Mea culpa! It's been nearly a year since my post about Stephan's (numbers in four languages), and I never did update it with Joseph's response. It was an immediate hit, and is still one of Joseph's very favorite books. Dots book
Here are a few videos showing Joseph and the book in action:
The book arrives!
In German (Swiss German, that is) with a brief excursion into Japanese near the end of the video (5:30)
In English, with a brief excursion at the end into Russian, a language Stephan inexplicably left out of the book...
And finally, his most recent effort:
The book has proved very durable under heavy use, and if the $70 cost seems extravagant, I'd say Joseph has definitely gotten his parents' money's worth already.
I didn't realize how easy it is to count in Japanese, especially if you've done Right Start Math. "Four ten six" is exactly what it is.
Now if only the Japanese didn't change the counting depending on whether the objects are tall and skinny, or flat, or days, etc. I guess every language must have its complications. Easy numbers, but what you count makes a difference. No conjugations, but the language depends on the status of the speaker and listener -- and between male and female.
Thanks for publishing the update! You are right: Joseph has certainly gotten a lot of mileage out of the full length $70 version. I still find it hard to believe that our son can write "95 96 97 98 99 100" on a blackboard at 28 months. Nevertheless, for many kids, the
shorter $25 dots counting book version may be a safer investment and a good gauge for their interest in numbers.
I wrote this comment on Facebook, and can't resist making it do double duty:
Lest you get the impression that our grandson is some sort of genius -- well, ALL our grandchildren are geniuses, but that's beside the point :) -- think, for a moment, about what you love, and how you spend your time. Joseph loves numbers. He spends hours every day thinking about them, playing with them, attempting to write them. Like any child, he loves to be read to, but he's more likely to ask you to count for and with him, in whatever language you happen to know. (That comes from being brought up in Switzerland; the language part, that is, not the numbers.) He enjoys playing with Legos, but is likely to be found counting them while he builds. Numbers are the sea in which he swims; why shouldn't he be extraordinarily good with them?
The real question for me is, how are we spending our hours? How are our children spending theirs? Ashley Locheed's hours are heavily weighted in favor of music -- and she's very, very good at what she does. Thomas Edison was right: Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.
Your comment resonates with something I read in an interview with
Markus Hengstschläger, an Austrian geneticist. He argues that our society spends far too much time trying to shore up weaknesses and far too little time trying to further strengths. His example: if a child comes home with two As and a C on his report card, most parents will worry about improving the C. Very few will have the wisdom to ask how the As can be improved (partly because the grade scale has an upper limit it shouldn't have). Hengstschläger argues that it's counterproductive for a C in Spanish to keep a brilliant mathematician from MIT, or a C in math to keep a talented physician from med school.
In other words: we'll feed Joseph numbers according to his appetite.