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    What would you combine in this scenario?

    First, I promise once I figure this out I will stop bugging you gracious people :-)

    It's just that I want to place an order here in Feb. to get the free shipping, and I find myself all over the place as far as what to do next year. Yes I've asked this before but now it's "go time" and I can't decide! Here's the background-I'll have a 1st, 2nd and 3rd grader next year. We are doing some MP this year (with K enrichment). As you might imagine, having kids this close in age (all 3 born within 2.5 years), I keep thinking that any sane person would combine as much as possible. I mean, I'd be crazy NOT to, right? But then I hear from people who say to just keep the kids going in their own core and that it's actually easier in the long run running 3 cores instead of trying to combine. I'm not at the place that this really makes sense to me because they're all so "at the elbow" right now and I'm thankful for ANYthing that I can combine!

    So, as I look at next year-I see that 3rd grade really vamps up. My 3rd grader is more than capable of the workload and he's a hard, serious worker so not problems there. My other two girls are right there with him. My Kinder is actually catching up with the 1st grader a bit as she'd doing first grade math (CLE) and starting AAR 3 this week. So ability wise, they're all 3 very close and very capable.

    I continue to have 2 trains of thought:
    1. Keep my rising 3rd grader on track-start him with core 3M as written except we wouldn't do Mammals. But then the next year, do I teach another round of Greek Myths/50 States, etc, and then another round the next year? See, that seems a bit nuts to me. Wouldn't it be more fun to teach them together? As in...

    2. Wait until the following year (2nd, 3rd, 4th) and do the 3M core then-essentially always going with the middle child's core (except for Latin, Lit, math, spelling which they're on their own levels). But, would I be cheating my 2nd grader doing Green Myths/50 States with her at such a young age? Would that mess her up in the future getting to the classical studies too early, or do you think it would be fine? And, would that mess up my oldest being that he would always be 1 year behind in classical studies/christian studies/science, etc? Or is that really no big deal in the long run?

    I don't know if I'm overthinking this. I just want to start off doing the right thing so I don't kick myself at this time next year. So, I could start my guy off in 3M, or I could do 2nd grade enrichment with everybody and just stick with the middle child's core. Right now, I'm feeling like there is just not enough of ME to go around, and certainly never enough time.

    So all of you seasoned veterans, please tell me...what would YOU do?

    #2
    It’s completely fine to just do 2nd grade Enrichment next year and stick with the middle child’s core after that. This will give you more time to focus on Phonics and Math without stressing or stretching yourself too thin.
    The following year I’d do Greek Myths from 3M completely the first year focusing on the drill questions. I’d save the States and Capitals for the following year so it wouldn’t need to be modified. I think memorizing the States, Capitals and their spellings would be easier for a true 3rd grade student. The Myths are fun and interesting and my younger kids were always able to follow along and mostly memorize the drill questions​​​​​​. Your oldest will be fine a year “behind” in those subjects.
    Last edited by PrarieGirl; 03-07-2019, 01:57 PM.
    ~Sarah~

    2019-2020
    DS 8th grade MP, CTP & IEW
    DD 3rd grade MP
    DD 2nd grade MP
    DD 7th grade away school
    DD Sophomore away school

    Comment


      #3
      Hi Meadowlark!

      I like Sarah's suggestion for you...and that is definitely one way you could go.

      I think one thing I would be careful with is your concern about the youngest always being pushed a bit more than might be comfortable. Usually when we suggest combining, it works the best when both children are in the same "stage" of school...that is, both primary, or both grammar, or both upper school. The harder times to combine are when you have them straddling stages...one is starting grammar, while the other is still in Primary. That is the situation you have...and you will have for at least two years. So even if you take it easy this year, the youngest may really struggle next year when you try to combine. But there's no real way to tell that right now, when you are trying to make the decision, you know?

      I have had a couple of other thoughts, but am really wondering a bit more about your kids...what are their actual ages? And do they work well together? Are any of them really competitive with each other? Fast workers, slow workers? Give us a bit more of their dynamic - I think it would help.

