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Mum
10-13-2011, 02:18 PM
I'm considering breaking my 9yo DS' week into 3 days of planned, structured curriculum and two days of "unschooling".

Anyone doing this now? Anyone tried it in the past? Suggestions? Encouragement? Reasons why this idea may be even more stupid than the time I tried driving down Lookout Mountain with bad brakes?

Mum
10-13-2011, 02:46 PM
Follow-up details - ds is an Aspie with ADHD severe enough that assigned work and lessons require my presence and often a hand on his shoulder to help him stay focused and complete the work.

With a toddler in the house this gets REALLY difficult sometimes. It would give my son the opportunity to spend more relaxed time learning about things he's most interested in which is not as challenging for him as say, learning to read maps or completing phonics work. At the same time it would give me a chance to focus my attention on the toddler a little more for part of the week.

My concern is that switching up the schedule more for a two year old and an Aspie will be counter-productive...

and yes, I am the reigning queen of run-on sentences.

sarahspins
10-13-2011, 02:55 PM
I think it could work, however it might be difficult to resist the urge to pack "too much" into those structured days? I would just be conscious of that, but I don't see why it wouldn't work

I pretty much handled my own HS'ing through high school (past the first few months when we tried distance courses), and I took a very unschooly approach to most things (history, science, language arts, etc) but the one subject I knew I needed "more" with was Math, so I would simply set goals for myself to make X amount of progress a week (I was using Saxon), and if I accomplished that in one day or seven, it didn't matter so long as I met my goal. Sometimes I'd even do more than I planned on, but I never sat down and said "on Monday and Wednesday I'm going to do math" because I never would have been able to function well in that capacity. I think not having a rigid schedule really helped me, since I could work on it as little or as much as I wanted any given day, and it took unusual circumstances (such as being very sick) for me to not meet a weekly goal.

dbmamaz
10-13-2011, 02:57 PM
yeah, i wonder if it might be easier to day half day/half day rather than every other day? Its hard for kids to wait a full day for mom's attention. Raven spends a lot of time doing free play while i'm working with his brother, as he is not doing anything independently yet . . . well, except today I told him his english was easy enough I thought he could do it without me - which he did, in about 3 minutes

hockeymom
10-13-2011, 05:49 PM
I don't see any issue with it, not knowing your kid of course. We only "do school" (table work, curriculum) 3x a week because co-op classes take up one day and field trips take up another. So they aren't exactly unschooling days, but no formal work at home gets done either.

When we started this new routine, I had an open conversation with DS (who, like your son, needs me by his side at all times during "school" time) and explained that because of our limited time, we'd need to make the best use out of those 3 days each week. He agreed and so far it hasn't been a problem, other than we've also taken some time off for various reasons and so we're trying to get back to his routine.

I guess some of the personal comfort in being able to shorten your curriculum week comes from your outlook on education. If you find equal value in what your son will study or immerse himself in the two "unschooling" days as you do in following a formal curriculum, then making the transition might not be so traumatic. Hopefully you can talk with him and get his input; maybe even having some ideas of what he might like to do on the extra days might make it easier for him (my son doesn't do well without routine and expectations and I'm making the assumption that yours doesn't either).

It sounds wonderful--keep us posted! :)

coloradoalice
10-13-2011, 08:41 PM
Try it! If it works awesome and if not then try something else. I don't see why it wouldn't work though, especially if you school year round, that's plenty of time to get stuff done and still take a week or two off here or there.

lakshmi
10-13-2011, 08:57 PM
I'm considering breaking my 9yo DS' week into 3 days of planned, structured curriculum and two days of "unschooling".

Anyone doing this now? Anyone tried it in the past? Suggestions? Encouragement? Reasons why this idea may be even more stupid than the time I tried driving down Lookout Mountain with bad brakes?

Nothing like driving down the mountain with bad brakes, BUT, don't call it unschooling.

Other than that, that is what I do, but it is what I've always done. If I were in a situation like yours, I would break into it slowly. Not go all freaky. Agree with Dbmamaz I think she said you could do half a day. I'd work back from what I have. Sort of like switching from leaded coffee to unleaded. No one here wants to end up with a headache.

