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Æthelthryth the Texan

Has anyone else's schedule gone to hell in a hand basket?

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2 minutes ago, square_25 said:

I'm kind of hoping there's a way to strike a balance between their needs. 

What does the 3 yo really want? Like if she wants to be near you guys while you work with dd7 (hello, jealousy insecurity whatever), then can there be contractual parameters? With ds, I locked him in a high chair. Once I stopped, well honestly it got dangerous and we lost him once. That was bad. 

But if you had a corner of that room with a menu of items, you could have a contractual agreement like to be here, this the noise expectation, blah blah.

You could order a play kitchen or bring something from the play room in.

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3 minutes ago, square_25 said:

I've actually suggested moving some stuff later to her, but she loves her special evening time when DD3.75 is asleep and she gets all the attention for a change. 

I totally understand what you mean about needing a sense of control. I remember you posting about that :-). 

DH is not... good at acting on information about what I need, unless I'm very explicit about what I'm asking for. (So for example, after many years, we've settled on me managing all of the chores -- he does LOTS of them, but he will NOT think to do most of them when they need doing.) So he'll do a lot, but first I'm going to figure out what exactly I need, and I don't know it yet. And his work day is already shortened :-/. 

For example, I mentioned that I have no idea how to get Russian done with DD7, and he said maybe I could give up half an hour of my work time for that, as he watches the kids :P. He tends to play tug of war. And I'm not feeling calm enough to know what I actually need as opposed to just feel a sense of inchoate stress and unhappiness and lack of control. 

 

I think that maybe, instead of trying to keep her schedule the same as it was, you need to figure out how to build a schedule that works for both of them.  

I get that she loves a lot of things about the way things were.  But that doesn't mean that you can't build a schedule that both kids love.  It just won't look like the old one.  But start from scratch.  Think about what would work, and then build that from the ground up. 

We've been sort of kind of in your situation multiple times this year, in that we had a system and routine that really worked for two of my kids, and then the third threw a monkey wrench into that plan, and for a long time I really wanted to figure out how to fit him into a life that was working because I was so concerned about what they were losing.  But the reality is that my new kid deserved a life that was built around him too, and your little one deserves a routine that was built around her, not just to be crammed into something else.  And when I finally sat down and took all the pieces, and we have a lot of pieces, we came up with something that worked, until DS10's needs changed, and we changed again.  

What was your routine before?  Maybe writing it out would help figure out what it could look like again.  

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3 minutes ago, square_25 said:

I kind of want to say "No more Zoom!!" But then that seems mean. But it is SO disruptive. 

Ok, I'm not a counselor or too awesome a parent or anything, but did something happen with you as a kid that you're afraid to parent your kids and offend them? Must be I'm just so radically b&w. 

The Zoom class didn't work. It's over. Just dump it. 

But it seems like every time something is not working you're afraid to make that call. And I really respect the sensitivity to your kids, but it's also happening maybe so much that I'm wondering why you're afraid to make hard calls. 

YOUR KIDS WILL BE HAPPY ANYWAY. They will be happier if you make the hard calls.

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11 minutes ago, square_25 said:

For example, I mentioned that I have no idea how to get Russian done with DD7, and he said maybe I could give up half an hour of my work time for that, as he watches the kids :P.

I go back to my point. Why are you asking your dh to decide that for you? 

Part of homeschooling, and I'm just saying this, is the hutzpah you develop and the CONFIDENCE you're going to get as you MAKE THE HARD CALLS.

So do not be afraid to do this. Don't even be afraid to be wrong. 

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7 minutes ago, square_25 said:

She wants to be read to and to play with her sister and to lie on top of me and suck her thumb, lol. (She doesn't hug -- she only lies with her head on your stomach and appreciates the soft part.) She's little :-). 

If you download the Signing Time videos onto a kindle and she lies on your lap watching them while you work with your other, could that work? She'd need headphones obviously with the volume carefully adjusted.

Be creative. Or stream those Storyline audiobooks on youtube on the kindle with headphones while she gets her cuddles while you work with your other.

Does she have a dog bed/nest? Might be worth investing in. Might give her some coziness. Or a hanging swing/hammock thing. Ikea has an egg chair. Whatever you can find and install. Aamzon has them. 

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11 minutes ago, square_25 said:

I'm not trying to shortchange the little one :-). I'd like a schedule that works for both of them. And DD7 really does work independently often. I'm kind of hoping there's a way to strike a balance between their needs. 

 

I absolutely don't think you're trying to shortchange her!  But I do wonder if, because you've been more immersed in the routine with your older kid, than you were in your younger kid's school that you are very aware of what your older one is missing, and maybe underestimating what your younger one is missing?  

