Monday, February 4, 2008

Lucia School has started

As some of you will know, I started homeschooling my two boys in the middle of last year after being dissatisfied with the school I had put them into after taking them out of a Steiner school.

I've had a number of people ask me how I've found homeschooling, and honestly I've had to say it's hard work. My first month was very stressful, I think because I felt I had to go boom, boom, boom through the subjects I'd chosen. I'm a bit more relaxed now. I know the subjects that I can just give the kids to do and there's no pressure. Poetry memorisation we do daily and both the kids love it. My older child likes starting with handwriting practise - he reckons it wakes him up and it's easy. My younger child still resists handwriting, so I'm not pushing it. Today he did some dot-to-dot pictures, practising his number recognition and ability to hold his pencil and draw straight lines from number to number.

I got stuck a bit last year on how to teach maths for both of them, so bought some books on how to teach their age groups (grades K-3 and 5-8). Both books are fantastic. They go through how children learn maths and what concepts they need to understand and how to teach those concepts. Today I got my younger child to show me how to add two different coloured blocks to five and make whatever pattern he liked with them and then explain to me how they add up to five. It was interesting to see that he had no problem with 2+3 and 2+2+1 combinations, but got a bit stuck and had to count out his row of 4 blocks in his 4+1 combination. And with my older child, I used the duplo blocks to show him how to find fractional parts of a whole number. We'd done it on paper last year, but doing it with the blocks added a whole new level of understanding and problems he got confused with last year he did first with the blocks and then was doing them in his head today. He just got stuck once we got to 6/8 of 32 - I'll have to do more work with rote memorisation of times tables with him, including dividing.

Ah, it's all fun. Getting my housework done is hard, though. But I seem to be getting better at fitting it in.

5 comment(s):

Andy said...

Hi Lucyna, myself and my three sibblings have been home-educated. I started when I was 10 and have to say that it's one of the best things that happened to me. Regards.

Barnsley Bill said...

Lucyna, if you want to make maths fun (oxymoron alert) buy a dart board.
get them playing darts. Countdown from 501 contains all the basics of maths without it being a maths lesson.
Will also help the old hand eye coordination. And remember drinking 10 pints is optional.

Anonymous said...

Yep, Lucyna the bull family homeschool four boys. Hang tough, it gets easier in time. i have a masters in Ed (don't laugh) and I struggled to come to grips with it. At about three months in we hit our stride and have never looked back. The bane of my life however is having to explain it to everyone. Used to drive me nuts, had to try and justify it. Now I just say, we can do it better. And its true.

Lucia Maria said...

Hi Andy, thanks!

BB, I'll keep the dartboard in mind. Probably when they are older, though. Even if my kids learn not to hit the cat, their friends might not be so careful.

Sittingbull, 4 boys!! I did read somewhere that it can take a year to get used to homeschooling. We kind of got really thrown last year when for a month, first one boy was sick, then the other and then me. The summer break has been great, though, and I feel much more ready for it now than I was last year. I even bit the bullet and ordered Prima Latina today.

ZenTiger said...

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

Or perhaps that should be on the Kiro thread? Although she is just as much a "Caveat emptor"

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