Stella M
10-13-2011, 09:24 PM
I don't think it works as a 3 day/2day proposition, the reason being that those 3 days, child gets into the schooled mode, and following 2 days aren't enough to get out of that and into unschooling mode.

It works if you 'just' want to do 3 days on, 2 days lite though.

Or, as others have said, integrate that child-led time into your regular days. Mornings parent-directed, afternoons, child-directed.

Depends how you are using 'unschooling' as a term, really. To really mean unschooling or to mean school-lite or interest driven or just a short school week.

dbmamaz
10-13-2011, 11:03 PM
(um, see, here we are again, w some ppl telling someone else she cant use the word 'unschooling' that way . .lol . . . ) of course, i do get the idea - strict unschoolers seem to think that kids need an even longer period of deschooling to come to the place of really taking full responsibility for their own education . . . tho again, the ORIGINAL use of the word unschooling simply meant learning without a school . . .

Stella M
10-14-2011, 12:58 AM
Not going there!

Mum, feel free to use the word however you want!
asking, not telling.

But yes, imo, it's tricky moving from 'schooled' to 'unschooled' like that in a week and then back to 'schooled' come Monday.

lakshmi
10-14-2011, 01:04 AM
I do mind what people call things. It just isnt' right to use the term unschooling, because if she were to go to any unschooling forum that was lead by any of the Dadas they would ridicule her for even thinking about calling that unschooling. So it is sort of a CYA thing. Be aware of what the terminology means to others. Who gives a shite if she calls it Meditative suggestive study or unschooling, just to be aware that one of those terms has a lot of baggage associated with it. And to prevent looking like an ass, she might want to avoid that term.

As far as what I am understanding OP question, yes it would rock her child's world and hers to get away from intensive one on one sessions, especially if she was doind meditative suggestive study time.

Mum
10-14-2011, 09:27 AM
I really need to read more about unschooling. I don't think I get what it means. Let's go with "mom-led" and "child-led" learning.

Thanks for all the feedback. I agree that changing the schedule overnight would be too overwhelming for both kids. The more I think about it, the more I think my son who thrives on schedules and routine would not do well with a routine that was switched up like this.

So now I'm back to square one. If I could afford nursery school for a few hours for my 2yo I would use it. I have a lot of resources for entertaining and occupying my toddler during HS hours but sometimes he just wants me. Holding him and keeping him near my 9yo's school work has become too distracting for his big brother.

The half day suggestion is good. I'm sort of trying that already. The Problem is my kid takes a loooong time to get through his school work. I don't think he has too much. He just isn't able to stay focused for very long. Argh.

dbmamaz
10-14-2011, 09:48 AM
do you think it could work to have work sprinkled throughout the day? (um, thats spelled wrong i know, but i'm clueless) . . . but let him know that at 10 he has math and at 11 he does english and at 1 he'll do science ... whatever ... i havent ever homeschooled w a younger one, and having a younger and an aspie-ish at the same time does sound like a challenge!

gidamom
10-14-2011, 02:03 PM
Ok, I don't intend to push any buttons, and I hope I don't insult or offend anyone with my question, but I AM VERY interested in getting more information about what "unschooling" is as well as "meditative suggestive study". I will definitely look for more info online, but I consider all of you experts and truly value your opinions!!

The reason I'm asking is because I would LOVE to find a way to add more child-led or directed learning for the kids. HS is going well so far, but I do wish I could spark their interest or love of learning more, rather than just doing "school at home"...kwim??? any ideas?? Am I asking in the right spot?

lakshmi
10-14-2011, 02:28 PM
I really need to read more about unschooling. I don't think I get what it means. Let's go with "mom-led" and "child-led" learning.

Thanks for all the feedback. I agree that changing the schedule overnight would be too overwhelming for both kids. The more I think about it, the more I think my son who thrives on schedules and routine would not do well with a routine that was switched up like this.

So now I'm back to square one. If I could afford nursery school for a few hours for my 2yo I would use it. I have a lot of resources for entertaining and occupying my toddler during HS hours but sometimes he just wants me. Holding him and keeping him near my 9yo's school work has become too distracting for his big brother.