      AMDG,
      Sarah
      2019-2020 - 9th Year with MP
      DD, 18, Homeschool grad; Art major/philosophy minor
      DS, 16
      DD, 14
      DD, 12
      DD, 10
      DD, 7.5
      DD, 5.5
      +DS+
      DS, 18 months

      Comment


        #4
        I keep trying to think of what I want to say... I TOTALLY get the desire to combine, not just for the ease of teaching, but for our family learning and experiencing these books and concepts together. But my kids aren't quite close enough in age for that to really work (9, 7, 5, and 3 on Friday).

        That said, I do think it would be easier for you to do the 2nd grade Enrichment with everyone this year, then move up with the older two the next. As for your new 1st grader... I might borrow some elements from the 1st grade Enrichment the next year (because it's the level you haven't done yet) and let them tag along with the 3M lessons if they want, but without and any out put expectations.

        Then at that point you'll have to reevaluate.

        You also have to consider that the history sequence is based on the child's maturity level. At some point you'll have to split that. I think you'll end up in a place where your middle is combined in some classes with the older and some with the younger. I actually DO combine my 9 and 7 yo in Latin, but I'm proably "holding back" my 9 yo a tad (he doesn't complain, trust me!).

        As another consideration, we're doing the Christian Studies orally during our Morning Time (which also includes other religious elements such as hymns and virtues). We're finishing up book one (planned for 4th for New Users) and will be moving onto book two in the fall DESPITE my daughter beginning 3M. We're just gonna loop along (like the enrichment guides for primary) so eventually everyone will get though the Bible during their grammar school years and at THAT time will be expected to memorize things and answer questions.

        Of course this fall will be the FIRST time I'm doing multiple cores so... who knows what will happen?
        ~ Carrie
        Catholic mom to four - ages 10, 8, 5, and 3
        7th year homeschooling, 2nd year MP!
        2019-2020: 5M (LC year 2), 3M (LC year 2), and K enrichment!

        Comment


          #5
          I am essentially splitting my middle child between the youngest and oldest cores, but he will be 8. I think in your case, I would do 3M with the oldest, minus Classical/Christian. (Do Into to comp this year). I would use the 2nd Enrichment for oldest and look closely at the “extras” in the enrichment and have the oldest do that. Next year, do 3A/4th for new users. The 2nd grader can sit in, but you will have to evaluate the following year what to do. The 3rd grader will be getting some American History through the history read alouds, geography of states, + more info in the “Don’t know much of the 50 states”. Christian Studies could wait and just focus on your Faith that year. We are just doing Faith and Life, BC catechism, Bible Reading as outlined in F&L 3, Saint study. (For my 3rd grader).

          i would treat Classical/Christian like your Enrichment cycle. The only exception is Greek Myths. I recently learned that HLS cottage school in KY actually offers Greek. MYTHS/FMOR alternating years, so this could work for you. The first year you have 3rd/4th graders doing Greek Myths/Christian Studies 1. Next year everyone does FMOR/ Christian Studies 2, etc. at that point, maybe in the summer you review Greek Myths with the youngest, before Famous men of greece/Christian Studies 3. At that point you have older students and the older two may take different courses?
          Last edited by howiecram; 02-25-2019, 09:31 AM.
          Christine

          (2019/2020)
          DD1 8/23/09 - SC5/6
          DS2 9/1/11 - SC3,4, 5/6 combo
          DD3 2/9/13 -SC2 to start, MP1 second semester

          Previous Years
          DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4’
          DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, SC2)
          DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK)

          Comment


            #6
            Sarah had some very good advice and I agree that it is easier to combine when they are in the same stage.

            I have been in your situation. My children are 12, 11, 11, 9 & 8. The nine year old catches up to the older 3 part of the year & then I have 12, 11, 11, 10, 8! I have combined in the past and it has been okay. It is easier on me, for I only have one core to focus on. The oldest has done the best, the middle do okay and the youngest keep up. In the beginning I didn’t see the differences, but as we continued the difference became apparent.