I think that sitting down and thinking about what she needs in her day, and what your older child needs in her day, and then building a schedule that prioritizes most, might help you move from that place.  

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13 minutes ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

 

I absolutely don't think you're trying to shortchange her!  But I do wonder if, because you've been more immersed in the routine with your older kid, than you were in your younger kid's school that you are very aware of what your older one is missing, and maybe underestimating what your younger one is missing?  

I think that sitting down and thinking about what she needs in her day, and what your older child needs in her day, and then building a schedule that prioritizes most, might help you move from that place.  

Or perhaps she was hoping the Zoom tele preschool would hit those bases and with that not working out she's left hanging...

Happily, it's a solvable problem. As Curious says, you're gonna make a new game plan this weekend and get it together. You've got this girlfriend. :wub: 

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7 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

Or perhaps she was hoping the Zoom tele preschool would hit those bases and with that not working out she's left hanging...

Happily, it's a solvable problem. As Curious says, you're gonna make a new game plan this weekend and get it together. You've got this girlfriend. :wub: 

 

Oh, I'm sure she's trying really hard to meet her little one's needs.  

I do think this is a solvable problem.  

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Have you sat your older kid down and talked them through the situation?  I don't mean the COVID situation, I mean the "Now your sister is home, and I've noticed this happening, (you're getting distracted, you get grumpy when . . . math is harder than it was" and brainstorm ideas?  My 9 year old, who is not particularly advanced, can absolutely have those difficult conversations, and it's been key to his buy in. 

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37 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

Ok, I'm not a counselor or too awesome a parent or anything, but did something happen with you as a kid that you're afraid to parent your kids and offend them? Must be I'm just so radically b&w. 

The Zoom class didn't work. It's over. Just dump it. 

But it seems like every time something is not working you're afraid to make that call. And I really respect the sensitivity to your kids, but it's also happening maybe so much that I'm wondering why you're afraid to make hard calls. 

YOUR KIDS WILL BE HAPPY ANYWAY. They will be happier if you make the hard calls.

I mean, we tried it once. I don't give up on things because they don't work once. It contains all of her preschool friends, so deciding that we're never ever going to do that because it went badly once is... premature. They are going to meet a few times a day for the next 3 months. We still need to think about how to fit that into our day, if we're going to. 

I'm not a particularly lenient parent, lol. But I'd like to troubleshoot before giving up. All of their friendships are on hold. This is uncharted territory. I have to figure it out. 

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Just now, CuriousMomof3 said:

Have you sat your older kid down and talked them through the situation?  I don't mean the COVID situation, I mean the "Now your sister is home, and I've noticed this happening, (you're getting distracted, you get grumpy when . . . math is harder than it was" and brainstorm ideas?  My 9 year old, who is not particularly advanced, can absolutely have those difficult conversations, and it's been key to his buy in. 

We've started to, but we've been in such a panicked mode that we've only been able to start the conversation. We generally have ongoing conversations about what's working for us and what's not. 

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19 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

Or perhaps she was hoping the Zoom tele preschool would hit those bases and with that not working out she's left hanging...

Happily, it's a solvable problem. As Curious says, you're gonna make a new game plan this weekend and get it together. You've got this girlfriend. :wub: 

I do have a routine with the little one, thankfully :-). As I've mentioned, she was only in preschool in the morning, so we spend a LOT of time per day with her. What she wants is to play with her sister, to be read to, to snuggle. She also wishes her dad was always around (until 18 months, she didn't let anyone but me around her, but for the last couple of years, her dad is her favorite) and she misses her friends. 

I think her needs are actually somewhat easier to meet, because socially she's still little enough to be very family-oriented. It's just hard to meet them at the same time as working with the older girl. 

I really do still need to figure out how much online activity to schedule and how that's going to fill in the rather large holes in their lives, and how to make sure it's not extremely disruptive. I really have no clue if Zoom classes are the answer. And I don't think her preschool teachers have gotten the hang of it either, yet -- again, this is all very new. 

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2 minutes ago, square_25 said:

I mean, we tried it once. I don't give up on things because they don't work once. It contains all of her preschool friends, so deciding that we're never ever going to do that because it went badly once is... premature. They are going to meet a few times a day for the next 3 months. We still need to think about how to fit that into our day, if we're going to. 

I'm not a particularly lenient parent, lol. But I'd like to troubleshoot before giving up. All of their friendships are on hold. This is uncharted territory. I have to figure it out. 