The half day suggestion is good. I'm sort of trying that already. The Problem is my kid takes a loooong time to get through his school work. I don't think he has too much. He just isn't able to stay focused for very long. Argh.

First, what you were suggesting is an awesome idea. You could try it, just not fast.
Second, just don't call it unschooling. Any unschoolers with an attitude will call you to the mat faster than well, I dunno, Andre the Giant. So CYA. You would then get nothing out of any discussions with them.
Lastly, look ways to include baby with older, and look at ways to move towards taking those days off. You're not at square one, you're at least a step further than that.



Ok, I don't intend to push any buttons, and I hope I don't insult or offend anyone with my question, but I AM VERY interested in getting more information about what "unschooling" is as well as "meditative suggestive study". I will definitely look for more info online, but I consider all of you experts and truly value your opinions!!

The reason I'm asking is because I would LOVE to find a way to add more child-led or directed learning for the kids. HS is going well so far, but I do wish I could spark their interest or love of learning more, rather than just doing "school at home"...kwim??? any ideas?? Am I asking in the right spot?

I made up the word Meditative Suggestive Study to show that it doesn't matter what you call it, it is still the child NOT working directly with the parent.

FINALLY, DO NOT CALL IT CHILD-LED LEARNING. Check out this link by Pam. She is one of Sandruh DaDa's big heads. http://learninghappens.wordpress.com/2011/09/24/unschooling-is-not-child-led-learning/

Okay, so that wasn't the final. Take everything anyone tells you with a grain of salt. YOU, have to figure out what is best for YOU and your children. No one else can say what is BEST. Take the information you read and think about what it means, what your goals are and how to best implement them. Separate the terms from the actions. Do what you need to do, but be aware that the words chosen to discuss these topics (unschooling, labeling) are hotbeds for dissent and ridiculous behavior and snarkyness from some.

(At this point me included, but I am not trying to be snarky, I am just trying to keep you from calling working only three days a week instead of five unschooling. For your own emotional safety if you ventured into some unschoolers' playground. And I am actually also trying to be supportive of your decision to do that. It benefits me to use that sort of schedule and it sounds like it might benefit you (OP) as well.)

gidamom
10-14-2011, 02:49 PM
Hee hee about the Meditative suggestive Study..and I DO get the post about NOT calling unschooling child-led learning. Point well taken and understood. However, I just want to point out that when I wrote child-led learning I was in NO way referring to unschooling. I was talking about exactly what Pam writes in her last sentence of the link.In MY case I was talking about having a time when I can give the kids the option of exactly what they want to do...sprinkled in with their other schooling. :)

Stella M
10-14-2011, 05:40 PM
I'll come back to your question when I have a moment gidamom - my girls are both quite self-directed, so is ds come to think of it! - but rushing to get stuff done right now - would come out garbled. I'll think and come back later :) But just to say I think it can be something that develops over time.

Stella M
10-14-2011, 07:12 PM
I really need to read more about unschooling. I don't think I get what it means. Let's go with "mom-led" and "child-led" learning.

Thanks for all the feedback. I agree that changing the schedule overnight would be too overwhelming for both kids. The more I think about it, the more I think my son who thrives on schedules and routine would not do well with a routine that was switched up like this.

So now I'm back to square one. If I could afford nursery school for a few hours for my 2yo I would use it. I have a lot of resources for entertaining and occupying my toddler during HS hours but sometimes he just wants me. Holding him and keeping him near my 9yo's school work has become too distracting for his big brother.

The half day suggestion is good. I'm sort of trying that already. The Problem is my kid takes a loooong time to get through his school work. I don't think he has too much. He just isn't able to stay focused for very long. Argh.

Something that really surprised me about unschooling ( and I'm getting surprised all over again this week, though you'd think I would know better ) is how much work is involved in unschooling.

For me, it's actually harder than schooling. Because it isn't about letting the child go off and amuse himself, it's about staying aware of them all day and available to facilitate their learning process. So as a way of easing the pressure of a little one/older child dynamic, it could be more work than you've bargained for.

