Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Some thoughts on memorization

Today the eight year old was demonstrating how he knew by heart, both the al hanisim addition for chanukah and the special tefilas geshem , the prayer for rain,  by declaiming them loudly in a sing song voice much to the chagrin of his siblings.   But it got me thinking, because I've been contemplating how to integrate memorization a la Charlotte Mason into our learning for quite some time.  But,  I once again have discovered that while I was mulling all of this over, memorization has found its way into our learning by itself.  It seems that certain type of memorization occurs almost organically especially with the younger set.  Some things get memorized by repetition, such as prayers and certain Torah passages, as well as songs or favorite children's books.  Interestingly, as I was looking up memorization in Charlotte Mason type learning, I discovered that in that system, memorization was used for giving children food for thought rather than teaching facts.  So I was relieved to find out that we are already doing this kind of memorizing without any stress or pain involved.  So while I still hope to find suitable poetry and such that could in theory be memorized, and while we do work on memorizing various math facts, etc., I no longer feel like it's something that is missing in our studies.  In fact,  it's something that has already been included ,  I just didn't see it because I wasn't thinking about it in the right context.  It just shows again,  how perspective is very important.


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