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View Full Version : Weekly Poll: Which subject do you find the most difficult to homeschool?



Topsy
10-27-2010, 10:14 AM
Probably by now, most of you have figured out that I'm a words person. I love writing, words, and even grammar. I'm the epitome of a word nerd. Now usually, a word nerd is terrified of math in any form, but I actually liked math in school (okay, except for Geometry). But my real downfall? Science. In any form. Hated in school. Still hate it. Naturally, that is the subject that I find the most difficult to homeschool because I simply have no passion for it.

Sometimes, though, the subject you did poorest in throughout your own school career is the one you get the most excited about teaching (and learning along with) your children. And sometimes, even though you like a subject very much, it is your child that just isn't "getting it", which makes it more difficult to teach.

So let's see if there is one subject overall that is more difficult than others for homeschoolers, or if we're just all over the map (as usual!) :)

MamaB2C
10-27-2010, 10:54 AM
I actually chose wrong in the poll, I blame the cold meds!

I find music/arts the most difficult. I am not musically inclined, nor do I really care about music as more than entertainment/background noise. Luckily hubby is a drummer and loves music in general so has a lot more passion for the subject. As for the arts, I am a crafter and hubby does woodwork, but neither of us is really art-literate. We have some friends and family members who are artists, so depend on them to some extent.

hockeymom
10-27-2010, 11:03 AM
Oh definitely math for me. I haven't figured out math since the second grade, and it leaves me in a total panic. DS is very math and science oriented and has all sorts of questions I can't possibly answer (to be fair, most of his scientific questions are so detailed they could only be answered by a scientist anyway). He's forever testing me on math too, and of course I can't let on what a miserable failure I am at that subject. At least science--for now--is interesting to me, at least until next year when we go on to Chemistry. He's beside himself with excitement, but it's a huge yawn for me. At least I'm a better actress than I ever thought possible! :)

We've recently switched from MEP to Math Mammoth and I'm thankful for the extra instruction. There are so many positive comments here about T4L that I might go that route someday for math, if hubby agrees to an online curriculum. Anything to take it out of my hands would be a bonus for DS, I think, so I don't end up confusing him. That's my big fear, because it happened to me as a kid and I can practically still taste the tears that plagued me from grade 2-12.

hockeymom
10-27-2010, 11:07 AM
I actually chose wrong in the poll, I blame the cold meds!



I'm sorry to hear you're not feeling well, Brandi. I'm finally healing from a major sinus infection so I can totally relate. I've lived on a steady diet of sudafed and motrin for almost 2 weeks now. Ugh. I did wonder about your answer in the poll! :)

Get some rest--hope you feel better soon! *virtually sending you homemade noodle soup*

wild_destiny
10-27-2010, 11:27 AM
High school level math, for sure!!! We are struggling with that right now. Even with a solution manual, my son wants to know a lot about WHY something is or is not that way, or why this problem was solved differently than that one, and so on, and I am frankly NOT the one to ask (neither is his dad), so it is an issue that we are desperately trying to answer.

*Hope you get to feeling well, Brandi. And glad you are feeling better, Hockeymom. Sick time stinks!

schwartzkari
10-27-2010, 11:57 AM
Math has never been my strong point. That is why I recently ordered Math-U-See for my daughter! I am fine teaching the basics of math, telling time and counting money but anything above that, I'm going to need some help with.

MamaB2C
10-27-2010, 11:59 AM
Thanks guys, it's fairly mild as far as colds go, but that yucky beginning stage with the sore throat and congestion!

Hey, since we all have differing areas of strength/weakness, what if we started some sticky "Ask science questions", "ask History questions" threads to help each other out?

Pefa
10-27-2010, 01:01 PM
Writing. I hate writing. Hate the analyzing of literature (which totally seems to kill any joy in the actual literature.)