Would a four day week maybe work ? Time for older to get through his work, but then with a day at the end of the week where you know the teaching pressure is off and there's time to attend to the little one ?

H'schooling with babies/toddlers is hard. I remember. Good luck finding a good solution!

http://www.holtgws.com/whatisunschoolin.html

Stella M
10-14-2011, 07:22 PM
Child directed - I guess an easy way to think about it is what would your child rather be doing than school work ? :) Give them the time and opportunity to do it; that's child directed. It can be academic though.

Like dd12 came to me and said she was worried about her spelling for next year. so i found her a free online spelling list thing and she's been doing that.

Or dd14 drawing.

Or ds designing 180 mini games!

What things would your dc do if you didn't have 'work' ready for them ?

Sometimes I will start them off with an idea - write a newspaper - then they go off and decide what and how.

Sorry, I don't feel like I'm being very clear.

gidamom
10-15-2011, 08:49 AM
No, I get it! It makes total sense...I guess that's what I'd like to add. Finding a way to take those interests and turning them into learning opportunities....

lakshmi
10-15-2011, 03:53 PM
Gidamom, you are also lucky in that your children have moved beyond 5 & 6 age range, you can have much more coherent conversations!!

SueEllen Grieves-Curl
10-15-2011, 06:43 PM
Not a good idea.
There is too much of a chance you will have issues after being out of school 4 days and than wanting him to do school 3 days in a row. It will confuse him and your toddler even more. Toddlers do better with structure and a schedule. And DS will resist getting back to work.

I do not know how much paperwork you are giving him. So I ask can he get it done during your toddler's nap time? That way he will have your full attention and you are not stressed with both DS and a toddler running the house. If not maybe change things around so he can get all the paperwork done in this time. And give him computer time in the morning.

Sticking with a daily schedule really does make life easier.



Sticking with a daily schedule will make it easier to get everything done.

SueEllen Grieves-Curl
10-15-2011, 07:32 PM
ok I went back and read page 2. Somehow I skipped it the first time. Oops.

unschooling is no formal schooling. The child is left to learn in a natural way and usually left to decide what they learn and when.

And if DS is taking way too long to do his work than it is too much for him to do at one time. If this is normal for him that is and not a new thing because he is pushing buttons.

Accidental Homeschooler
10-15-2011, 08:14 PM
We do four days a week. I tried taking Fridays off and it just made Mondays really difficult. But, taking Wednesdays off of formal schooling has been fine. When we started I insisted on getting everything done in the mornings and that was OK for a while and how my older dd still prefers to structure her day. With my 6yo we now do lots of breaks and it is still rare that we are not done by two in the afternoon. By trying to get everything done in the morning I was starting to feel like I was dragging her through it. We do a subject and then she is free to play and I can work with my older dd or get my stuff done. Building more breaks into your day might give you more flexibility and for my dd, who is not ADD but is challenging in her own way, knowing that when she finishes a subject she will get to do what she wants is pretty motivating. Anyway, good luck with whatever you decide to try.

Pefa
10-16-2011, 07:43 AM
Whatever makes sense for you and your family will work out. Which is almost as frustrating as being told "No. You MUST do it this way because the bable (to borrow mommykicksbutt's delicious title mangling) says so."

Maybe, because of the AS and ADHD, look at how to help ds with some of the bigger issues - staying on task, transitioning etc, rather than content. This way you're being explicit about how to learn which is a very useful skill.

I still have nightmares about the year I hs'd my older two while dealing with a toddler a newborn and a mother recovering from a stroke. It wasn't pretty. I'm amazed my older two still talk to me.

Mum
10-16-2011, 10:56 AM
Maybe, because of the AS and ADHD, look at how to help ds with some of the bigger issues - staying on task, transitioning etc, rather than content. This way you're being explicit about how to learn which is a very useful skill.

I very much appreciate that last bit of advice. I'm looking into some more resources to help me-help him with the bigger issues. I agree that in many ways this is more important for me to help him learn than which states were part of the first 13 colonies, etc.

