3 Cats

I live with 3 cats. No, they’re not mine, although I am particularly fond of them. That’s just how I’ve always been. These fearless, furry, fleabag felines are just so cute and lovable, especially the way they’re fiercely independent at times while positively cloying at others. It seems like I’ve always lived with cats. Or … Continue reading 3 Cats

Noah’s Ark

They came two by two, and seven by seven. No one led them, but they came anyway. Strike that. They were led by God’s invisible hand. Something like that anyway. The animals came in evens if they were unclean, and odds if they were clean. Whatever that means. Okay, I’m starting to lose the thread, … Continue reading Noah’s Ark

Skunk Season

I drove past the dead body this morning, with equal parts apprehension and disgust; the apprehension because I worried I might graze it with one of my wheels, and the disgust because of what it was. Now I’m not generally queasy when it comes to gross things. I did help birth a few cows, after … Continue reading Skunk Season

Identifying the Cow

cowMy youngest daughter has Down syndrome, and she struggles with identifying words, so after consulting with her teacher, and with her speech therapist, and after reading the developmental books, my wife decided to come up with activities geared towards helping her recognize and repeat simple words she should know by now. It’s amazing to me how much she does know, actually, so this afternoon I ran through the exercise with her to see her level.

The sheet is all about animals. In fact, my wife laminated it for sustainability (and she can use it as a placemat too if needed), and made move able cards to place over top of the sheet as well. On the sheet are photographs of six animals. There’s a dog, a cat, a duck, a pig, a horse, and of course the infamous cow. My job was to point to the animal’s picture and Maddie would tell me which animal it was. She identified all of them this way except for the cow. She called it a dog, refusing to accept it’s true name, which had me truly baffled.

So I tried a different tactic. I asked her what noise did that animal make, and she said “moo,” so it was clear she realized it wasn’t a dog. But why was she saying dog? So I went back after she said “moo” and asked her again the name of the animal. This time she promptly said cow. Perhaps it was just that triggering of the animal sound that made the difference. Cows do indeed say “moo.”

Then we moved on to the back of the cards that held the spelled out names of each animal, something that has long been her Achilles heel. She can generally recognize the individual letters but placing them together in words confuses her. That’s why she spent the better part of five minutes arguing with me that the one that said “cat” was in fact the one that said “cow.” She saw the “c” and didn’t look any further, which became frustrating for her and for me. Continue reading “Identifying the Cow”