Friday, January 16, 2009

No more preschool for Andrew...

Well, we officially withdrew Andrew from his Tues/Thurs preschool this week. He was consistently not wanting to go. I'd ask him in the morning, "Do you want to go to preschool?" And he would say, "No! Me-you mommy, me-you!" Thinking he might get over it and remembering all the fun he had the first few weeks I took him anyway for a couple weeks. When it didn't change and he was consistently saying no and resisting I realized that this wasn't a good idea! His speech has taken off since being at preschool and it is either a coincidence or preschool really did help. At any rate, I will continue to work with him every day and we will continue to look into some speech therapy for him.

I'm actually really happy to have back home with me all the time, despite the ease of homeschooling those two mornings he was at preschool.

Speaking of homeschooling, I'm doing a lot of research trying to figure out what I'll do next year. I've done a Charlotte Mason style home school this year with lots of reading and multiple subjects with short lessons. My 4th grader's independent work is only 45 minutes a day. I think that I will need to increase that next year. I've combined many subjects for my 4th and Kindergartner and this means my Kindergartner is doing sit down school for probably a total of 2 to 2 1/2 hours a day. His actual math, handwriting, reading is only about 30 minutes but with the other read-alouds, science, hymns, bible study, etc. it totals 2 hours or so.

He says things like, "I don't like school." "It takes too long." And he is constantly wiggling, moving, grabbing things, getting up, etc. So I feel like I need to separate his schooling from Isaac's schooling a LOT more. I don't really think I should spend next year more than 1 to 1 1/2 hours with him and I think I need to combine his schooling with Serena (5) and Gidstina (6) and do their schooling while Isaac is doing his independent work.

This is what I am imagining school next year looking like:

After breakfast, bible, hymns, poetry reading, character study all together at the table. This will take about an hour or so.

Than give the little guys, Micah, Serena and Gidstina a 30 minute play-break while I get Isaac started with maybe a Math lesson and go over what he needs to do.

Then Isaac will go do his independent work which I think in 5th grade could take 1 to 1 1/2 hours. During this time I will work with Micah, Serena and Gidstina on handwriting, math, phonics.

Then I'm not sure about history, geography and science. I don't really want to separate them out for these subjects but my K's don't need to go as deeply in these subjects as Isaac, my 4th grader, does. So I'm torn.

We are doing Apologia's Exploring Creation with Botany right now and it is WAY too much information for my 5 year old Micah. He just doesn't need to know right now what an angiosperm and what a gymnosperm is. It just doesn't seem right to make him sit through these detailed lessons! But it does seem right for Isaac to because he is interested and ready!

Maybe I'm just running into common issues because I'm trying to combine subjects for a 5 year old and a 10 year old and that is a wide gap. And I think I'm realizing there is only so much that you can combine with these age groups. Which makes it harder for me but a reality.

1 comment:

Bookworm said...

Hi Abby. :-)

I have a suggestion. You can try it and see how it works for you. I do realize your situation is unique, so please understand this is only a suggestion and I do not claim to have any answers!!!!

This is what I do. (My boys are 6 and 8 yo.) this week's lesson on clouds is a perfect example. I read a book called "It Looked Like Spilt Milk." Very simple picture book with surprise ending for the boys to learn it was clouds. This was my "introduction" to clouds. Then, I read a book titled "The Shapes in the Sky" which introduced us to 4-5 types of clouds. This book was a little more advanced. Just right for both of them. By time I finished these two books, My 6 yo was ready to hop up and go draw some clouds. So, while he drew clouds, I stayed on the couch with my 8 yo and we read a complex book about clouds. This re inforced what we had just read in the other book while adding to his knowledge with more information. My 6 yo cant wait to make clouds out of paper, paint, glitter and other craft amterials. While my 8 yo (and my 6 yo) cant wait to actually make real clouds using some experiments in two of our books! When we were done reading the cloud books, I asked my 8 yo some questions and he answered with a little narration so as to cement the lesson into him.

I'd also suggest breaking their lessons up throughout the day. I know CM suggests gettign it all done in the mornings and having the afternoons to do their own thing. But, we have found that if we do school all day with break in between we are all much happier and peaceful. It has really reduced the stress significantly. I am no longer pressured to get it all done by X time. We get it all done in a day...and soemtimes we even do what's left after dinner! The boys LOVE to read to their daddy and for him to read to them!

Just some thoughts. I hope this gives you some ideas to ponder.

Love and Joy in Jesus,