CatInTheSun
10-16-2011, 04:58 PM
I am not dealing with ADD, so maybe this wouldn't work for you, but we school 7 days a week for some of the reasons. Each day they do their 3Rs, which may take less than an hour. A couple days a week, that's ALL they do. Some days we do "formal" science/history/latin/art/piano (not all on the same day!) and other days we spend time investigating something interesting to them. I have an 8yo, 6yo, and almost-3yo. I found this schedule gives the kids a daily structure, no Monday-morning-angst, and time to focus on my toddler, since the work is spread out more, each day is shorter.

The other thing that has helped me is the Wii. My 8yo has always been pretty good, but since we got the Wii (and all tv/wii/computer time is dependent on completing their core schoolwork) she's often done with her writing and reading and begging for her math assignment by 7am so she can get on the wii sooner. Once I got over my "she should do her learning because of an inner desire to learn, not to play Wii," I learned to appreciate how much easier it's made hs-ing. Maybe think about what things most motivate dc and use 'em! :D

My kids get up at 6am (not my choice, lol), and I've found the earlier we get to our lessons, the quicker they are. There is a HUGE difference between a 7am start (may be done in 2 hours) and a 9am start (will take all day, ugh). Most days they are done with their 3Rs before breakfast (they have a glass of milk and fruit or yogurt when they wake up, and a traditional "breakfast" at 9:30a). Then we play outside or inside as a family, and do "electives" after that. The more I try to work with my kids' natural daily rhythm, the easier it is. When I try to go on MY preferred schedule..it's like herding cats.

Mum
10-17-2011, 09:11 AM
Wow, CatintheSun! I want to make sure I understand you correctly - you do a little homeschool every day ... and you DON'T jab tacks into your forehead to cope? hmmm.... Interesting. I like that you can do this. I would probably run away with the mailman if I needed to HS everyday.

It makes sense though. I wonder if I have it in me to do that. The structure and predictable routine would definitely help them. I'm going to consider trying this. If it ruins my marriage and we end up on the evening news I'm holding you responsible. ;)

CatInTheSun
10-17-2011, 10:01 AM
Wow, CatintheSun! I want to make sure I understand you correctly - you do a little homeschool every day ... and you DON'T jab tacks into your forehead to cope?

Yep, and the scars from the tack-jabbing from dealing with Monday morning behavior are healing nicely! LOL Mind you, some days my total involvement might be "Have you done your reading? Math sheet? Awesome!" and maybe put out a craft, read a chapter of a book, turn on some music for dancing, or take them for a walk. :D Less time that "days off" when I hear myself asking, "What is that on the walls? DO you think the cat LIKES wearing that? I just folded those!" LOL Days just seem to go better here when they start with predictable routine of a bit of school work (and I get to sip my morning coffee).

Tayonoss
10-17-2011, 10:11 AM
Wow I feel so underwelmed..lol I am lucky if my kids get homeschooled 5 times a week sometimes less( Shsss dont tell the in laws.) I couldnt imagine doing it 7 days but it is a thought. I wonder if the weekend cleaning could count as "Lifeskills" maybe you are on to something Cat :P

Lou
10-17-2011, 11:07 AM
I'm considering breaking my 9yo DS' week into 3 days of planned, structured curriculum and two days of "unschooling".

Anyone doing this now? Anyone tried it in the past? Suggestions? Encouragement? Reasons why this idea may be even more stupid than the time I tried driving down Lookout Mountain with bad brakes?

I have not done day on day off before, because my son seems to do better with a similar routine each day. So we do some structured curriculum for half of our school day and unschool the other half. It works great for us! My son seems to thrive with the routine, but he can't handle a whole lot of the structured parent directed curriculum.