 

One thing that was really helpful for us, when DS9 was really struggling with DS10 who he saw as the interloper (which might be how your 7 year old is feeling to a much lesser degree), was to set boundaries that went both ways.  That, if you're going to expect periods of time when your little one does her own "work" and doesn't interrupt her sister's important work, you need to have time when you communicate that what DD3 is doing is important and ask DD7 to give her space.

Maybe Zoom preschool is just for the little one and you, with her on your lap and both of you paying attention to the screen, and your other daughter needs to work quietly on something else.  And then afterwards, you give a similar amount of undivided attention to DD7 to work through her math roadblocks with the same expectation for your little one.  

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38 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

If you download the Signing Time videos onto a kindle and she lies on your lap watching them while you work with your other, could that work? She'd need headphones obviously with the volume carefully adjusted.

We're pretty screen-free around her, and I'd really like not to start habits we'd then have to kick. 

We've been doing audiobooks, so maybe if I can get her to wear headphones, that's not a bad idea. 

43 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

go back to my point. Why are you asking your dh to decide that for you? 

Part of homeschooling, and I'm just saying this, is the hutzpah you develop and the CONFIDENCE you're going to get as you MAKE THE HARD CALLS.

So do not be afraid to do this. Don't even be afraid to be wrong. 

 

Well, the whole point is that I do NOT let DH decide. But I do know that he won't pick up the slack on the decision-making -- that before we reach an accommodation, he's going to know precisely what I need. And I do not know yet. 

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1 minute ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

 

One thing that was really helpful for us, when DS9 was really struggling with DS10 who he saw as the interloper (which might be how your 7 year old is feeling to a much lesser degree), was to set boundaries that went both ways.  That, if you're going to expect periods of time when your little one does her own "work" and doesn't interrupt her sister's important work, you need to have time when you communicate that what DD3 is doing is important and ask DD7 to give her space.

Maybe Zoom preschool is just for the little one and you, with her on your lap and both of you paying attention to the screen, and your other daughter needs to work quietly on something else.  And then afterwards, you give a similar amount of undivided attention to DD7 to work through her math roadblocks with the same expectation for your little one.  

The problem is that DD7 knows a lot of the kids and teachers in DD3.75's preschool (some of them were her Hebrew school teachers -- it's all in the same synagogue). So I think she'd be upset by that. 

I do actually make sure to have times that are special for each of them. If anything, I think the older girl sometimes has a harder time getting a word in, because of course she's at a much more rational age and isn't likely to hurl herself on the ground screaming ;-). But of course, the morning isn't as "planned" around the little one. 

What I was imagining was maybe having breaks between subjects that would be playtime for them. And perhaps a relatively strict schedule, so that while DD7 is working on harder stuff, DD3.75 is more out of the way, playing with Play-Doh or coloring or doing something that necessitates her being in another room ;-). I really wish I could include her in DD7's work, and I think there would have been times at which that's possible, but both the math and the virus project and the Russian aren't things she can be involved in and they all require concentration. She does ask to sit at the same table as DD7, but then that goes quite badly, unless DD7 is working on very rote stuff. 

I should probably plan some read alouds to both of them to break things up. DD7 generally prefers to read to herself, but I've been thinking about reading some history out loud to her, so perhaps the little one could be included in that. But then I think she'd get bored without pictures, hm. 

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Thinking about it, you're right that I'm expecting to have as much time with DD7 as I did before, and maybe I really won't. Not unless DH chips in more, and it's not like he's doing that little right now. 

Perhaps I really do need push more stuff to the evening, when DD3.75 is sleeping or going to bed. That's not anyone's best working time, but we've done Russian at that point a few times, and it's worked well. I don't know if her brain would be fresh enough for math, though... 

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1 minute ago, PeterPan said:

What does the 3 yo really want? Like if she wants to be near you guys while you work with dd7 (hello, jealousy insecurity whatever), then can there be contractual parameters? With ds, I locked him in a high chair. Once I stopped, well honestly it got dangerous and we lost him once. That was bad. 

But if you had a corner of that room with a menu of items, you could have a contractual agreement like to be here, this the noise expectation, blah blah.

You could order a play kitchen or bring something from the play room in.

This is similar to what I have always done with toddlers and preschoolers.  When I was working with older siblings, little ones always had three choices: 1) play with toys I had set up nearby with a reasonable "playing" noise level, 2) sit at the table and do their own play school work with a reasonable "school" noise level and minimal interruptions, or 3) straddle my lap with their head on my shoulder with no noise or interruptions.

