HE blip/ worries. How do you plan your week?(14 Posts)
Having a blip 1 year into home ed....
Have been semi-structured in our approach, tending towards unschooling but fear that 6yo isn't making enough progress with reading & writing, and is fairly resistant to trying too.
Thinking of more structure...
Please me how you plan the academic content of your week. Do you plan and how far ahead?
Not sure when he might need to go into the school system because of parental job pressures so don't want him to be too far behind his peer group. Had been holding my nerve and waiting for him to be ready in his own time but lost my nerve a little now turned 6....
Ah 6 is so young, please don't worry. If in parts of Europe he wouldn't be starting to read and write til 7...
I unschool. I love it. DD loves it. She's 11 now and can read and write very well, her spelling and punctuation was crap until only recently, but she's an avid reader. Likes hunger games books and maze runner type things, it's true that they do just pick things up if left well alone.
All home edders have a wobble. It's usually once a year ha ha but then September comes around and you remember why you do it when all the school kids go back and everywhere is lovely and quiet and the weather is still nice!
My advice would be to just have a sit and think about what you truly feel is the right thing to do
As for planning the week, we plan around activities such as archery, climbing, home Es meet ups etc. No formal 'study' at all.
We are semi-structured. I aim for a minimum amount each day (barring big days out), only maybe 10 minutes each subject, and then if DS wants to he carries on. He also has free access to lots of educational fun stuff that he chooses to do as and when, e.g. he's currently sat reading the Songbirds books to himself, he has activity books, a board game that practices maths, etc. I find he goes through phases of being very very keen on a particular subject - at the moment it's reading, so I facilitate that, whilst keeping up a little bit of other subjects until he gets really keen on those in their turn.
We use Life of Fred for maths, so no real planning required, just trying to persuade him to stick to no more than 2 chapters at a time! I often add in other activities that suit the current topic too if I come across them, e.g. skip counting dot-to-dot printed off t'internet.
Reading I just suggest the next level of books whenever necessary, put the relevant Alphablocks on now and again, and suggest Teach Your Monster To Read sometimes.
History, science etc, I have a list on the computer of what I want to cover in what order, and for the first handful of topics I have a list of resources for that topic (lots of them from pinterest). We use a box system - one box per day with his activities for that day in. Maybe once a week I put stuff in his boxes for that week, aiming for a mix of types of activities. It's all very organic, in case of illness or last minute invite to something that'll cut down how much time we have,a box can just roll on to the next available day. Simples.
I think you need to untangle how much of this is about keeping him up with peers incase of going to school and how much is a wobble.
The beauty of home education is that you can account for your child's individual development. Wobbles are normal, we all get them no matter how long we've been doing this. Learning to trust your child's own developmental timeframe (which does not mean not supporting or encouraging!) is one of the big hurdles you need to jump to home educate.
In a way, whether you intend to send him to school at some point or not is irrelevant. You cannot make a child learn to read or write if they are not developmentally ready and pushing your son into academic learning too early will only do 2 things: make him resent you & home education and make him hate reading/writing.
So, what to do? Well I would initially look at what activities you are trying to get him to do that he doesn't want to. Learning to read is a journey that should be pretty enjoyable for your child. the best way to get your child to read is to read to them......lots, whenever they ask (within reason) & get to know what books they enjoy.
If you really insist on phonics, fine but make it enjoyable. By that I mean find how your son likes to learn and what his interests are and build that into the activities. For example if I made my son sit at the table with a phonics workbook he would rebel, but he will happily sit outside with me and fill our patio with chalk drawings of 'th' words.
My daughter learnt to read just before she turned 8, but she went from zero to hero overnight. I could not tear a book away from her now if I tried, she is a fanatical reader and her writing is catching up fast.
My son is still on the road to reading at nearly 9, but he is not far off. He's on the cusp, and the best thing is he loves books.
I think jobs aside, you need to reflect on how committed you are to home ed in the long term. Are there others ways you can 'work' and home ed if need be? It will challenge your idea of learning, how children learn and when. You will have wobbles, a lot, but it is a truly amazing journey and that will gift you with the thrill of seeing your child reach his potential and grow to be the person he needs and was born to be.
Very structured learning can work well for some families, in fact my daughter enjoys structure now she 10, but would have previously turned her back to me (literally) if I tried to teach her anything before now. Formal learning when its enforced can really backfire, and I have seen it happen a lot.
When I taught my dd to read we used bath letters to make words in the bath and had magnet letters for the fridge. Played eye spy. Had an alphabet bingo game, think it was an orchard garden one. Trips to the library. Reading bedtime stories. Having lots of books in the house, I found the songbird and Oxford reading tree ones good, got quite a good deal from the Book People. The main thing is to make it fun and enjoyable, not like a chore.
As others have said, he'll learn when he's ready.
Thought I might give you an update, after so many of you kindly replied to my post when I was having a big blip with HE.
DS now 6 1/2 and his reading has come on in leaps and bounds in the past 6 months and now reading quite reasonably. We worked through the Songbirds phonics series and then did absolutely no reading for 3 months and he leaped forwards! Amazing what they can do when they are ready! Just hoping for the same with numeracy now!
Fantastic! Thanks for the update. That is great news.
So glad I found this page! I'm
Encouraging 5 year old ds to read but he resists mainly,
FrutiFlutey, you might find this reassuring, even if "unschooling" isn't your preferred approach: www.psychologytoday.com/blog/freedom-learn/201002/children-teach-themselves-read
The author makes some interesting points. For example, he observes that while schoolchildren who cannot read have increasing trouble accessing the school curriculum as they get older, HE kids have no such problem. There appears to be no ideal age for learning to read. There are many ways kids approach it.
I've found that the more I associate with HE families whose children have learned to read later than the usual age at which schoolchildren are taught to read, the more relaxed I feel about it.
Loved seeing this update Rhabks for sharing.
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