They also do well with the workbox system (filled with more 'strewing type' activities) on days things aren't going as planned. (I keep the workboxes loaded with that type of stuff so if I need to pull it out and use it I can)

Side thought: do you use the workbox system? You could use it for both and then one day have the structured and the next have fun/silly activities, but each day gives your aspie a similar routine as well as your preschooler...the preschooler's work box could just be loaded with preschooly things (puzzles, threading/lacing, matching games, etc)

I'm sure I had run on sentences too. :)

PS I did not read all 4 pages before getting to this...so if I duplicated someone else's info,...sorry :)

jessica14
10-23-2011, 05:18 PM
One thing that we have hit upon that seems to be working is to do three days with both kids and then each child gets a day to themselves with me. Or we do four days together and split the other day. My son is most likely ADHD so he needs a lot of direction and can't/won't do anything independently. What I do for the days that I am working with DD is set him up with educational online games, his legos, or documentary DVDs. He's very visual and he's still getting to learn, but it feels more freeing to him. He also has to do just a bit of formal work on that day-reading to me and a read aloud by me usually. I don't think he could do the every other day thing. He needs structure. Last week when we had to change a lot of plans because of an unexpected doctor's appointment for pink eye, it kind of threw everything off.

Overall, do what works best for your DS and family.

Accidental Homeschooler
10-23-2011, 06:34 PM
One thing that we have hit upon that seems to be working is to do three days with both kids and then each child gets a day to themselves with me. Or we do four days together and split the other day. My son is most likely ADHD so he needs a lot of direction and can't/won't do anything independently. What I do for the days that I am working with DD is set him up with educational online games, his legos, or documentary DVDs. He's very visual and he's still getting to learn, but it feels more freeing to him. He also has to do just a bit of formal work on that day-reading to me and a read aloud by me usually. I don't think he could do the every other day thing. He needs structure. Last week when we had to change a lot of plans because of an unexpected doctor's appointment for pink eye, it kind of threw everything off.

Overall, do what works best for your DS and family.

This is kind of what we are doing. My 6yo doesn't do academics on Wednesdays and my 13yo takes off Fridays. They get to do their own stuff on those days. I think having two days out of the week where I can focus on one is really helpful. They do a lot of art projects, playing, reading, cooking (for my older dd) on their off days.

Gabriela
10-24-2011, 09:54 AM
Four days weeks were too stressful for us, it just wasn't enough time.
When I hear people say that they do everything in two or three hours a day, it gives me the shivers. When I imagine myself trying to do it all in 2-3hrs, it looks hectic, rushed, and jerky.
We just couldn't do it. I even like the sound of the 7-day week, just to spread it all out more.

I tried the part time "unschooling", or whatever it's called, this month. IT WAS SO HARD. We could not do it all the time, it would be too emotionally draining for us. But I'm sure it depends on your child. Mine just has a really hard (painful) time coming up with ideas on his own - which, yes, is actually a strong argument for doing more of it. For this reason, though, I am going to add an hour or two every week to Independent Project Time, so that he can develop his independence, self-motivation, inventiveness etc...

Mum
10-24-2011, 10:06 AM
Side thought: do you use the workbox system? You could use it for both and then one day have the structured and the next have fun/silly activities, but each day gives your aspie a similar routine as well as your preschooler...the preschooler's work box could just be loaded with preschooly things (puzzles, threading/lacing, matching games, etc)


I hadn't thought about this. Thanks for the suggestion. I appreciate the idea of one day off for the other kids so one kid can work with mom too. That might come in handy in a few years if we decide to hs the toddler.

I would love to give my kid independent project time or a chance to branch out into something HE wants to learn about apart from the curriculum. Maybe I could make that a Friday thing instead of a set curriculum.

Thank you so much for all the feedback. You all have given me a lot of ideas. I love this forum.

Lou
10-24-2011, 10:09 AM
I hadn't thought about this. Thanks for the suggestion. I appreciate the idea of one day off for the other kids so one kid can work with mom too. That might come in handy in a few years if we decide to hs the toddler.

I would love to give my kid independent project time or a chance to branch out into something HE wants to learn about apart from the curriculum. Maybe I could make that a Friday thing instead of a set curriculum.

Thank you so much for all the feedback. You all have given me a lot of ideas. I love this forum.

FYI ~ when I load the workbox system, I typically make sure I put mom's help stuff while the other child is most likely working on independent stuff...which allows for mom time as well.

