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Teaching as a group vs. individual


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I can't seem to come up with a good title. But I'm pondering over teaching history, etc as a family subject vs individually. The past couple years it has just worked best to do these with both my oldest kids together, but as I ponder adding kid 3 to the mix next year (and kid 4 in the not to distant future) I'm finding it much harder to combine. And to be honest, the crowd control aspect is also an issue. The noise and chaos that is just inherent with four kids (three of them boys) just stresses me out when I'm trying to read out loud. I'm starting to think its time to move to move to more individual work. I can still listen to narrations and discuss, but more one on one. This last point is a recent revelation to me. I'm noticing how cranky I get when reading aloud. I feel like no ones listening. Even though they usually are. The noise and motion is too much. When one or two kids do it, I'm ok, but now that it's 3 or 4 kids, I'm totally stressing. I've yelled at the kids more times than I want to admit, to sit down, shut up, and listen so we can be done already!


But trying to figure out how and when to make this jump is hard. Do I keep everyone in the same time period but with their own appropriate level books? This seems like lots of work. I'm eyeing a curriculum written by a homeschooling mom that's based around those what your Nth grader needs to know books. The spine work is light, but all scheduled out for me. This allows room for reading related good books (lists included) for fun. Everybody would be reading about something different for history and science. I'm not sure if this would make me crazy, trying to keep up, or if it would simplify things because everyone can read their own work, it's age level and (for us) load level appropriate. No more hours spent planning. I've always enjoyed he planning part, but not anymore. I feel like it's taking up too much of my time and brain. A doable plan to just follow, leaving me time and energy to focus on teaching the child in front of me, sounds really nice.

Edited by vaquitita
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This coming year we will not be doing history together anymore either. *sniff sniff*


It has typically been our (my) favorite time of day, with reading our spine aloud and discussing and then moving on to their individual supplemental assignments, but with 2 high schoolers now it's just not working for us anymore. Next year my 2 younger DDs will be on the same time period, but doing their own stuff. For the 2 high school DSs, I decided if we're not going to be doing history together anymore anyway, then it didn't really matter if we're not on the same time period anymore, so I revamped my high school history plan completely and they'll be doing Government and Economics together instead of staying on the same time period as the younger girls.


Like you, having all 4 of them together was becoming disruptive. Probably because they boys were bored and ready to move on to something meatier. They were cracking jokes and tossing a ball back and forth instead of having the beautiful wonderful discussions of my imagination. ;) I can sooooo relate to feeling like no one is listening!

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