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Homeschooling with a large family --Help!

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I've been homeschooling for four years and have come to the conclusion that there has got to be a more peaceful way to go about it. I have a 5th, 3rd, K, and a 3 yo and 1 yo. We do TOG with a wonderful co-op. Next year my older three will be at three different levels of TOG and I'm borderline panicky about it. Are there any tips on keeping little ones happily occupied/feeling loved while trying to accomplish so much school with the big guys?


Also, has anyone experimented with having older kids help teach younger ones. I was always so against 'using' older children to help school younger ones until #5 was born and time is so tight. They love spending time with their younger siblings and I'm starting to see how it could be mutually beneficial. Any thoughts?


Oh, and I've been somewhat heavy on one-on-one intensive curriculum. I'm realizing that I need to change that if I want to keep my sanity next year. Problem is, I LOVE the one-on-one time. Oh-well. Any suggestions for replacement for FLL grammar? We've used it all along and I'm at a loss for what could be as good and also independent. Latin as well is a time taker. Any suggestions on independent or at least somewhat independent latin?


Sorry for such a long post.

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You can do it! This year I have a 6th grader, 4th grader, 2nd grader, Pre-Ker, a 2yo, and a 5 month old. We do TOG, Latin, FLL, WWE and whatever other one-on-one stuff we have lol.


Schedule, schedule, schedule and work boxes. I start with table time where we do Bible, memory work, hymn singing, map tracing, etc. After that the olders do independent work while I spend an hour or so doing Pre-K with my 4yo and my 2yo sits next to me with books. My 4yo moves to doing his work boxes which take about an hour or more while my 2yo goes into a play pen with toys in one corner and books in another. He does that for about an hour. During that time I do one-on-one time with my second grader. At the end my 4th grader joins and we do Latin together - my 2nd grader and 4th grader do it together. My 2nd grader then moves back to independent work in his work boxes while I do time with my 4th grader. After that, she makes lunch. While she makes lunch I correct and work on corrections with my 6th grader. Then after lunch my 6th grader does Science while I do read aloud with everyone else. Then the little ones nap. During nap we start right into TOG. After that I do First Form Latin and go over any math issues or whatnot with my 6th grader. Then everyone finishes up their school towards the end of nap time and if they need me for anything they can do that at that time.


You can do it! You just need a solid rotation. Oh and my 2nd grader has a stack of worksheets in his bottom work box. If he needs me but I am helping someone else he is to pull them out and do them until I can get to him. They are just money worksheets, math fun pages, things like that.


I am the most disorganized person ever. If I can do it, you can!!!

Edited by frankcassiesmom
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Welcome! My kids are the same ages as yours :w00t: and we are using TOG as well, but not through a co-op. I don't have much in the way of advice since most days find me rather :willy_nilly: It's busy!!


You asked for independent Latin. I've been using First Form + DVDs by Memoria Press for my 5th grader. She's able to work through most of it on her own and enjoys the program.


I don't have older kids help teach the younger ones exactly but I do have them involved with reading. One, I have younger kids read to older kids. This teaches my older ones patience and tolerance :tongue_smilie: and they're usually glad to sit and listen. I also have my older kids read to my youngers. This gets the younger ones enjoying a read aloud and it gets my older ones practicing reading aloud and fluency. Sometimes my 5th grader does the phonics program with my K'er when things get really hectic but only once in a while and only to check/help, not teach any new concepts.

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We use TOG - I have 1R, 1D, 1UG, and 1LG. My R student does not do much with the youngers, because he is swamped (not just TOG, but other pursuits), but I've become more and more likely to have my D or UG students read to LG, or help them with maps or things like that.


As for my little one, I have a few bins of toys and old math workbooks/activity books for her and she sits at the table and does her "schoolwork" while the others do math/English/handwriting/piano/etc. I'll admit, though, that the first 2 hours of our school day sometimes feel like complete chaos to me, even though they aren't. Just lots of kids with lots of questions. When they are finished with their subjects they can go play.


In the afternoon, my 2 youngest are taking naps and that's when we do history, literature, and writing.


**Latin Recommendation** We used to use Latin Primer and this year switched to Visual Latin http://www.visuallatin.com/ It's fabulous. Once in a while my 3rd grader needs help, but so far it's been mostly independent and she loves it!!

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I feel the same way you do sometimes. I have a 3rd grader, 2nd, kinder, 2.5 year old and 16 month old. Sometimes I feel like my 2.5 year old is getting the shaft, but she does get played with when a particular sib is done with her work. I try to read to her special at least once a day. Plus, I need to remember that just because she's not getting my attention particularly, doesn't mean she's locked in a closet somewhere. She's always in the mix of family life.

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