We also heavily utilized a 15 minute sand timer so that they could really see and understand that they only had to last until the sand ran out and then I would focus on them for a bit.  And focusing on them did not necessarily mean play, play, play.  We might bond over putting in a load of laundry or wiping down a bathroom together.  Or they could help me cut up fruit or peel carrots for snack.  Or I might read a Spanish picture book to everyone.  Or they could play teacher and give a sibling spelling words that I whisper in their ear (which coincidentally is also really good speech therapy practice for them).

Wendy

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14 minutes ago, square_25 said:

Thinking about it, you're right that I'm expecting to have as much time with DD7 as I did before, and maybe I really won't. Not unless DH chips in more, and it's not like he's doing that little right now. 

Perhaps I really do need push more stuff to the evening, when DD3.75 is sleeping or going to bed. That's not anyone's best working time, but we've done Russian at that point a few times, and it's worked well. I don't know if her brain would be fresh enough for math, though... 

For the time being I would try to think outside the box.

Uninterrupted time for math during the day seems to be your priority.  Perfect, I would expect you can probably reasonably get 30-45 minutes (probably in two chunks) if you think about how you can simultaneously meet some of the three year old's needs during that time.  Maybe she could spend the first 20-30 minutes in the bathtub; I have done a lot of school with my older kids in the hallway outside the bathroom while I supervised a bathing beauty. 

Then after that "alone" time, she will probably need some mom time, so maybe the 7 year old keeps working for a few minutes while you get the 3 year old dressed and the two of you make a snack together.  Then you have food on your side while you try to get your second math session in.  When my kids were little I recorded myself reading some of their favorite picture books.  I made the recording just about 20 minutes long so that I could use it as a "timer".  If you could pop some headphones on her and have a short audiobook, then you could set the expectation that while she eats her snack she either cuddles quietly with you or plays with some quiet toys nearby until the stories stop.

It sounds like the other subjects you are trying to cover are the writing project and Russian.  I'm not sure what is required of you for the writing project, but maybe that could be moved to the evening.  Russian, on the other hand, I think might be easy to incorporate into your day around the 3 year old even if she doesn't want to learn it.  It might not be exactly the Russian "lessons" the 7 year old is used to, but maybe you could decide you are going to focus on Russian in context for the next couple months.  Read picture books, listen to songs, help the 7 year old memorize a short poem in Russian.  Speak to the 7 year old in Russian (at whatever level she is at) while she and the 3 year old play with playdough.  The three of you could play store and you could be the Russian speaking shopkeeper...I know my 3 year olds wouldn't care what language I was speaking as long as I was part of the game.  Teach the 7 year old how to play I Spy or Go Fish or Rock, Paper, Scissors in Russian...those are things you could do with both kids simultaneously using different languages for each.

Wendy

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Well, today we started working toward some sort of new normal. 

10 yr old dd's "playdate" was talking on the phone with her best friend (her niece) while they played a game "together."  Not exactly sure what they did, but they talked on speaker phone for well over an hr.  I know there were dress-ups and singing involved in there somewhere. It put her in a much happier mood. 

We had family game night tonight.  Older 2 dd's are hanging out together this evening.  I'm really glad they have each other.  

Not sure what to do about our Aspie. He is not coping well. While I have been worried about the physical health of 2 of my kids with serious health issues, his mental state is rapidly moving to biggest concern.

Today I made cornbread since we don't have any bread.  Tomorrow I am going to actually make bread.  (Today was a day of fast and prayer for us and we are all too tempted by homemade bread to have made it.  But the cornbread was actually really good.)

14 yr old dd finished a cross-stitch project.  She also has a skirt she needs to finish.

I think I have decided to try to work on a store front and go ahead and get my business back up and running sometime in the future.  I was homeschooling my grandkids 1 day per week.  Having that gone and all of our activities gone, I guess I have time to figure it all out (even if I really, really don't want to......Ugh....I am a horrible businesswoman.)

 

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38 minutes ago, wendyroo said:

For the time being I would try to think outside the box.

Uninterrupted time for math during the day seems to be your priority.  Perfect, I would expect you can probably reasonably get 30-45 minutes (probably in two chunks) if you think about how you can simultaneously meet some of the three year old's needs during that time.  Maybe she could spend the first 20-30 minutes in the bathtub; I have done a lot of school with my older kids in the hallway outside the bathroom while I supervised a bathing beauty. 

Then after that "alone" time, she will probably need some mom time, so maybe the 7 year old keeps working for a few minutes while you get the 3 year old dressed and the two of you make a snack together.  Then you have food on your side while you try to get your second math session in.  When my kids were little I recorded myself reading some of their favorite picture books.  I made the recording just about 20 minutes long so that I could use it as a "timer".  If you could pop some headphones on her and have a short audiobook, then you could set the expectation that while she eats her snack she either cuddles quietly with you or plays with some quiet toys nearby until the stories stop.