            Now I have spit them into their own cores because I have found that is where each child shines. The work is all at their level. In addition, there is no way my 4th grader could do 7th grade work next year. She could do the 6th grade work this year, but she wouldn’t get the full benefit of it. She would just be scratching the surface. It is starting to require more deeper thinking than she is ready for. It does mean more juggling of cores, but there is quite a bit one can do independently once it has become routine or explained.

            If I was to do it again with your ages, I would do all separate cores, but combine for enrichment. The first year is the most challenging with all different cores, but the next year is a lot easier because you have already taught but one core (the new core for the oldest). Since you have already taught the previous cores, you become more proficient at those cores and it is easier to see what you may need to tweek for your individual child and how long something should take. And, the next year I only have to focus on learning one new core.

            As to your two trains of thought, the first one is how I would do it because it would be easier for me long term.

            The second idea would work, just keep in mind that the younger will have to work harder to keep up as you get in the upper grades because she will always be working a grade level above. This difference is not as apparent in the younger grades. And no, you will not mess her up by doing Greek Myths/50 states at such a young age. You will probably have to tweek it for her to be successful – I would be hard for a 2nd grader to spell all of that. And I don’t think your older will be messed up either, he will still be getting more than most students.

            If you really want to combine, I would suggest putting the two older ones in 3A and keep the younger in their own core. You would only have 2 cores then.

            Just my two cents.

            Michelle

            2018-2019
            Dd 6th grade MP
            Dd 5th grade MP
            Dd 5th grade MP
            Dd 3rd grade MP
            Ds 2nd grade MP

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by KF2000 View Post
              Hi Meadowlark!

              I like Sarah's suggestion for you...and that is definitely one way you could go.

              I think one thing I would be careful with is your concern about the youngest always being pushed a bit more than might be comfortable. Usually when we suggest combining, it works the best when both children are in the same "stage" of school...that is, both primary, or both grammar, or both upper school. The harder times to combine are when you have them straddling stages...one is starting grammar, while the other is still in Primary. That is the situation you have...and you will have for at least two years. So even if you take it easy this year, the youngest may really struggle next year when you try to combine. But there's no real way to tell that right now, when you are trying to make the decision, you know?

              I have had a couple of other thoughts, but am really wondering a bit more about your kids...what are their actual ages? And do they work well together? Are any of them really competitive with each other? Fast workers, slow workers? Give us a bit more of their dynamic - I think it would help.

              AMDG,
              Sarah
              Hi Sarah,
              Yes, thanks for asking. Here is more info about my kids for you to ponder (you know, in your "spare" time, lol) I will speak in terms of where they are NOW so as to now to confuse us.

              My 2nd grader (boy) turned 8 in October, so is an older 2nd grader. He went to public school 1st grade and did great. He got to the middle of AAR 2 in Kindergarten and was placed in the #2 reading group (out of 4). He's chugging along now very nicely with the 2nd grade lit guides. I felt like they were all pretty easy but now that we've hit Little House, I feel that it's right where he needs to be. He also reads short chapter books and is currently LOVING the Thornton Burgess animal books. We are composing the sentences together for the lit guides for the most part, but I'm giving him a bit of freedom now and he can write (and spell) a beautiful sentence on his own. He's also doing great in PL-no problems memorizing or anything there. He is a diligent, serious worker who does his very best at whatever I give him.

              My 1st grader (girl) was also born in October and is an older 1st grader. She was in public school K too. They are exactly 12 months and 4 days apart. Her skills are much the same. She's almost done with AAR 3 and is a month shy from starting 2nd grade math. She's missed only 3 spelling words all year so far too in Traditional Spelling 1. So as far as I can tell, she's very grade level capable as well.

