We’ve started doing things a little differently here at Sanderson Homeschool. We pick one subject for all kids and do 3-5 days’ worth of work in just one day. The next day, we do several days’ worth of another subject. Next day, next subject. You get it.
The kids have really taken to this method of schooling and while I realize it will be difficult to do this full time between ballet, homeschool group, library time, etc., I think that we work to make it happen as often as possible.
Why we started doing things this way:
I was spread too thin.
When you’re teaching multiple grade levels at once –and I’m talking grade levels that are really spread out since we have 2nd grade, 7th grade, and 10th grade (part time with my step-daughter) going on in our house–it’s very exhausting to spend every day bouncing back and forth not only between grade levels, but between subjects, too. No matter how organized you try to be, this is challenging.
We homeschool moms are just one person trying to fill the shoes of multiple teachers simultaneously and, to be honest, there are many days that leave me feeling like a failure. Well, maybe “failure” is a bit extreme, but I do often feel like I’m spread to thin and that this might be negatively affecting how much my children are actually learning on any given day.
Recently, I noticed there was a critical gap in my son’s understanding of math. It was causing him to “stumble” in his work occasionally and kept him from enjoying what he was working on. My solution was to dedicate one entire day to just the two of us (big sister was at her mom’s and little sister was gone for the day) sitting in the living room floor, working together through some math review to fill up that knowledge gap. It was our own little math workshop.
There were no tears. There was no frustrated holding of the foreheads. There was no anxiety.
There was laughter. There was learning. There was bonding.
And it was beautiful.
The next day comes. We try it again to see if it would go as well with another kid in the mix. It did!
That day, though I was back and forth from kid to kid as needed, I didn’t feel scattered. We weren’t rushed to move on to the next subject. I didn’t feel like the kids weren’t getting only a fraction of what they were to learn from their lessons because we were fully focused. Why? Because mom/teacher wasn’t having to shift gears from pre-algebra to spelling to literature to physical science and back all day long. Yes, I was back and forth between kids, but not between subjects.
I was able to keep a train of thought! And let’s face it, if mom/teacher can keep a train of thought, everyone is going to benefit.