I don't use the workbox system every day...I keep mine loaded and rely on it when we have unplanned days or something comes up and it seems like school might not otherwise happen. ;-)

Gabriela
10-24-2011, 10:29 AM
I think I might combine workbox with Independent Project time. That way, if he doesn't come up with anything on his own, he can go to the box for ideas - instead of coming to me.
Hadn't thought of that. Gotta love the threads. Thanks!

Accidental Homeschooler
10-24-2011, 10:31 AM
Four days weeks were too stressful for us, it just wasn't enough time.
When I hear people say that they do everything in two or three hours a day, it gives me the shivers. When I imagine myself trying to do it all in 2-3hrs, it looks hectic, rushed, and jerky.etc...

We do it through most of the summer also, so I guess that is how we spread it out. That is one of the things I love about hsing, you can structure it so many different ways, whatever is going to work for your family. I have noticed that since we started hsing my 6yo has become much better about finding things to do and entertaining herself.

Lou
10-24-2011, 10:47 AM
I think I might combine workbox with Independent Project time. That way, if he doesn't come up with anything on his own, he can go to the box for ideas - instead of coming to me.
Hadn't thought of that. Gotta love the threads. Thanks!

Yeah, I pretty much use it for when my mind is checked out...ha, ha...or wants to be checked out...I find it so much easier to load it up with activites and then just have it there to rely on when I'm not fully ready to be super mom. I have also gone to it for my own 'strewing' ideas...I'll pull something out of it when I just can't find something clever to strew about the house for them to find. :)

Another thing I did was make little cards with various activities on them...(build lincoln log creation, legos, etc...)...and then stuffed them in an old kleenex box and the kids can draw something out of that box for an activity when they are bored or can't think of something to do. I put in there some silly things too like walk around the house backwards and count how many steps it takes, then try to do it in less steps...etc...

Mum
10-24-2011, 04:43 PM
Yeah, I pretty much use it for when my mind is checked out...ha, ha...or wants to be checked out...I find it so much easier to load it up with activites and then just have it there to rely on when I'm not fully ready to be super mom. I have also gone to it for my own 'strewing' ideas...I'll pull something out of it when I just can't find something clever to strew about the house for them to find. :)

Another thing I did was make little cards with various activities on them...(build lincoln log creation, legos, etc...)...and then stuffed them in an old kleenex box and the kids can draw something out of that box for an activity when they are bored or can't think of something to do. I put in there some silly things too like walk around the house backwards and count how many steps it takes, then try to do it in less steps...etc...

Love these! Do you have a blog? You should write a book.

Lou
10-24-2011, 10:21 PM
Love these! Do you have a blog? You should write a book.

I do have a blog, but I suck at consistant postings, so not many followers..and no good ideas posted on it yet...I started it to feel out what blogging was about and it didn't yet grab me, so I post on those rare nights when I have NOTHING else distracting me...I hope to write on it more in the near future...

If you were asking because you were interested in the activity cards (not sure of your kid's ages) I have them in a word document and can send them to you for you to use if you want...???

Mum
10-24-2011, 11:55 PM
I do have a blog, but I suck at consistant postings, so not many followers..and no good ideas posted on it yet...I started it to feel out what blogging was about and it didn't yet grab me, so I post on those rare nights when I have NOTHING else distracting me...I hope to write on it more in the near future...

If you were asking because you were interested in the activity cards (not sure of your kid's ages) I have them in a word document and can send them to you for you to use if you want...???

That would be great! I'll pm my email to you. Thanks!

jessica14
10-26-2011, 07:43 AM
Four days weeks were too stressful for us, it just wasn't enough time.
When I hear people say that they do everything in two or three hours a day, it gives me the shivers. When I imagine myself trying to do it all in 2-3hrs, it looks hectic, rushed, and jerky.
We just couldn't do it. I even like the sound of the 7-day week, just to spread it all out more.

I tried the part time "unschooling", or whatever it's called, this month. IT WAS SO HARD. We could not do it all the time, it would be too emotionally draining for us. But I'm sure it depends on your child. Mine just has a really hard (painful) time coming up with ideas on his own - which, yes, is actually a strong argument for doing more of it. For this reason, though, I am going to add an hour or two every week to Independent Project Time, so that he can develop his independence, self-motivation, inventiveness etc...

