Encouragement - When not fitting it all in

Art, Foreign Language, Music, Nature Walks, as well as general ideas and encouragement
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Joined: Sat Dec 30, 2006 3:49 pm

Encouragement - When not fitting it all in

Unread post by Homeschooling6 »

I'm feeling overwhelmed
jkluv7 wrote:We started MFW ECC this year and really like it, but I have an 8mos. old whose schedule seems to change everyday. This has caused some craziness in our MFW schedule.

We haven't been able to do art or science this year and I feel so bad for my kids. They like what we've been able to do but I feel like such a failure at not being able to get it all in. I've read some of the ECC posts and moms talking about how much fun they had doing certain projects and I'm just lucky to get the three "R's" done.

Anybody out there feeling the same? Any ideas to get a better handle on things or do we just go with the flow?

Kim, mom to 5
4th gr, 2nd gr, pre-k, 3yr and 8mos.
Kim, I am not doing ECC but have felt that way many times. For the past 4yrs (all of our homeschooling years) I have not had any energy to do more then the reading. My body was tired from having babies =)

This is the first year that we are actually doing all the science stuff and any crafts. I always felt bad because I wasn't and still am not a crafty person. I don't like the mess that crafts bring. But this year I am making an extra effort to add them in and believe me it has not been easy. But having more energy has helped.

We haven't done any art and I do feel terrible about it. I have an art course up on the shelf that I have not started. It's been sitting there for almost 3yrs now.

As long as your children are getting the 3R's everything else IMO is gravy (extra)

Can your 4th grader help with some of the science? Maybe you can have a Science day or Art day when your husband is home to take care of the little one or you can do it at night. Sometimes I am schooling my K & 1st graders in the evening when dh is home.

Sorry I am not any help, but I do want you to know that you're not alone.
Linda Mom to
Joshua 5/98, Annette 9/99, Caleb 9/00, Brent 10/01, Ethan 1/03, Lance 8/04
Currently using texbooks.

Our Blog http://training6hearts4him.blogspot.com

Unread post by cbollin »

I only have 3 children and certainly feel that way from time to time. Some weeks in ECC, I didn’t get 3R’s done, but instead did the fun stuff only. And I still don’t think I did an excellent job with ECC. Psst… I feel that way sometimes this year too. I killed our herb garden. But on the other hand, the bean in the plastic bag survived the transfer to the window sill.

It’s hard juggling the infants and schooling. You’re right…. It changes so quickly and what works this week, forget it next week. I remember some weeks it was put the infant in a swing, other times in a sling carrier, other times in the high chair with an ice cube.

The nice thing is we are not in a competition with each other to be the ultimate mfw user or anything else in life. {hug}

Hang in there! Take it a day at a time. Remember, you’ll re-do ECC in 5 years when everyone is older.

Posts: 46
Joined: Sat Jan 08, 2005 7:57 pm

Unread post by mom2boys »

Hi Kim,

I have a 5th grader, 2nd grader and 1 year old. We just finished ECC in January and loved it also. We took 1 1/2 years to finish because of the baby and there were times I did not feel like we did the countries justice. But God is good and my older boys have learned to care for and love their baby brother as well as knowing a lot more geography than they did a year and a half ago!!

We are also constantly adjusting our schedule around the baby, but it has taught us all to be more flexible. You probably already do this, but assigning one of the older boys to have play time with the baby really helps me when I need one-on-one time with the other son.

When things are rough, it really helps me to remember this is just for a season. I look at my 10 year old and try remember how fast he grew from 1 to 10 and try to enjoy the baby time - interruptions and all! I realize you have two more youngers in the mix and pray that God blesses you with HIS strength and energy. Just wanted to let you know you are not alone in this struggle.

Posts: 109
Joined: Sat Sep 11, 2004 9:25 pm

Unread post by MJP »

I school year-round partially due to the "interruptions" little ones can cause. Fortunately, today we only had spilt juice and a drawn-on foot.

It is OK if you do not get everything done. I have found that if I pray then everything does get done--just not instantaneously as I would like. Praying with my husband seems to double the effectiveness (Well, that would make sense--there are two of us asking.)

I have had better success with a feed, keep awake, put self to sleep (repeat) baby schedule than others I have tried. A flow-chart type schedule also works better for us now than an actual time chart. I just have a list of what I would like to get done in order of importance and move down it as I have time--obviously halting or slightly altering when the baby needs to be fed, the doorbell rings, my husband requests my assistance, etc.