              My kinder (girl) is probably ahead of the game. She will turn 6 in March. She went to a 1/2 day preschool last year and did great. She's about to complete AAR 2 and start 3. She did BJU's K5 math the first semester. I basically just had to show her the page and she did it. So she is on 103 of CLE's 1st grade math now. She is like a little sponge-recitating her older brother's Latin and she is just a bright little cookie from what I can tell.

              So to sum things up, they are all on grade level or a little above. They work really well together and no, no one is competitive. They are all pretty good, fast workers who work off of a checklist each morning. Is there anything else you'd like to know? I'm still just totally confused. I will definitely keep Christian Studies together but beyond that, I'm still unsure. I appreciate you giving this some thought-and to everyone who has commented, thank you!

              Comment


                #8
                Meadowlark,
                Thank you for the additional information. It does really help to get a picture of your situation to flesh things out a bit more. It sounds like you have been having a great year of school, that your kids are all doing well across the board, and that they are all really, really well-placed right now. So, I guess I just have one more question for you: why do you need to rock the boat by changing them? You have them all in separate grades, they all sound well-suited for where they are, they are all growing in skills well, you don't seem to have any real trouble spots, and you are making it work to have three kids in school. That (to me) sounds ideal, and my advice to you would be to try to continue the pattern you have started by simply "doing the next thing" for each child.

                If the idea of having three "cores" feels intimidating, then start with a blank sheet of paper. Start with your oldest child. Write down each subject area and what he is doing now. What is his next logical thing to do next in each area? Then repeat of the two girls. THESE LISTS should be your "core" for each child.

                THEN, see what you can add in, comfortably, on top of these lists. Maybe it is something for each child; maybe it is an enrichment program that you do together; maybe it is a set of read aloud books; maybe it is music enrichment; or (gasp) maybe it is NOTHING. Maybe what is essential for each child is the max you can comfortably do. Or it is enough to get you started, and then when November rolls around (when MP usually does free shipping again!) decide then that there is something you guys could manage to do altogether because everyone is chugging along really well.

                Before you responded, and I tried to think of ideas for you...I was struggling too. But after reading your post, this is immediately what sprang to mind. So I hope it might be helpful! Or that it will spur other ideas from more folks too.

                AMDG,
                Sarah
                2019-2020 - 9th Year with MP
                DD, 18, Homeschool grad; Art major/philosophy minor
                DS, 16
                DD, 14
                DD, 12
                DD, 10
                DD, 7.5
                DD, 5.5
                +DS+
                DS, 18 months

                Comment


                  #9
                  3/4 ramped things up a bit too much for my oldest. My middle daughter started later but is now catching up by leaps and bounds. I'm still planning, but I'm going to have my kiddos join together a bit more in the autumn because with them I have found the competition to be beneficial for them.
                  Margaret of Georgia, in west TN – Enginerd’s wife and Mama

                  2019-2020 · 8th MP Year, 9th Homeschooling
                  Trekking along at a student self-pace...
                  DD Summer 2009 · 5th
                  DD Summer 2011 · SC4
                  DS Summer 2014 · JrK/K
                  DD Summer 2017 · Pre
                  DS …EDD 11/2019

                  Memoria Scholé Academy
                  Blog: Creative Madness Mama
                  CherryBlossomMJ

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by KF2000 View Post
                    Meadowlark,
                    Thank you for the additional information. It does really help to get a picture of your situation to flesh things out a bit more. It sounds like you have been having a great year of school, that your kids are all doing well across the board, and that they are all really, really well-placed right now. So, I guess I just have one more question for you: why do you need to rock the boat by changing them? You have them all in separate grades, they all sound well-suited for where they are, they are all growing in skills well, you don't seem to have any real trouble spots, and you are making it work to have three kids in school. That (to me) sounds ideal, and my advice to you would be to try to continue the pattern you have started by simply "doing the next thing" for each child.

                    If the idea of having three "cores" feels intimidating, then start with a blank sheet of paper. Start with your oldest child. Write down each subject area and what he is doing now. What is his next logical thing to do next in each area? Then repeat of the two girls. THESE LISTS should be your "core" for each child.