My son, doesn't work well for more than a short time without becomeing way unfocused, so we have been doing just 2-3 hours. We start early and try to get that in and then add more later. I started him on Starfall.com the other day for reading and he loved it, but after about 30 min, he just went down hill with the quality of his reading. It's very tough with him and I get stressed with him too. He is not really completing as much as he should IMO. Not that I would send him back, but he would be getting much more time at school although, he probably wouldn't actually be participating all that much.

Lou
10-26-2011, 08:29 AM
My son, doesn't work well for more than a short time without becomeing way unfocused, so we have been doing just 2-3 hours. We start early and try to get that in and then add more later. I started him on Starfall.com the other day for reading and he loved it, but after about 30 min, he just went down hill with the quality of his reading. It's very tough with him and I get stressed with him too. He is not really completing as much as he should IMO. Not that I would send him back, but he would be getting much more time at school although, he probably wouldn't actually be participating all that much.

Please don't read into this as offensive...I am curious, because I also have a 6 year old boy, who I put onto starfall at times. I'm not sure if I know what your son was doing for 30 minutes on starfall? Reading? Playing games? Listening to sounds? Anyhow, my son is 6 and 30 minutes of actual reading would be FAR MORE then he could do. Having my son actually READ for 30 minutes would stress him out beyond a level I could handle because I would react unfortunately in a negative way and get stressed out myself. However, playing around on his own doing his own thing on starfall is he something he could do for 30 minutes...not sure much more, but he likes surfing around on starfall and listening...

He also really likes the math on TIME4LEARNING...so if your son prefers the computer learning, he might like that program too? In the classroom setting my son was for sure not participating, he was instead learning really clever ways to NOT participate in class, at home and in life...now that he's homeschooling he is coming back to the participating side of life. I do beleive my son learns so much better when he is given the materials in a way he enjoys and material he enjoys...I try to limit the 'dreadful' stuff he can't stand to a SUPER bare min at this time in his life. 6 is still pretty young...some camps don't even believe in any formal schooling for boys until age 10.

I just started listening to the BOYS ALIVE online event and so far it's all been about reading/writing and how to help boys read better, longer and enjoy it more, etc...you might also find it interesting. The host I believe is a school teacher or director? She refers to her school often, but since I've come into it in the middle and haven't researched to find out everyone's back grounds, I'm not sure...the people she interviews so far seem to come from a wide background and belief on various issues re: boys...so you may love the information one day and not be all that thrilled the next... http://www.boysaliveevent.com/?utm_source=October+Event&utm_campaign=4752ce950d-July_EVENT6_22_2011&utm_medium=email

Mum
10-26-2011, 12:49 PM
OK BIG CHANGE: After my husband was home sick for a day and heard and saw what I actually go through he insisted that we change things immediately or put ds back in school (even though dh prefers hs too) for everyone's well being. He is not at all the male-dominant family leader type, so don't take it that way. (I'd kick his ass to the curb if he werel)

So here's what we did:
1. We canned everything but Math, Phonics/Reading and Composition. This is done in the morning.
2. In the afternoon he is free to do whatever learning he chooses, via whatever activity he chooses, so long as mom approves it.

We sat down with DS and laid it all out with him. He was pleased.

So far, he has been willingly working with me in the morning. He's still distracted, etc. but not cussing and throwing things at me. This has calmed his lil' brother down. He now plays quietly near us the way he used to before all hell started breaking lose from his overwhelmed brother.

The stuff my kid is doing with his free time is nice - making comic books, researching Godzilla memorabilia, classifying fall leaves...

I think we might just get through this without ending up on the evening news. Thank you all for your support and suggestions. I don't think I would have made it this far without being connected to this Forum.

Lou
10-26-2011, 01:27 PM
Sounds similar to our day...it works for us :)

lakshmi
10-26-2011, 02:45 PM
@mum Sounds like you've worked it out. Also good to have that extra adult "validate the feeling" And seems like your kid feels honored too!

Way to go.

Jackielyn
10-26-2011, 06:58 PM
Sounds alot like our day for my 6 yr old :)