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I have a 5 year old Daughter in Kindergarten a 4 year Son old doing Pre k a two year old Son running around and another Baby on the way (due in around 5 months). I am lost on how to be in all places at once! How do I teach Kindergarten to one child Pre K to another and run around after a 2 year old destroying the house. I find it hard to keep everyone concentrated with all that is going on around them. Ill be trying to teach one and the other needs help or has completed a task and is wanting me at the same time. All the while the two year old is running around making lots of noise and tearing apart the house. I don't know how to Multi Task well enough to do it all. I am worried how much worse it will be with a new Baby needing me as well. Please I'm sure I'm not the only one going through this. Is there any suggestions. I feel like I'm failing. Also My one son who is doing Pre K is very hard to motivate and has always done things at his own pace(which is slow) he also has a hard time comprehending what you are asking him to do a lot of the time. So we are trying Pre K with him so that when he has to do Kindergarten he will have already began to learn and might not fall behind. Sigh anyhow please any suggestions would be great
I can sympathize! I have a 6yo in grade one, a 5yo in Kindergarten, a 2yo, and a 1yo. Generally, I bring my oldest to the table first while allowing her brother to play quietly until we get reading out of the way (she needs the most concentration for reading). Then we move onto the subjects they do together (most subjects other than reading and math), I try to include the 2yo in these as much as possible as well (if they're painting, she does too, etc). Then I save math until nap time on most days, unless the babies are being especially cooperative.
A couple of things that you might want to try, that I've found useful, are toddler busy boxes/bags/activities. We're discovered that pipe cleaners and a strainer can provide hours of enjoyment! Another thing that has been a lifesaver for us is babywearing, we love the Moby when they're tiny and the Ergo as they get bigger
Thank you I will have to try toddler busy boxes/bags/activities. I tried to involve him in coloring when the other two were at the table trying to do there work. But he started scribbling on his high chair instead and then eating the crayons! UGH. Also how do you get anything else done in the day? I try to school them together as I still need time to clean, prepare meals ect. I thought about doing them separately like one in the morning and one in the afternoon but I would loose pretty much my whole day. My toddle keep changing his napping schedule and has just changed into a toddler bed. So I am feeling the craziness of no longer having a baby jail LOL... what sort of things do you do with all of them learning together?
I make sure my other children are occupied before I move on to a child who needs focused attention. I have also been working to teach my younger children to wait for me to be available, as I cannot just drop everything at their beck & call at all times. It just doesn't work. My littlest is (almost) 1yo, and plays well at my feet. My 3yo sometimes wants to do school, sometimes doesn't, and REALLY plays well without much guidance. My 5yo is learning how to work more independently. I can assign her a section of penmanship or phonics and walk away for most things except math and reading! Those are 100% focused time.
With my 3yo, the ONLY time I do anything schoolish is if he asks, and my plan for next year is the same-- I'm not sure I'm going to get him anything beyond what I have for my daughter for next year. We will be using The Weaver Curriculum, so he can combine into the kindergarten goals when he wants to (or needs to if it is a field trip) and when he isn't interested it doesn't matter. K4 isn't a grade really anyway. Childhood is so short, they deserve time to play and enjoy being a kid.
Actually, this year we are using a living literature approach (a pseudo Ambleside Online "Year 0.5"), and my 3yo likes to listen to most of the books we are reading most days as well, so I already combine him into my 5yo's schooling plans.
Cleaning happens with the kids involved-- they are responsible for loading the washer (they can't reach the dryer-- they are stacked), washing dishes (they think this is a game or something-- they volunteer!!!), clearing the table, sweeping the floor, picking up toys, tidying their room, and putting their clothing away. The baby kind of wanders along and helps when she feels like it (and hinders the rest of the time, hehe). When I need to keep the baby out of things so we can be more successful, or because she is being particularly fussy, I put her in my Ergo or other carrier/wrap for a while and get things done that way.
This book comes to my mind. I know you probably think reading a book is the last thing you have time for but she has a lot of charts to help you have a good routine. I don't know how structured you like your time to be but this is a good start. I bought the book because she homeschools 5 kids, has a clean home, healthy meals and said she still has over an hour to spend of one on one time with each kid each day. She said the only thing she hasn't found time to do is dust on top the piano. It was a good read. She is a Christian women and I don't know if that offends you ( you never know these days) but she does incorporate her faith into her book.
I have a friend who has 2 DDs (1 is 14 the other is 10), homeschools them, but also babysits 3 other kids on alternating days. The baby ( 4 months old) she does school when he naps (a lot of the time) or baby wears him. The other 2 older kids she watches she'll either set them up with an educational video while she does some work with her 2 or does as much school as she can when they nap. And she has the busy basket to keep them occupied or puts them in the high chair with a snack.
I hope you find something that works for you.
I'm struggling this year because I've been sick with m/s that I feel I'm not doing enough with DD right now. But we also started doing some of her 5th grade work over the summer so we could take time off if we needed it, so I know we're not really behind (yet). But come March/April/May, I don't know how it's going to go.