                    THEN, see what you can add in, comfortably, on top of these lists. Maybe it is something for each child; maybe it is an enrichment program that you do together; maybe it is a set of read aloud books; maybe it is music enrichment; or (gasp) maybe it is NOTHING. Maybe what is essential for each child is the max you can comfortably do. Or it is enough to get you started, and then when November rolls around (when MP usually does free shipping again!) decide then that there is something you guys could manage to do altogether because everyone is chugging along really well.

                    Before you responded, and I tried to think of ideas for you...I was struggling too. But after reading your post, this is immediately what sprang to mind. So I hope it might be helpful! Or that it will spur other ideas from more folks too.

                    AMDG,
                    Sarah
                    Great question. I would say that yes, the kids are having a smooth year. I am a little worried about ME though-trying to teach so many different subjects to 3 different kids (plus a toddler and 2 older kids in school). It just feels like it takes forever to just get the latin, spelling, reading and math done-usually we don't finish until lunch and honestly, my voice is raspy because I've been switching between 3 kids for 3 hours or so. Then it's enrichment, read alouds, cursive/copywork and anything else after lunch. Our days are full. Then when I think about adding in Christian Studies, Greek Myths, 50 states, science (whatever we choose in the future), plus adding in Intro to Comp for my 3rd grader, then I get overwhelmed thinking that we can barely get through everything now, let alone adding these things in. And then the following year it would just be two more starting Latin, and now teaching 2nd, 3M again and then 4M too. I know, take one year at a time. But this really seems like something I could seriously mess up now by making the wrong decision.

                    Question-what would a typical day with Greek Myths be like? Maybe I'm making more out of it than I should. How about Christian Studies? We're actually reading through the 2nd grade bible part this year (so New testament) so what should I do next year? Start the Christian Studies with everyone (year 1) and just require my oldest to write? Or, go back and do the K stories with everybody. I do feel like my older guy would benefit from something a little more meaty.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I've thought about this all day. Here's my opinion, coming from a mama doing K, 2, and 3rd this year. I'm going to agree with Sarah, mostly.

                      You have himmed and hawed, and basically agonized over this decision for weeks now. You have asked several times how to combine your kids. This is a sign. Your heart cannot be a rest with this decision because your heart knows its not the best decision. You are trying to make the best decision for you, not necessarily for your kids. You're afraid that you're going to fail. You're not really all that worried about whether your kids will fail. They are doing just fine, even excelling, in their current cores. I would leave that be. Here's the thing. You're doing just fine too. You have made no mention that you're drowning or struggling. It's just you're afraid that you will start to struggle. Have faith mama!

                      This is where I agree with Sarah. Stick to the basics in their current cores and branch out from there.

                      The K-2 set is very difficult to combine with grades 3 and above. So, don't do it. Easy. Let that third grader do third grade. I would opt for 3M, this is the standard core for homeschoolers. You would have to seek out the 3 Accelerated core on the web. This child needs to complete the basics: math, reading, writing, spelling, and grammer. I'm going to say that Latin, science, States and Capitals, and Christian Studies is optional. Don't throw rotten apples yet...

                      The younger set has very similar requirements: math, reading/phonics, writing, and penmanship for the first grader to learn cursive. Optional: Latin, science, and American History.

                      I'm going to guess that that the current second grader is working through Prima and will be ready for Latina Christiana in the fall. If this is the case, rock-on and let that child move on. Add Latin to that child's required courses.

                      That leaves the younger two. They need to do their core subjects. You could hold off on Latin for the second-grader until both kids are 3rd and 2nd and then group them together in Prima. You could outright skip Patterns of Nature and Stories for Little Americans in grade 2. Just select one enrichment set from K-2 and do it for both of them. Or, totally skip it. No one is going to be delayed for not having you read a story about seeds or George Washington. Seriously.