On the other hand chemistry is soooooooooo much fun. Biology is messy which is fun. Biochemistry is cool and physics just is what is so that's totally fun too.

hockeymom
10-27-2010, 01:26 PM
That sounds like fun! Although, we'd ask a lot more questions than we could ever answer! :)

(I meant to quote Brandi "Hey, since we all have differing areas of strength/weakness, what if we started some sticky "Ask science questions", "ask History questions" threads to help each other out? )

MikeHigginbottom
10-27-2010, 01:27 PM
Hi all,

I've not posted for a while but I'm up for offering assistance here. It seems like a lot of people really struggle with maths but I love it and it's always been my forte. So, if anyone needs a hand just email me and I'll do what I can to help out.

Regards,

Mike Higginbottom

Busygoddess
10-27-2010, 02:12 PM
I had to go with Other.

Ok, here's the thing, there is no one subject that I don't feel comfortable "teaching" the kids. I do have minor issues within a few subjects, though:

Math - I've always been good at it, but hate it because it's so boring, dull, cut & dry, black & white, which is so not my thing. I'm fine doing Math with Jay, because he likes it. I'll likely hand it over to hubby once he starts Algebra, since hubby actually likes Math. It's always been a pain to do Math with Dea, though, because she hates it as much as I do. Like me, she's great at it, just hates it.

Music - I can do Music Appreciation, Music History, and Singing. Unfortunately, I can't read muisc, so need to use a program for that. Hubby takes care of teaching Guitar & helps with the technical stuff.

Car Maint. - one area of Home Ec/Lifeskills that we cover. I'm not a car person. I know some basics & have done some car work. Hubby is the car guy, though, so he takes care of this one.

We've yet to come across an area that either Hubby or I (or both) can't handle, though (unless you count that Dea will be doing high school Chem at CC to get a full lab course).

leav97
10-27-2010, 02:17 PM
So far we've been lucky. I love science and math. My husband love history and music. Neither of us are wonderful in English, art or PE. We've outsourced art and PE and we're good enough to handle 1st grade English. I do worry a little about upper level English though.

hockeymom
10-27-2010, 02:17 PM
Hi all,

I've not posted for a while but I'm up for offering assistance here. It seems like a lot of people really struggle with maths but I love it and it's always been my forte. So, if anyone needs a hand just email me and I'll do what I can to help out.

Regards,

Mike Higginbottom

LOL Mike, we do math from around 8-9am. Wanna come over?

farrarwilliams
10-27-2010, 04:17 PM
Really? Math? I am so not a "math person" but I love math the most. I discovered this when I was teaching middle school and unexpectedly got handed the remedial math class. Teaching math is so straightforward yet fun. I love it. Of course, ask me again in six or seven years and we'll see if I still feel the same once the kids are past algebra I.

I say foreign language. Unless you're actually fluent, it's just a tough thing to do yourself. At least, that's what I've found.

Teri
10-27-2010, 06:20 PM
I would have to say math also. Since we have Teaching Textbooks and it is out of my hands now, I like it a lot better. It's not that I even find it difficult. I tend to get impatient and feel like I don't explain it well. TT has been wonderful for us!

InstinctiveMom
10-27-2010, 06:43 PM
English/history is my forte, math/science is my Loverly Husband's, so we have the basics pretty well-covered. It's music and 'The Arts' that I have the most trouble with. I can CRAFT, but I am not an Artist, if you get my meaning (you have to say 'artist' with a snotty French accent).
~h

wild_destiny
10-27-2010, 08:24 PM
That is a generous offer, Mike. Thank you for extending it. We will probably pester you when we hit a bump in the math road. ;)

outskirtsofbs
10-27-2010, 08:42 PM
I picked Science--I'm getting ready to buy some type of Science related software from Amazon. We never do enough of Science and I find it so incredibly boring. I can't get my daughter to write for anything either. I'm going to have to buy something for music, also. We live in such a small town. No outside options around here. That would be great about the question/answer post thing. And that Mike--What a guy! DD is only in 2nd grade right now, but I'm already having nightmares about Algebra and am trying to gear up for it early.

allisonsracquet
10-27-2010, 08:51 PM
Wow Mike! So nice!!!!!
I had to choose foreign language...I don't speak one, and I am struggling with how I will teach one (pronunciation, etc). Maybe we will ultimately end up learning together? Since this is my first year homeschooling, I put off a foreign language figuring I would get my feet under me and get a solid foundation. However, next year I am really going to have to make some sort of a decision (suggestions welcome).
Math was a close second...but at least I have SOME background in math (and there are a lot of things online to help). Since I am only teaching sixth grade I can keep up with Math for now...but in the future there may be some issues.
For anyone that hates teaching literature, I have a complete vocab list and questions and just ordered the teaching aid for "Johnny Tremain", if anyone is interested.