It sounds like the other subjects you are trying to cover are the writing project and Russian.  I'm not sure what is required of you for the writing project, but maybe that could be moved to the evening.  Russian, on the other hand, I think might be easy to incorporate into your day around the 3 year old even if she doesn't want to learn it.  It might not be exactly the Russian "lessons" the 7 year old is used to, but maybe you could decide you are going to focus on Russian in context for the next couple months.  Read picture books, listen to songs, help the 7 year old memorize a short poem in Russian.  Speak to the 7 year old in Russian (at whatever level she is at) while she and the 3 year old play with playdough.  The three of you could play store and you could be the Russian speaking shopkeeper...I know my 3 year olds wouldn't care what language I was speaking as long as I was part of the game.  Teach the 7 year old how to play I Spy or Go Fish or Rock, Paper, Scissors in Russian...those are things you could do with both kids simultaneously using different languages for each.

Wendy

 

I think I'm going to try to push more stuff to the evening :-). That's what we thought of when brainstorming with DH tonight, anyway. 

DD7's Russian lessons are entirely spoken, but DD3.75 really doesn't like us speaking it and asks us to stop. Since I'd rather not force her to learn it unless she wants to (I've seen this dynamic in too many families), I'd really like not to speak Russian around her if I don't have to. However, some days DD7 watches Russian cartoons, and that I think would be fun for them to do together :-). On other days, I'll move Russian to the evening -- we tried that tonight, and it went well. 

I think I'll also put strict time limits on the math -- the preschool Zoom meeting is supposed to be at 9:30 or 10:00, so we'll see if we can incorporate it into the day. I'm also going to put some "overflow" room for math in the evening, after DD3.75 goes to bed. So then I'll try to do more rote math in the morning, while DD3.75 is being read to or eating breakfast. 

I'm going to have to really brainstorm for our writing projects. Maybe I'll try to see if I can find something special for DD3.75 to do during that time. A bath might work! 

Thanks for the ideas :-). I'll keep brainstorming. 

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@square_25, those sound like great first steps.

We're actually getting more homeschooling done than ever. The hospital is doing everything they can to reduce our time there, and so while we still go, we're home in time to do some school work in the afternoon, and music, OT, and psychotherapy for DS10, and sports for the other two have been cancelled.  

I need a new schedule though.  I do better when there's a written schedule hanging on the wall, and we are somewhere close to it.  It makes my teacher heart happy!  

Edited by CuriousMomof3
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10 minutes ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

We're actually getting more homeschooling done than ever. The hospital is doing everything they can to reduce our time there, and so while we still go, we're home in time to do some school work in the afternoon, and music, OT, and psychotherapy for DS10, and sports for the other two have been cancelled.  

I need a new schedule though.  I do better when there's a written schedule hanging on the wall, and we are somewhere close to it.  It makes my teacher heart happy!  

I'm in awe of everything you manage to do.  You are truly inspirational.  

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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3 hours ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

I'm in awe of everything you manage to do.  You are truly inspirational.  

 

Aw thanks,

To be clear "more than ever before" would only apply to healthy kids, and we've gone from maybe 3 days a week of math, if we're lucky to 5, and now some reading more often than not.  It's not like we're doing some huge amount.

DS10 isn't sleeping great, so he's sleeping a lot in the daytime, which means he's doing less than before, although he's enjoying it when he's awake.  

Edited by CuriousMomof3

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18 minutes ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

@square_25, those sound like great first steps.

We're actually getting more homeschooling done than ever. The hospital is doing everything they can to reduce our time there, and so while we still go, we're home in time to do some school work in the afternoon, and music, OT, and psychotherapy for DS10, and sports for the other two have been cancelled.  

I need a new schedule though.  I do better when there's a written schedule hanging on the wall, and we are somewhere close to it.  It makes my teacher heart happy!  

Yeah, I also like written schedules on the wall! I took down our schedule from the fall and spring just recently, sigh. It was so pretty... and color-coded by hand... I enjoy making schedules a bit too much ;-). 

I'm sort of tempted to make a pretty schedule for the coming months, but of course, it'd be better to figure out what works first. 

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Just now, square_25 said:

Yeah, I also like written schedules on the wall! I took down our schedule from the fall and spring just recently, sigh. It was so pretty... and color-coded by hand... I enjoy making schedules a bit too much ;-). 

I'm sort of tempted to make a pretty schedule for the coming months, but of course, it'd be better to figure out what works first. 

