We have been homeschooling for 25 years. Our oldest is going to be 29 this year and the youngest is going to be 10. We have probably tried every method know to man to teach each of them in the way that they learn best. “M” and “C” were the first ones with whom we “practice homeschool” (kind of like doctors “practice” medicine). We didn’t know exactly what we were doing, but we knew that we had their best interests at heart, we loved them, and we wanted them to learn. The problem is that I schooled with a lot of diligence and little grace with “M”. She was a good student and was pretty cooperative and just the fact that she is a girl made her easier to teach in some respects. Then there was “C”. He didn’t like to write with his pencil and paper…he wanted to play darts with them. So, we investigated new ways of teaching the old things (reading and writing). The reading came along pretty well, and he and she also seemed to do very well with math (especially oral math which we practiced EVERYWHERE). When it came to writing with “C” we decided to do handwriting in fingerpaint and sand. That worked really well. By the time that they were 4 years old all of the children with the exception of “N” were able to read, tie their shoes, and write in cursive.
I think if there is one thing that I have learned through our homeschooling experience is that every day is new, and each child is different. To think that you can have one cut and dry method for teaching all of them, and expect to have good results, is a misconception. General concepts yes, but overall they are all such individuals. At one point, when we and our neighbors shared kids we had three or four grades being taught at once…we would just adapt it differently (expectations) for each child…I would teach three or four subjects and he would do the same…my house in the morning and their house in the afternoon…it worked really well.
Check back on this one later. I will add a lot more, but things are hopping here and I need to get some other things done.