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turtlemama
04-02-2011, 10:24 PM
To those of you with young kids/babies, how do you manage to have time to do fun homeschooling stuff without them getting into everything, etc?

My youngest son is 20 months, and in to EVERYTHING. I can sit with my older son and read to him, or have him read to me, or similar. But, for us to play games together, or do fun science or math projects, we simply can't unless my baby is napping (which is only about an hour a day). Is there some other way to get around this that I don't know about? I've tried distracting him with something 'for him', but he'll have non of that...he wants to be a part of whatever we are doing.

Do I just have to wait until he's older and make the most of his nap time?

kcanders
04-02-2011, 11:25 PM
I don't have much to offer as far as suggestions go. My youngest just turned 1 and until recently he wouldn't nap much at all, which made getting anything done impossible. Finally he is taking a couple naps a day and it is going a little better. He also goes to bed earlier than my older two so I can do some schoolwork after I put him to bed sometimes. The hardest part for me is to get the other kids to make the most of the time he is napping. I put him down to nap and then they mess around and stall and suddenly need a drink or are starving and by the time I get them to actually sit down half the time is up.

I also try to find work that my older two can do somewhat independently. Good luck. I'm sure it will get better soon (or at least that's what I hear) :)

Cheryl
04-03-2011, 08:43 AM
lol. story of my life!

I have my oldest 3 do everything they can do w/o me first. Math~TT, Spelling, History reading while the youngest 3 are either watching TV (educational of course :-) or playing outside. When the 2 youngest nap after lunch that is when "school" really starts. English and any questions for the oldest 3 and my 5 y/o has about 1/2 hour of school time with math and reading.

other than that my only advice as I am waiting for it too is, things will be better next year..............unless I'm pregnant again, lol

Jeni
04-03-2011, 11:50 AM
I just didn't do a lot. I would wait for dh to come home, or was off from work, or have my mom come help watch the youngest. Other then that, some kids are just difficult to work around.

Vashti
04-04-2011, 09:59 AM
Highchair, highchair, highchair. I have workboxes set aside for my little ones, as well as my preschooler. I have plastic animals, blocks, board books, etc. all ready to go for the little ones. I start with a circle time that we're all involved in, and then move to the dining room. The little ones get a new activity (if they want) every 15 minutes while I work with my oldest. I also have drinks and healthy snacks at the ready, and that helps quite a bit too. My three year old likes learning now just as much as my preschooler, so she's pretty easy, but we have to break often for me to nurse the baby and I read to the girls during that time, or we just take a break and they have free play during that time.

farrarwilliams
04-04-2011, 10:39 AM
No advice because I don't have that issue, but the blog Tinderbox had a nice post (http://tinderbox.homeschooljournal.net/2011/04/03/homeschooling-with-a-toddler/)about this issue the other day - I just skimmed it, but it was full of details.

h5rus
04-04-2011, 10:43 AM
I have two 23 month olds and it IS hard. We have a lot of mini breaks as I see to them. They are usually super good at playing right in the morning and aren't clingy then, so I take advantage of that and school my oldest during that time. What really helped us out is getting a mother's helper. She entertains the twins and allows me to have some uninterrupted time to do some activities with my oldest. It has really helped! The other thing is waiting for the twins to nap. We're usually at the mercy of the twins mood LOL I'll return and see if anyone else has some good suggestions! :)

turtlemama
04-05-2011, 03:37 AM
Thanks for all of the ideas/input. And it's nice to hear I'm not the only one struggling with this problem! Makes me think twice about having a third baby! (just kidding, sorta)

turtlemama
04-05-2011, 03:38 AM
I have two 23 month olds and it IS hard. We have a lot of mini breaks as I see to them. They are usually super good at playing right in the morning and aren't clingy then, so I take advantage of that and school my oldest during that time. What really helped us out is getting a mother's helper. She entertains the twins and allows me to have some uninterrupted time to do some activities with my oldest. It has really helped! The other thing is waiting for the twins to nap. We're usually at the mercy of the twins mood LOL I'll return and see if anyone else has some good suggestions! :)

Oh my, twins! I'm imagining my toddler x2! lol.