JinxieFox
10-27-2010, 09:12 PM
For us, the most difficult is history, only because my son's interest waxes and wanes based on the subject matter. When he is interested, and we are having fun, he does very well. But when he is disinterested, I might as well give up.

It's funny to see how many people say math is the most difficult. For us, it is the easiest, because my son *adores* math. So when I am having problems with history (or any other topic), I think about how fortunate I am that he loves and excels in math. :)

I should add that I don't find anything *personally* difficult to homeschool. I love it all. If I could spend the rest of my life in school, reading books, studying, and more, I would! When it comes to math (which is my weak subject), I simply have the attitude that I will learn along with my son when it comes to things I don't understand (such as algebra, calculus and trig).

justcatie
10-27-2010, 11:19 PM
For me, it's hands down MATH. actually, I have a hard time with anything relating to algebra. I kick serious butt in geometry, though. Thank goodness my husband is the math person, and my sister is high school Math teacher (masters in Math) so it all works out.

DH finds it hard to teach grammar/LA/writing. I am the wordsmith around here so he leaves teaching that to me.

Together I guess we make a pretty good team. :)

hockeymom
10-28-2010, 06:00 AM
I picked Science--I'm getting ready to buy some type of Science related software from Amazon. We never do enough of Science and I find it so incredibly boring. I can't get my daughter to write for anything either. I'm going to have to buy something for music, also. We live in such a small town. No outside options around here. That would be great about the question/answer post thing. And that Mike--What a guy! DD is only in 2nd grade right now, but I'm already having nightmares about Algebra and am trying to gear up for it early.

Do you enjoy the Magic School Bus series? It's a great way to get into science without getting TOO into it. It's easy to use them as a jumping off point--take a MSB book about weather, say, and add in a bunch more books on the subject. We also like the RSO curriculum for a spine. It doesn't get detailed enough for DS, who loves science, but it's a great way to introduce the subject and can be easily added to with library books. We're doing Earth and Space this year (grade 2) and Chemistry next year. There are lots of hands on experiments, which I normally don't like to do, but these are painless and so far don't require a lot of extra "stuff".

Another idea is to just go to the library and let her pick out something interesting and see where it leads. I don't think science needs to be taught in any particular order at this age--I wouldn't spend the time on it that we do except that it's DS's total passion.

Hope this gives you some ideas!

inmom
10-28-2010, 07:24 AM
I'm definitely the propeller-head in the family (physics & math degree), so I can teach math and science in my sleep. How to develop my teens' writing is what I find most difficult. I'm never sure when we look it over if my assessments are on target or off-base.

I'm comfortable with musics (had piano myself for years and played 3 other instruments as a kid--kids have taken piano for 5 years), but the best we do with visual arts are trips to local art museums. I am HORRIBLE at even having the kids do basic crafts.

Riceball_Mommy
10-28-2010, 09:09 AM
Right now we're only in Kindergarten, and it's our second year (first official), so it's not really about what's more difficult for me but what sends me into more of a panic on a regular basis. I'm unsure about almost everything we do, but teaching reading is causing me some panic. I keep worrying that our curriculum is moving to fast, that I'm not teaching it right. It's so important and I'm always worried I'm screwing it up.
I'm sure when my daughter gets older, I'll have trouble teaching grammar. I always had troubles with spelling, grammar and general organization in my writing. Those should all be pretty difficult for me to teach because of it.

dottieanna29
10-28-2010, 12:08 PM
I put Music/The Arts because neither DH nor I are artistically inclined at all. I can read music which I suppose will come in handy but I'm also completely tone deaf so..... DS is also very sensitive to certain sounds and hates listening to music so I'm not sure how it will work out when we starting getting into it. I'm sure I'll end up out-sourcing music lessons and trying to buy a really good art program.