 

If you make your schedule in google sheets, then you can color it beautifully, and when you change it there are no eraser marks.

Ask me how I know.  We refer to making schedules as "doing Sudoku" in our house, because it takes kind of the same skills.  

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1 minute ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

 

If you make your schedule in google sheets, then you can color it beautifully, and when you change it there are no eraser marks.

Ask me how I know.  We refer to making schedules as "doing Sudoku" in our house, because it takes kind of the same skills.  

Hah, true, but we don't have a printer. And currently we don't have access to DH's work printer, either... we might buy a printer, though. 

I kinda like making the schedule by hand, lol. Which is probably totally ridiculous and irrational and I should get over myself :D. 

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@square_25- Zoom for a three year old? Bad idea. Sound like a way to still justify collecting tuition. I'd drop it. Adults get frustrated with teleconferencing. For 3 year olds? Kind of wondering who came up with that plan exactly. You are in a hard situation- I think the ladies on this thread are giving you (and all of us) excellent advice. Lot of wisdom there. Sometimes it's just hard to come to terms with new situations, so you have my sympathies there. 

We have turned to old fashioned pen pal'ing for the younger kids to keep up with friends. They think this is the greatest thing ever- to get mail in the mail box. Who'd have thought.

When I get tired of talking to them I say "why don't we call and check on Grandma!" and then they call my Mom. When they're done I say "Now let's call Grammy!" And they call dh's Mom. There goes 90 minutes between the two of them on the phone with the Grandparents and words not into my ears but someone else's. Yay, for no long distance! 

Monday we will be back to a "new normal" schedule. Dh is going into the office for one, single, spectacular day (if this goes as planned)- and I'm going to take advantage use it to mark the new week- in the new schooling area. We have had the week of mourning. Now to turn to the new normal. 

 

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5 minutes ago, square_25 said:

Yeah, I also like written schedules on the wall! I took down our schedule from the fall and spring just recently, sigh. It was so pretty... and color-coded by hand... I enjoy making schedules a bit too much ;-). 

I'm sort of tempted to make a pretty schedule for the coming months, but of course, it'd be better to figure out what works first. 

So you could make the schedule as a table and print. Nuts just put it on each person's device as the screen saver and they can swipe to sleep mode to see it, boom. 

Or you could put the components on index cards and use something flexible like a pocket chart. I did that one year with dd, and it's great when you need things to be more flexible, no so set in stone.

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1 minute ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

@square_25- Zoom for a three year old? Bad idea. Sound like a way to still justify collecting tuition. I'd drop it. Adults get frustrated with teleconferencing. For 3 year olds? Kind of wondering who came up with that plan exactly. You are in a hard situation- I think the ladies on this thread are giving you (and all of us) excellent advice. Lot of wisdom there. Sometimes it's just hard to come to terms with new situations, so you have my sympathies there. 

We have turned to old fashioned pen pal'ing for the younger kids to keep up with friends. They think this is the greatest thing ever- to get mail in the mail box. Who'd have thought.

When I get tired of talking to them I say "why don't we call and check on Grandma!" and then they call my Mom. When they're done I say "Now let's call Grammy!" And they call dh's Mom. There goes 90 minutes between the two of them on the phone with the Grandparents and words not into my ears but someone else's. Yay, for no long distance! 

Monday we will be back to a "new normal" schedule. Dh is going into the office for one, single, spectacular day (if this goes as planned)- and I'm going to take advantage use it to mark the new week- in the new schooling area. We have had the week of mourning. Now to turn to the new normal. 

 

 

I think they are just scrambling. Everyone around here is trying Zoom, somehow... I'm skeptical that it'll work, but maybe if they just read a book out loud and mute everyone else, and everyone at least gets to see each other, it'll be nice. Anyway, I'm going to give it a chance and see. I'm pretty willing to drop it if need be. 

Ooh, I like the pen pal idea. I'll suggest it to DD7! And I'm going to see if I can set up some Skype "play dates." I'm still too overwhelmed to deal, to be honest. And NYC isn't a fun place to be right now. 

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Just now, PeterPan said:

So you could make the schedule as a table and print. Nuts just put it on each person's device as the screen saver and they can swipe to sleep mode to see it, boom. 

Or you could put the components on index cards and use something flexible like a pocket chart. I did that one year with dd, and it's great when you need things to be more flexible, no so set in stone.

What's a pocket chart? A flexible schedule sounds neat. 

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3 minutes ago, square_25 said:

Hah, true, but we don't have a printer. And currently we don't have access to DH's work printer, either... we might buy a printer, though. 

I kinda like making the schedule by hand, lol. Which is probably totally ridiculous and irrational and I should get over myself :D. 