Yeah, I've thought about the idea of a mother's helper. That sounds wonderful. I just have never really gotten around to looking for one. Hmmm....

wife&mommy
04-06-2011, 07:06 PM
Sadly, I usually put a TV show on for my DD if she doesn't want to play by herself when we are doing work. I try to do Leapfrog or Super Why or something like that where it is as least a little educational. I tried doing things like drawing or snack with her and that would work for about 3 minutes. LOL Right now she is a little better and wants to participate a little (she just turned 3) but most of the year she just couldn't stand it.

kcanders
04-09-2011, 10:23 AM
If you come up with anything, let me know. :) My little just turned 1, but she's been mobile since before 6 months and walking since 9. Now she's running, climbing things, etc. We have to lay the chairs for our school table on their backs whenever we get up, because I've walked back into the room to find her standing on top of the table one too many times for my comfort. If we are sitting at the table while she's in the room, she's usually looking for a way to get up there with us. Will your little one color for a few minutes? Mine will color for maybe 4 minutes as of the last couple weeks, so that's progress. lol l
LOL this sounds like my daughter when she was younger, though she is still incredibly active now at 8. My ds is not quite walking yet, which I am fine with :) Not that it keeps him out of much trouble...he still destroys everything in his path. That is great yours is starting to color...mine only eats the crayons which makes for some colorful diaper changes. Good luck everyone with your little ones.

mamakaty
04-12-2011, 12:32 AM
I was just coming here to post a similar question! :) I have a 9 year old, that we've been homeschooling for about a month, plus a 3 year old and an 11 month old. The 3 year old goes to parents' day out, but the baby won't go until the fall. Still, that will only be two days. It's a struggle for me, to be honest, even when we aren't trying to have school!! The 3 year old thinks he's as big as the 9 year old, and the baby thinks he's just as big as the other two.

Anyway, I'm still trying to get it all figured out. I try to have a rough list of what the 9 yr old needs to do for school, and mark what can be done by himself and what he needs me for. My mom is able to help out some, and that is definitely a big help! The problem is that the computer/office is in the back of the house, and not very toddler/baby safe, so when I need to go back there to help with schoolwork on the computer or use the markerboard, but I'm the only adult in the house, it makes it much more difficult. Other times he works at the kitchen table. We've been trying to figure out how we can rearrange the house to serve our homeschool needs better.

So yeah, basically, no advice, just right there with you!

Katy

ercswf
04-16-2011, 10:07 PM
I was blessed on many levels this time around with my daughter(1). She is a very easy going baby and has her own "routine" for when we do lessons. She likes to either sit at her little dora desk or play at her playdoh table. My nephew (1.5) is a very energetic little boy that I have taught to be the hander. It is his job to hand everybody EVERYTHING. If my sons need to give me a paper they give it to him and tell him to hand it to me and he does. If he does not feel like that then he normally plays at the dora desk or playdoh table.

Kylie
04-19-2011, 08:38 AM
oh gosh story of my life lol! I've posted about this before too and it still is not getting any easier and he'll be 3 in July.

I have a 9 year old which thankfully is pretty indpendent with his core work, my 6 year old is in the very hard slog throws of learning to read so really needs me and my delightfully gorgeous 2 year old is just an absolute handful right now....most days I am pulling my hair out to be honest!! This afternoon was a hair raiser and every time that happens I sit back and seriously reconsider unschooling just until he is able to cope with the 'whole school' thing....I'm just too gutless to take the plunge!

In regards to what I do....wing it!! Every day is different. I try to have little activities prepared, that works maybe 1 in 5. I try to send him outside to play. He is very engaged when outisde and we have a smallish fully fenced yard area that is very toddler friendly and I can see and hear him through many windows in the house. Again that only works rarely and I don't want to be sending him away every time we have school work to do.

Playdough is always good value but it just isn't quite long enough. He's not into tv but once in a while I can get him to sit for maybe 30 minutes and watch something...most other times he is running wild annoying the heck out of everybody else lol!

Our fun stuff, hands history and science etc really only gets down when he naps. He had stopped napping but I had to bring them back as our afternoons were unbearable!! So he now naps 1 - 3 times per week. Or on the odd days that my MIL takes him,like yesterday and we got some history and science done. We made a start on a model Ziggurat and made a wind vane and collected rain drops ;-) hehehe I'll blog about them at some stage.