I suppose I could also put PE since I tend to be very lazy :p but DS is in soccer and gymnastics, dd is in gymnastics. There are so many programs around that I'm not worried about this at all.

Foreign Language will be hard since I don't know anyone who speaks another language but there are some good programs available.

Math, Science, Language Arts, History don't worry me at all. DH and I can both do math at least to the Calculus level and dh can do way beyond that. I have a Biology degree and he has a Chemistry degree (and is very good at Physics) so we're good there. To me, History and Language Arts are "book" topics. It's all about reading and remembering, not so much figuring things out, so they don't worry me either.

av8rix
10-28-2010, 12:14 PM
Music is very hard for me to teach. I can teach appreciation without any hiccups, but I cannot read music. I play 4 different instruments, so some might find it odd that I cannot read music - I play by ear. DH is a drummer, and even he finds it hard to teach. We cheated, and now pay for piano lessons once a week, and a music theory class once a month (only $5 a class, so money well spent!)

Stephany
10-29-2010, 01:04 AM
I am a biology/nutrition major so I could help out with science. I really hate PE. I like to hike and swim so we get by but I am useless as far as organize sports go. Can anyone teach me how to dribble?

Stella M
10-29-2010, 01:44 AM
It was a toss up between maths and science. I went with science b/c none of my kids are all that interested and neither am I, so it's a double struggle to get motivated. High school maths is hard too :(

All the rest is easy, either b/c I like it, one or more of the kids likes it or because it's easy to outsource!

Miguels mommy
10-30-2010, 12:44 PM
Foreign language, or life skills will be the hardest. I'm the math wiz. DH is the English guy. We both love science and history but DS hates experiments. We use sports for PE, and band for music next year. Art we love, crafts not so much. DH is fluent in Spanish however he's helped me fail college spanish 3 times and is horrible at teaching it. Life skills both of us are lacking in which is probably the most important skills to know to raise a happy healthy Adult so we're looking for outside sources now.

dbmamaz
10-31-2010, 11:30 PM
I chose art, because honestly, most art, crafts, art appreciation, anything, makes me totally nuts. I tried using the book 'teaching art to children'or 'doing art with children' or something, and found myself yelling at the boys for not doing it right. Ok. Time to quit art. The older one comes up w crafts on his own, and the younger one sometimes still grabs the paper and markers I bought for our 'art class'. I dont worry about language too much - i bought some french software which includes speech recognition, and my husband is french-canadian (tho he hates teaching). Math is basically our easiest - i love math and hubby has several degrees in it. the younger one (dh's son, of course) LOVES math, asks about math all the time at the dinner table. The older one is frustrating to teach, but its ok. Gym - yeah, we take walks and do martail arts and thats enough for me. We all hate team sports anyways. I have good material for grammar, i'm a bit worried about history but I think i can do it better, and I love science maybe even more than math. Art makes me CRAZY! Thats the only thing my daughter sometimes helped with - cuz she was actually studying art at community college. go figure.

Tony L
11-02-2010, 04:57 PM
I am a brand new member but, if you decide to go forward with this idea of asking discipline specific questions of the group, I would be glad to pitch in. My background and passion is in science so I may be able to help out in that area.

49cats
11-22-2010, 06:34 PM
Writing. I hate writing. Hate the analyzing of literature (which totally seems to kill any joy in the actual literature.)

On the other hand chemistry is soooooooooo much fun. Biology is messy which is fun. Biochemistry is cool and physics just is what is so that's totally fun too.

Totally agree! I'm hoping to find someone to inspire my kids about writing. We joined a local library book club, but I'm finding myself actuall reading some of the books in advance to see if my kids can handle them.