 

I take as screenshot, and make it the background screen of all the iPads.  Since I have a kid who uses an iPad for communication, there's always one within reach, often several, so it works even better than hanging it on the wall.  I just used "hanging it on the wall" as a short cut.  

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2 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

So you could make the schedule as a table and print. Nuts just put it on each person's device as the screen saver and they can swipe to sleep mode to see it, boom. 

Or you could put the components on index cards and use something flexible like a pocket chart. I did that one year with dd, and it's great when you need things to be more flexible, no so set in stone.

 

Great minds, we think alike!

 

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2 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Zoom for a three year old? Bad idea. Sound like a way to still justify collecting tuition. I'd drop it.

Bingo. Mainly because the draw was social and it's missing what makes social among 3-4 year olds work. 

Besides, what are we telling them if we're like THE WORLD HAS FALLEN APART YOU CAN'T SEE YOUR FRIENDS FOR A MONTH, kwim? Like seriously??? Pretend you just took a world cruise, a month long family vacation, are on a boat for the summer. They will survive.

Play among 3-4 yo should be creative, collaborative, with turn taking and role changing and lots of language. None of that is happening in zoom. Now a lot of our intervention and therapy services in our state are going to tele, and they will be great. But that's where that teacher/therapist is essential and doing something the parent can't do on their own.

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4 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

You are in a hard situation- I think the ladies on this thread are giving you (and all of us) excellent advice. Lot of wisdom there. Sometimes it's just hard to come to terms with new situations, so you have my sympathies there. 

Weirdly enough, I'm generally very good at redirecting when things aren't working. It's just hard to do at the same time as feeling incredibly panicked and freaked out and having one's life totally upended. 

I'll figure it out, I'm sure. It's just all new and scary and ugh. 

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Just now, PeterPan said:

Play among 3-4 yo should be creative, collaborative, with turn taking and role changing and lots of language. None of that is happening in zoom. Now a lot of our intervention and therapy services in our state are going to tele, and they will be great. But that's where that teacher/therapist is essential and doing something the parent can't do on their own.

Oh, gosh, no one is trying to have them play. It's just saying hello and singing a song together or something. Just to keep the kids connected. I don't think it's an amazing idea, but I also don't think I can trick the kids into thinking this is an awesome vacation, so trying for some semblance of normality doesn't seem horrible. Anyway, I'm going to reevaluate in a week. I may very well eventually give up in disgust. 

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Here's a pocket chart.

https://www.discountschoolsupply.com/stem-curriculum/language-literacy/language-centers-card-sets/pocket-chart/p/2809

I'd probably put velcro on the back of the schedule pieces instead, and make two strips, one for "done" and one for "to do" and let the 3 year old move them over.  

But pocket charts work well also.  That little bit of proprioceptive input when you pull off the velcro is just so satisfying to me.  Yes, I'm weird, I own that.

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2 minutes ago, square_25 said:

maybe if they just read a book out loud and mute everyone else, and everyone at least gets to see each other, it'll be nice.

You are joking, right??? That sounds horrible.

Distance education for 3-4 is a whole genre of its own. It can be done well. BJU, for instance, has recorded dvds for preschool where there are pauses to let the kids think and respond. But seriously, you're going to disrupt your whole day so someone can come online and read a book to your kid??? I get it when it's a drop off and there's a lot more to the picture. 

 

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Just now, PeterPan said:

You are joking, right??? That sounds horrible.

Distance education for 3-4 is a whole genre of its own. It can be done well. BJU, for instance, has recorded dvds for preschool where there are pauses to let the kids think and respond. But seriously, you're going to disrupt your whole day so someone can come online and read a book to your kid??? I get it when it's a drop off and there's a lot more to the picture. 

She wants to see her friends and teachers. I'm not going to disrupt my whole day, but it seems easy enough to make that point in the day a break, at least unless it keeps being a disaster (in which case I'll reevaluate.) It's not like we have a busy schedule right now, anyway! 

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3 minutes ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

Here's a pocket chart.

https://www.discountschoolsupply.com/stem-curriculum/language-literacy/language-centers-card-sets/pocket-chart/p/2809

I'd probably put velcro on the back of the schedule pieces instead, and make two strips, one for "done" and one for "to do" and let the 3 year old move them over.  

But pocket charts work well also.  That little bit of proprioceptive input when you pull off the velcro is just so satisfying to me.  Yes, I'm weird, I own that.

With my dd I used a really wide one and would slide them over or we would flip the pieces over. So colored index cards, write the subject, and then flip/slide/remove to show completion.

