So, the subtitle of this post could easily be, “Don’t forget that you’re children are often right.” Maggie has recently become very interested in Scrabble, especially since I’ve started playing with friends on Facebook. I have to confess that I wasn’t all that encouraging. Even when I went out and purchased a new game set for Steve and I to play, I still discouraged her from trying to play. “We’ve got Bananagrams!” I’d tell her. “Really, I think you’ll like that better. Scrabble is really too hard, you’ll only get frustrated.” But she was very insistent, so I reluctantly started up a game with her, on the condition that we wouldn’t keep score.
Mommy, Mommy, when will you learn? We had such fun playing. We did decide to play with all our tiles turned up, so that I could help her when she got stuck. This cooperative approach has worked well so far, and we’ve continued to play that way. And yes, we are keeping score. Despite my deep desire to encourage cooperativity over competition, it’s just waaay more fun when you can work to get a big score for a great word. Plus, I realized that keeping score also introduces MATH into the game, which I hadn’t even thought of. It’s like the unschooler’s dream activity–literacy, math, and fun all wrapped into one game.
It amazes me to realize that we now have literally a lifetime ahead of playing Scrabble together. What fun!