                      I think a lot of homeschoolers hear the siren-song of combining kids for as much as they possibly can. The guise is that it will make your life easier. And quicker. Classical education isn't designed for combining so well in these early grades. K-2 need to be K-2. Period. Memoria Press does a wonderful job of focusing on the basics for these lower levels. There's not much 'fluff" left to combine. The only ones I can think of are Christian Studies and Enrichment. So, if you want to include these for your children, choose a level and teach it to both. The third grader is at a different level. You can omit some things and your child will still have a wonderfully solid education. If you want to delay a subject like Christian Studies or States and Capitals until the 2nd grader is in third (you'll have a 4th and 3rd grader). Fine. You could honestly omit Mammals and just have that child participate in enrichment if you choose to do that.

                      And time; another siren-song to homeschoolers. We need to ask ourselves if school should be over by lunch. Lots of blogs tell us so. Truthfully, our kids are getting older, with more demanding academics. We're teaching more kids. Is it reasonable to expect to give a solid education to three children, while wrangling two smaller ones, to be over before lunch? I don't think so. If we broke that out and figured you started school at 9 and finished by 12...is it reasonable to expect to fully teach a second grader a full day's worth of school in one hour?

                      We hear that combining kids for as much as we possibly can should be something to strive for. I disagree. Think of how much energy you have used trying to figure out how to combine your kids. Instead, let them each have a guide. Write their name on the cover. Do as much of that guide for each child as possible. I have found that combining kids causes more headaches than its worth. One kid is sick, you hold the other back for the day too. One kid is struggling to grasp a concept, you hold the other kid back until you can move forward as a group...or you drag the slow one along. Its not ideal for anyone. Instead, just as Sarah recommended. Make a list of requirements for each child. Start with that. Are you coasting? Are you treading water? Are you drowning? Reassess in November. Add or delete subjects as necessary.
                      Married to DH for 14 years. Living the rural life in the Colorado mountains

                      DS11- Simply Classical 5/6
                      DD9- Simply Classical 5/6 (neurotypical, but schooling with big brother to save mom's sanity)
                      DD 6- Classic Core First Grade

                      We've completed:
                      Classic Core Jr. kindergarten, kindergarten, first grade, and second grade.
                      Simply Classical levels B, C, 1, 2, 3, and 4.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Colomama View Post
                        I've thought about this all day. Here's my opinion, coming from a mama doing K, 2, and 3rd this year. I'm going to agree with Sarah, mostly.

                        You have himmed and hawed, and basically agonized over this decision for weeks now. You have asked several times how to combine your kids. This is a sign. Your heart cannot be a rest with this decision because your heart knows its not the best decision. You are trying to make the best decision for you, not necessarily for your kids. You're afraid that you're going to fail. You're not really all that worried about whether your kids will fail. They are doing just fine, even excelling, in their current cores. I would leave that be. Here's the thing. You're doing just fine too. You have made no mention that you're drowning or struggling. It's just you're afraid that you will start to struggle. Have faith mama!

                        This is where I agree with Sarah. Stick to the basics in their current cores and branch out from there.

                        The K-2 set is very difficult to combine with grades 3 and above. So, don't do it. Easy. Let that third grader do third grade. I would opt for 3M, this is the standard core for homeschoolers. You would have to seek out the 3 Accelerated core on the web. This child needs to complete the basics: math, reading, writing, spelling, and grammer. I'm going to say that Latin, science, States and Capitals, and Christian Studies is optional. Don't throw rotten apples yet...

                        The younger set has very similar requirements: math, reading/phonics, writing, and penmanship for the first grader to learn cursive. Optional: Latin, science, and American History.

                        I'm going to guess that that the current second grader is working through Prima and will be ready for Latina Christiana in the fall. If this is the case, rock-on and let that child move on. Add Latin to that child's required courses.