But velcro and laminating is awesome too. :biggrin:

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Some people will use drawer towers or just a small 8X10 paper with the squares velcroed on for the tasks. It's really just what floats your boat.

The advantage of a printed schedule is it allows you to have more complexity, insert choices, have goals of longer duration, etc. So for instance on my dd's checklists, over time they would be a week plan showing things she was to complete by the end of the week. So there's some transition to your thought process, age appropriateness. A 4 yo you're going to have a clear plan, check check, check. And with a budding 3rd grader you might have a plan that includes a book project by the end of the week or a choice menu of things she can do for masterful play/free time, kwim?

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@PeterPan- can I just say you are winning the day on comic relief?  😂 Between the pot smoking and the exciting pocket chart I am over here absolutely dying. 🤣 I am so glad dh has ear buds in, because he'd think I'd lost my mind if I told him all of this thread. (He's well aware the Hive is it's own entity. ) 

"Well, so I started this thread complaining about how you were really loud on teleconferences and everything was disjointed. Then a day later, one of us was up in the tree again, and then a few of us were trying to talk her down because that's what we do, and then PeterPan brought up......." 

We've already bought a chest freezer and some Schwan's in the last 72 hours thanks to this place and now he'd be like, so they're wanting you to buy pot too?!? (not really- I know- I just seriously needed the laugh). Thank you. 

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6 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

 

You and I might possibly find this hard to believe, but there are some people out there who are less excited about pocket charts and the sound of velcro than you might think.  I can't imagine that they're common, but they do exist.  

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1 minute ago, PeterPan said:

Some people will use drawer towers or just a small 8X10 paper with the squares velcroed on for the tasks. It's really just what floats your boat.

The advantage of a printed schedule is it allows you to have more complexity, insert choices, have goals of longer duration, etc. So for instance on my dd's checklists, over time they would be a week plan showing things she was to complete by the end of the week. So there's some transition to your thought process, age appropriateness. A 4 yo you're going to have a clear plan, check check, check. And with a budding 3rd grader you might have a plan that includes a book project by the end of the week or a choice menu of things she can do for masterful play/free time, kwim?

We don't really work like that, to be honest :-). We read and work on the little one's reading, she draws and colors, they play together, we play games and do puzzles, the big kid does math and writing and Russian and piano. But we don't currently have very short-term projects for anything but piano. 

We're pretty unschooly in some ways. We just kind of move forward and check in with everyone along the way. 

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1 minute ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

and the exciting pocket chart

Don't you be knocking my pocket charts! How do you think I have time to go to Jamaica and learn all these essential life skills about how to chill and that everything's gonna be alright? :biggrin:

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1 minute ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

 

You and I might possibly find this hard to believe, but there are some people out there who are less excited about pocket charts and the sound of velcro than you might think.  I can't imagine that they're common, but they do exist.  

I have to admit... I'm more excited about the possibility of buying a printer and printing many lovely colorful weekly schedules... 

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1 minute ago, square_25 said:

We don't really work like that, to be honest :-). We read and work on the little one's reading, she draws and colors, they play together, we play games and do puzzles, the big kid does math and writing and Russian and piano. But we don't currently have very short-term projects for anything but piano. 

We're pretty unschooly in some ways. We just kind of move forward and check in with everyone along the way. 

 

I'd be more likely to build a picture schedule for "who mommy works with" that goes Little Sister, Big Sister, Funtime (altogether), Little Sister, Big Sister Funtime! Because to most social 3 year olds the "who" is more important than the what. 

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Just now, PeterPan said:

Don't you be knocking my pocket charts! How do you think I have time to go to Jamaica and learn all these essential life skills about how to chill and that everything's gonna be alright? :biggrin:

😂 

For the rest of my days, when I hear "Don't worry, about a thing," I'm going to think of you. 🥰

And if dh were not threatening to buy Jeep accessories in retaliation for further spontaneous homeschool plague purchases, I would probably totally buy a pocket chart. 😉

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1 minute ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

 

You and I might possibly find this hard to believe, but there are some people out there who are less excited about pocket charts and the sound of velcro than you might think.  I can't imagine that they're common, but they do exist.  

Oh but they're such a *small* indulgence. You can even get them at Dollar Tree for $1. Not now, except maybe if you order a box of 45 and share, haha. But maybe she has a spare shoe pocket thing in her closet? Maybe something creative. Maybe just the *concept* kwim? Like your refrigerator door gets converted. Or a BAKING SHEET. You could use a jelly roll pan, no problemo. Shh, but you can even put velcro on a white board. You can use a sharpie on a whiteboard to make permanent lines and make your own non pockety chart. 

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