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decisions and questions


Forum: Homeschooling

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  • 1 Post By BensMom

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  #1  
July 16th, 2012, 06:40 PM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 559
After lots of research, thought, prayer and observation, I've discovered that Mercy Jane doesn't need pre - k at all! She is really ready for and craving more advanced learning. This just confirms for me that homeschooling is the right decision for us. We're both really excited to get started.
I think she's ready for 1st grade in most subjects but we'll probably do a mix of kindergarten/1st grade just to make sure she doesn't have any gaps. Still trying to decide on curriculum. There's just so much to choose from!

Mercy is a very laid back and observant girl. She will sit and read with me or draw pictures for HOURS at a time. She's always telling me stories and asking me wonderful questions that I can't answer. (at least not without my good friend google )

Nathaniel on the other hand, is a typical, very, very active toddler/young preschooler. He's still working on the basic pre-academic skills and has a pretty significant speech delay. His body always needs to be busy doing something. Even his most favorite videos will only give me 15 minutes of quiet (if I'm lucky) before he's jumping on the furniture.

Do any of you have any tips for me on teaching two kids with drastically different learning styles/academic levels? I want to find a balance where I can meet both their needs without driving myself crazy. Any possibility of one curriculum working for both?

*As a side note, I had my first interview with a potential mother's helper today. She was a very sweet grandmotherly type who used to be a preschool teacher. The conversation went well until I brought up homeschooling. She's definitely not a fan.
"Those kids need to be in preschool so they can learn to socialize with other children." She even laughed at me when I said that Mercy was ready for 1st grade. "It's sweet that you think she's so smart. But she's only 4."
Yes and you've only known her for 15 minutes! End of conversation crazy lady. Thanks for coming.
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  #2  
July 16th, 2012, 08:46 PM
BensMom's Avatar Ephesians 4:29
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: The Lonestar State
Posts: 50,214
Oh, yeah... you'll (probably) have to find someone much younger if you don't want that response. Sorry!

My kids are also very different. My oldest is the calm, academic type, and my youngest is the one getting into trouble when my back is turned. The same curricula may or may not work for both. It really just depends. For now, you should consider buying/making some "special" things for him to do that he can ONLY do during school time. Let him know they're special, and he can't use them without asking. Maybe some funky kind of crayons, a (sealed, dry) water bottle full of sand and "buried treasure" (paperclips, craft jewels, etc.), and things like that. Google "tot school" or "tot boxes" for lots of great ideas.

For her, you may find that you're jumping and skipping and stopping a lot at first. If you come across something she has clearly mastered, skip it. Don't make school boring. If something needs a little work, don't do everything the curriculum suggests. Just do what's necessary to get her up to speed. If you come to something she clearly has no clue about, take your time with it, and don't get frustrated. There will almost certainly be some things that are way ahead, right on target, and perhaps even a little behind at this age because skills vary SO WIDELY in the 4 year old age group. If someone tells you she can't do something because she's x-years old (no matter the age), ignore them, tell them the kids in China learned it 2 years ago, or tell them she picked it up while watching TV and eating Fruit Loops. "I tried to stop her, but she grabbed the dictionary and locked herself in the bathroom!" LOL!!

Seriously, though, just get lots of great books with rich vocabulary and thought-provoking pictures, and tie them into whatever you're learning. Ask questions like "how do you think ___ felt when that happened" or "what do you think will happen next" or (for non-fiction) "how do you think that works?" Learn from life, and answer everything you can, even if you have to use google. (I finally just taught my kid to do it himself after a while. LOL!)
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  #3  
July 18th, 2012, 09:00 AM
2pinks&ablue's Avatar Chantelle
Join Date: May 2007
Location: NB, Canada
Posts: 36,142
My children are very different too, my oldest (almost 5) loves seat work and asks for it constantly, he brother (although only pre-k now so we aren't doing much "seat work") needs more hands on, he's high energy and loves to be moving all.the.time so I know I'm going to need a new approach in a year or two for him!

I also agree that you'll be doing a lot of jumping around in the beginning- at least I know we do. At first we were in pre-k, K, and 1st grade stuff at once depending on the subject/topic but now we're mostly in K and 1st.
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  #4  
July 18th, 2012, 06:35 PM
in_mommy's Avatar I am just me
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 14,873
Sounds like that lady didnt get the job lol!!! More than likely your not going to be able to do the extact same things with them since they sound like they are opposites education wise. You can get the same curriculum and make it more advanced, but if your daughter is more ready for 1st grade work and he is still learning letters and the very basics, you are probably going to have a harder time trying to use the same and adapt it to each of them.
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  #5  
July 18th, 2012, 10:27 PM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 559
Quote:
Originally Posted by BensMom View Post
the kids in China learned it 2 years ago, or tell them she picked it up while watching TV and eating Fruit Loops. "I tried to stop her, but she grabbed the dictionary and locked herself in the bathroom!" LOL!!
I can totally picture her locking herself in a room somewhere with the dictionary!

Yeah. Crazy lady didn't get the job. I had another interview today but I don't think she's going to work out either. I think I need to find a 16 - 17 year old homeschooler.

I guess I should really just focus on Mercy's needs with curriculum for now. Maybe in a year or two I can try teaching them together. For now I love the tot box idea. Thanks. And thanks for the warning about jumping around a lot.
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~Mother of Miracles






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