I get really down in regards to our lack of fun stuff we do at home, because that is where the real learning happens, the exciting learning, the 'fun school' as my DS calls it and at the moment it happens so rarely :( I know this won't be forever, but it is damn hard work.

Really puts the thought of ever having another into perspective that's for sure ROFL!!! The thing is, he is not naughty, he is actually very very bright kid...not a day goes by (when we are out in public) that I don't get a comment on how advanced he is and dh and I often find ourselves wondering where on earth he came from LOL!! So I think he gets bored easily but is just far too young for anything too structured....I simply cannot spend all day with him and just leave the other two too their own devices...keeping a balance is a struggle.....so I think I've rambled enough now ;-)

Kylie
04-22-2011, 03:09 AM
Corrigan, truly that is one HUGE reason why I am not having another. My DS truns 10 this year and really we haven't done much more than basics for the last 2 years.......I can't keep on allowing myself to turn a blind eye to what he is missing out on. I know he is gaining in oher areas but for me he is still missing out on stuff big time!

I truly admire those that can do it and so wish that was me because I'd love to round our family out with 4 kiddos but I have accepted that what we have is what we are meant to have (I had a miscarriage just over 12 montsh ago)

chatpatka
05-02-2011, 10:03 AM
My youngest is 6 and he's still a very distracting pain in the rear for his brother (10) and sister (8). He doesn't yet do as much organized school as them, so he's over in a jiffy and starts LOUDLY playing by himself... Sometimes I wish I had a separate house for him...

This being said, I would also like to add a few words of appreciation for small siblings - they make excellent sidekicks :) My older kids used their younger siblings to reiterate stuff they've learned. Yeah, they talked down, not in a mean and diminutive kind of way, but in a way that makes them feel grown-up and knowledgeable. And I find it beneficial for the smaller sibling as well. It's a good way for them to gain information in a live, non-textbook format. That's how my youngest wasn't sure where giraffes lived, but could instantly say where the first Protoceratops skeleton was discovered and all that before the age of 3 :)
Hopefully soon they will all stop being distracted by everything that moves and start maturely concentrating on their schoolwork... Who knows? It might just happen :)

Kylie
05-02-2011, 06:04 PM
My youngest is 6 and he's still a very distracting pain in the rear for his brother (10) and sister (8). He doesn't yet do as much organized school as them, so he's over in a jiffy and starts LOUDLY playing by himself... Sometimes I wish I had a separate house for him...

This being said, I would also like to add a few words of appreciation for small siblings - they make excellent sidekicks :) My older kids used their younger siblings to reiterate stuff they've learned. Yeah, they talked down, not in a mean and diminutive kind of way, but in a way that makes them feel grown-up and knowledgeable. And I find it beneficial for the smaller sibling as well. It's a good way for them to gain information in a live, non-textbook format. That's how my youngest wasn't sure where giraffes lived, but could instantly say where the first Protoceratops skeleton was discovered and all that before the age of 3 :)
Hopefully soon they will all stop being distracted by everything that moves and start maturely concentrating on their schoolwork... Who knows? It might just happen :)

Oh for sure there are huge pluses for the siblings. My 2 year old is far more advanced than my others were at the same age simply because he has them around all day long. It's quite an amazing process to sit back and watch really. Maybe they could do his entire schooling for me ;-) ROFL!

05-07-2011, 09:10 AM
See, this is a perfect example of life with toddlers. I just typed a whole big response to this thread but my toddler interrupted me a zillion times and the forum logged me out and so the whole reply is lost. Gaaaaa!!!!

Anyway, to the original poster, I hear ya. This has been our biggest challenge this year. Do whatever you can when they nap. When they (sob, sob) give up naps or refuse to nap, do what you can to keep 'em occupied, even if it means letting them make a mess. Do stuff on weekends, in the evenings or whenever else your husband can watch the toddler. Take any and all offers from friends and family to watch him, even if they come over and play with him for 15 minutes so you can work with your other kids. And when all else fails, put away the school stuff and head for the park.