                        That leaves the younger two. They need to do their core subjects. You could hold off on Latin for the second-grader until both kids are 3rd and 2nd and then group them together in Prima. You could outright skip Patterns of Nature and Stories for Little Americans in grade 2. Just select one enrichment set from K-2 and do it for both of them. Or, totally skip it. No one is going to be delayed for not having you read a story about seeds or George Washington. Seriously.

                        I think a lot of homeschoolers hear the siren-song of combining kids for as much as they possibly can. The guise is that it will make your life easier. And quicker. Classical education isn't designed for combining so well in these early grades. K-2 need to be K-2. Period. Memoria Press does a wonderful job of focusing on the basics for these lower levels. There's not much 'fluff" left to combine. The only ones I can think of are Christian Studies and Enrichment. So, if you want to include these for your children, choose a level and teach it to both. The third grader is at a different level. You can omit some things and your child will still have a wonderfully solid education. If you want to delay a subject like Christian Studies or States and Capitals until the 2nd grader is in third (you'll have a 4th and 3rd grader). Fine. You could honestly omit Mammals and just have that child participate in enrichment if you choose to do that.

                        And time; another siren-song to homeschoolers. We need to ask ourselves if school should be over by lunch. Lots of blogs tell us so. Truthfully, our kids are getting older, with more demanding academics. We're teaching more kids. Is it reasonable to expect to give a solid education to three children, while wrangling two smaller ones, to be over before lunch? I don't think so. If we broke that out and figured you started school at 9 and finished by 12...is it reasonable to expect to fully teach a second grader a full day's worth of school in one hour?

                        We hear that combining kids for as much as we possibly can should be something to strive for. I disagree. Think of how much energy you have used trying to figure out how to combine your kids. Instead, let them each have a guide. Write their name on the cover. Do as much of that guide for each child as possible. I have found that combining kids causes more headaches than its worth. One kid is sick, you hold the other back for the day too. One kid is struggling to grasp a concept, you hold the other kid back until you can move forward as a group...or you drag the slow one along. Its not ideal for anyone. Instead, just as Sarah recommended. Make a list of requirements for each child. Start with that. Are you coasting? Are you treading water? Are you drowning? Reassess in November. Add or delete subjects as necessary.
                        SOLID GOLD, as always. <3

                        Plans for 2019-20

                        DD1 - 24 - College Grad and rocking her own bakery business
                        DD2 - 13 - 8A Louisville HLS Cottage School and MPOA
                        DS3 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                        DS4 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                        DD5 - 7 - MP2, Louisville HLS Cottage School
                        DS6 - 5 - MP K

                        [url]www.thekennedyadventures.com/all-about-our-memoria-press-homeschool[/url]

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by Colomama View Post
                          I think a lot of homeschoolers hear the siren-song of combining kids for as much as they possibly can. The guise is that it will make your life easier. And quicker.

                          ...

                          And time; another siren-song to homeschoolers. We need to ask ourselves if school should be over by lunch. Lots of blogs tell us so. Truthfully, our kids are getting older, with more demanding academics. We're teaching more kids. Is it reasonable to expect to give a solid education to three children, while wrangling two smaller ones, to be over before lunch? I don't think so. If we broke that out and figured you started school at 9 and finished by 12...is it reasonable to expect to fully teach a second grader a full day's worth of school in one hour?

                          You've expressed similar sentiments on here before. I just thought I'd tell you just how helpful I found this advice! We now combine almost nothing, and things are so much smoother!
                          Amanda
                          Mama to three crazy boys - 6A, 5A, 1

                          "Non nisi te, Domine. Non nisi te" - St. Thomas Aquinas

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                            #14
                            Originally posted by Meadowlark View Post

                            Great question. I would say that yes, the kids are having a smooth year. I am a little worried about ME though-trying to teach so many different subjects to 3 different kids (plus a toddler and 2 older kids in school). It just feels like it takes forever to just get the latin, spelling, reading and math done-usually we don't finish until lunch and honestly, my voice is raspy because I've been switching between 3 kids for 3 hours or so. Then it's enrichment, read alouds, cursive/copywork and anything else after lunch. Our days are full. Then when I think about adding in Christian Studies, Greek Myths, 50 states, science (whatever we choose in the future), plus adding in Intro to Comp for my 3rd grader, then I get overwhelmed thinking that we can barely get through everything now, let alone adding these things in. And then the following year it would just be two more starting Latin, and now teaching 2nd, 3M again and then 4M too. I know, take one year at a time. But this really seems like something I could seriously mess up now by making the wrong decision.

