Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Last year was our best year yet for meeting our goals in homeschooling. I foolishly thought this meant I was on the uphill climb and each year would get a little better. Boy was I wrong on that one (and you can stop laughing now).
It isn't that we aren't getting some things done, just not everything I had planned and hoped. (Again - stop laughing!) Not even some of the things we were able to accomplish last year and I'm having the darndest time trying to figure out why. I know that part of the reason is that Math takes so long now, all because of one child. The two oldest are taught Math by their father, so that leaves the three youngest for me. The two youngest can be done rather quickly, but for Nathan it takes much. much. much. more. time.
His head is so full of stories and thoughts and questions that to get him to focus and copy the problem onto his paper correctly takes a long. long. long. time. So I've taken to sitting with him and doing most all of it orally, only making him work on paper by himself a few each day. I know he can do the math, the trouble is the focus. I figure that's a skill he needs so I might as well work on it this way. But there are always tangents in his mind, that lead us off track, which are helpful, learning discussions, but don't make Math time any shorter.
Since this takes more of my time, I'm finding less time to get other stuff done. My 7 year old still isn't reading, but I can see signs that he is starting to understand words on a page. He always wants to point (or have me point) to the words while we sing our hymns during evening devotions,to the words during morning Matins, or during the Sunday morning liturgy. And today he was the first one to point out Mycenae on our Ancient Greece map in history when I asked where it was in relation to Crete. I know he is getting there, but I feel quite guilty not working with him as dutifully as I did some of his older siblings.
And I haven't taught Nathan and Abby nearly as well with spelling and grammar and simply reading aloud like I did with the older two. And I could go on and on. This adjusting to having to expect a lot out of the older ones while still trying to expect much/teach well the basics to the younger set is HARD! I can't mentally get my mind wrapped around it. Maybe I never will, and maybe it never can be done. And I even have David who does a lot of the teaching with the oldest two! Oh well, like Dori, I'll "just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming, swimming, swimming."