I end up pretty frustrated. So maybe in addition to not being able to teach per se, my expectations are too high?
Example. DD has been expressing her wish to study geography. We happened to be at a bookstore where I found a neat book, something like A Kid's Introduction to the World, and I showed it to her. We read the first chapter together in the store, and she LOVED it. Got jumpy with excitement.
We start reading it together at home. My first issue--she has a defeatest attitude right away. Claims she doesn't understand things, even before I finish reading a sentence. This perfectionist's attitude frustrates me, as I'm not sure how to deal with it. I never expect to understand things on the first try, and it doesn't really bother me.
When I try to explain, she'd continue claiming she didn't understand things. I think she shuts down.
I also think she expects to have a deep understanding right away, while at the very beginning when a subject is introduced, some things are to be just accepted, such as definitions. For example, we read about the continental shift. There were illustrations and explanations. She herself played with a hard boiled egg to demonstrate to me how the plates could possibly move. It looked, to me, that she clearly 'got' it. Then she said she didn't understand what the continental shift was. I think her issue is that she wasn't 100% satisfied with the name of the phenomenon, and why this particular name was given.
In a way she seems to be in need a much deeper delve into the subjects, but on the other hand, she refuses to go deeper as well, and won't apply herself to trying to understand sometimes more difficult concepts that would give her better answers.
Then the second issue--I can't read even a sentence without her interrupting with something that is mostly irrelevant to what we are reading--an association with a word or an image, a seemingly random thought. After every. single. sentence.
I used to tell her that she needed to focus if she wanted me to help her out. But I do find this sort or harsh.
Last night I tried to just go with the flow. I stopped a listened, and then tried to gently bring her back to what we were reading. Then we'd read another sentence. But I find it trying.
I guess my own issue is that I like to finish what I start, and I don't like when *my* flow is interrupted every 30 seconds.
Tonight she wants to learn more about geography again. Which would include me sort of "teaching" her. Do I need to adjust my expectations? My strategies? Both?