                            Question-what would a typical day with Greek Myths be like? Maybe I'm making more out of it than I should. How about Christian Studies? We're actually reading through the 2nd grade bible part this year (so New testament) so what should I do next year? Start the Christian Studies with everyone (year 1) and just require my oldest to write? Or, go back and do the K stories with everybody. I do feel like my older guy would benefit from something a little more meaty.
                            Hi Meadowlark,

                            I don't think you'll seriously mess things up by making a wrong decision. You could consider starting next year just doing Latin, Math, Grammar/Spelling/Copybook, and Literature for each child and Christian Studies 1 as a family. Nothing else. You are doing that this year, and if that's all you have time for next year, so be it. That will be a great education. Then, if that is going well, slowly plan/hope to add in the 3rd grade Myths, States & Capitals, and Science (offer to let younger sibs listen in but don't combine or require it) and whatever Primary Art & Music Enrichment you want to (I do it as a whole family at lunch once a week). I wouldn't worry about the science/history primary enrichment. Your younger kids will be listening in on your 3rd grader's work sometimes, or you may get to the primary enrichment someday with your toddler and they will hear it then. :-) If for some reason it doesn't work out, the next year have your 4th and 3rd grader do 4NU and 3A together.

                            But if it does work, then the following year keep the same plan, but have your oldest start doing some or most of the Classical/Modern/Science independently and see how that goes. I think you'll have more time by that point once you have a 4th, 3rd, and 2nd grader instead of K, 1st, and 2nd.

                            You should be able to see a typical day of Greek Myths in the lesson plan samples online. It would take us about an hour to read the story, go over vocabulary, and write answers to all the questions. That was the same for Christian Studies 1 and Mammals. When I did third grade with my daughter, if we did not have that kind of time we skimped on some part of the student guide, but we always read the book slowly and well and the material has stuck with her.

                            Hope that helps!


                            Catherine

                            2019-20
                            DS16, 10th
                            DS13, 7th
                            DS11, 6th
                            DD11, 6th
                            DS7, 1st
                            DD4, JrK
                            DS 17 mos

                            Homeschooling 4 with MP
                            2 in classical school

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                              #15
                              Have to totally agree with Colomama...so many great points that hit home with me (love that you called them all “siren songs” - so perfect) but also the thing about timing. That was something that stuck out to me, too, from your response, Meadowlark, is that as time goes by, your expectation of how much time this takes will have to gradually grow - and there’s nothing wrong with that. Others, in other places, have different ideas about this, but then, they also have different ideas about Latin (!!) and other things we emphasize (memorization!! Drill!! Mastery!!!) so why should this be any different?

                              My third graders usually work for the morning time on things they can do themselves - which usually amounts to about 2 hours - before taking a break to wait for me. This is while I am workin with the two younger siblings. By the time the younger two are done, I usually need lunch (and a bit more coffee) to then head into one-on-one time with the third grader. And then I have to keep going after that one! This is why I honestly don’t look at times anymore at all. How lon things take is how long they take. Try not to sweat it. Strive for making each day as great as possible, but realize the definition of great changes with each passing day!

                              AMDG,
                              Sarah
                              2019-2020 - 9th Year with MP
                              DD, 18, Homeschool grad; Art major/philosophy minor
                              DS, 16
                              DD, 14
                              DD, 12
                              DD, 10
                              DD, 7.5
                              DD, 5.5
                              +DS+
                              DS, 18 months

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