Anna is starting to show a real interest in learning to read. Helped by her new preschool she is constantly thinking about words, and in particular asking what letters they start with. Examples are, Luh, Luh, leave Mummy alone and O, O, Oh My God stop talking.
To encourage this, and to try and make up for a woeful lack of hands-on parenting in the last few months (thanks Lucy!) I have started doing treasure hunts around the house. Each clue is a piece of paper with a word on it, usually something simple that she can sound out phonetically, such as BALL (oh come on, who doesn't have a giant Pilates ball in their living room?!). This has proved to be so much more successful than just sitting together and helping her read a book. A treasure hunt has purpose, and more importantly, a reward of a few jelly beans at the end.
Ah, bribery, teacher of many a child.
After one of the hundred million treasure hunts I have been asked to devise over the last, morning (you think I jest), I told Anna it was quiet time, and that Mummy needed a rest (read: cocktail). Not realizing I had left her alone in our bed with a pen.
This could have been disastrous, not least for my lovely embroidered Pottery Barn duvet cover - one of the last vestiges of wealthier times. But no, another triumph for absentee parenting! While left to her own devices, Anna had decided to construct her own treasure hunting.
Reading to writing in one fell swoop. I bring you:
The slightly more obscure "BANANA" (great drawing)
and my personal favourite "HORSE", a clue found on her My Little Pony, and not (if you follow my twisted mind, on LK's stack of Playboys....
OK, maybe it's too early to call Cambridge, but Oxford surely?!