My new baby cried a lot for six weeks (that was new to me); therefore, we will take off July for summer break instead of June as in the past. I just can't allow stuff like that to bother me anymore (in a "past" life anything off-schedule bothered me). From your post you are getting the basics done and your children are enjoying it. That is success already!

We also have items on our shelf that haven't gotten done. They will be accomplished when God supplies the time. And if he doesn't--I didn't need to do them.
Wife of 1 for 18 yrs. Mom of 7--ages 1-15--1st, 2nd, 5th, 8th and 9th grades & (one on the way)
Psalm 16:8
Currently using--1850 to Modern Times
Previously--MFW K , 1st, CtoG, RTR, Exp. to 1850
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Joined: Sat Mar 25, 2006 10:36 pm

Unread post by mout »

Don't feel bad, I think more of us than you think don't get all that done all the time!

Science is hit or miss, we have done some, missed some. My son loves to go thru the science books and asks to do experiments so alot of times
if we do one, we do five! But then we may not for a while.

Art has been where I feel like I have fallen short, but I plan to get into it in the summer - the Adventures art. We do occasionally get the Draw Write Now books and Steve Barr drawing books - my children get into them on their own quite a bit. They are at our library here.

So hang in there, I remember how crazy our days were with a baby - and we weren't homeschooling! I know we want to make sure we don't "slack" and that we are conscientious about educating our kids, but I have also learned that they learn from so many different things. So, relax, they are learning, look for ways for them to learn in addition to what you can do with them.

K. Lynn
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Joined: Thu Dec 21, 2006 4:19 am

Thank you

Unread post by jkluv7 »

Thank you ladies for your replies. It helps to know I'm not alone. Some of your replies made me laugh thinking "been there, done that". Laughter always helps. Too bad we all can't get together and pat each other on the back and give encouraging words like you all have done for me today. Thanks again.

Julie in MN
Posts: 2909
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: I'm feeling overwhelmed with MFW

Unread post by Julie in MN »

Just wanted you to know that there are other posts in the archives that might bring you comfort (besides the intimidating ones you've read!). For example:

Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002+)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs
Posts: 159
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2005 9:56 am

Unread post by tiffany »

If you look at my signature, you can see I've been in the same boat as you and will be again soon. I've been using MFW for 1 1/2 years now, before that we pieced together our own program (or tried to anyway).

Even though we are sometimes on a wild rollercoaster ride with non-school stuff, I much prefer the structure that MFW provides over what we used to do. I feel I get more accomplished and have a better handle on my objectives and goals.

But, lest you think we are perfect, let me share... I have just gotten over a 3 month combo of morning sickness and every virus that came my way. We are just now getting back on track. During that time, the first thing to go was Kindergarten, then science, then language arts. I'm so thankful we got through the feasts in CTG before I fell apart.

Now Kindergarten is back on the table, and he's doing better than ever. Seems he had some learning development take place in his brain during our time off.

For science, I've enlisted Dad's help on Wednesday to do two science projects. I have us moving on through the book at a pace that will get us to the end 2 weeks before the baby comes. Sure, we won't get to do all the experiments, but the kids will get 4 experiments from every chapter. Good enough for me!

Language Arts is back too. I must admit my least favorite subject, but we're doing it. Then, there is our time line. It will be review in a week or two. Also, there is one project I want to go back and do. I have all my materials, so we are halfway there.

Anyway, just wanted to give you some idea of the ebb and flow at our house. I know I sound so rational, but I definitely have those days (and weeks) of frustration and even feelings of failure. I certainly don't have it all together, but there are opportunities to catch up. Plus your kids are going to be fine if you miss some things here and there. There will be opportunities to cover some of these things again as they get older.

I'm glad our baby will be born in May. That will give me at least 3 solid months before we start up again. I'm sure it will be a challenge. We weren't doing quite as much last time we had a baby in the house.
Wife to Tim ('88)
Mother to Sophie 16, Jonathan 14, Joey 12, Noah 10, Matthew 8, Eli 4
Have completed MFWK, MFW 1st grade, ECC, CTG, RTR, Exp.-1850,1850-Mod., HS Ancients, HS World
Fall of '11 ECC,HS Ancients, HS U.S. History to 1877
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Unread post by Mama2boys »

Posted: Sun Nov 18, 2007 3:07 pm

Embrace this season, don't endure it! If you look hard enough you will see God at work and that there is a perfect purpose even in this tough season. (warm understanding smile)

We can make our own plans but the Lord determines our steps! Proverbs 16:9

There is no one like the God of Israel, He rides across the Heavens to help you. Across the skies in majestic Splendor! Duet 33:26

The Lord longs to be gracious! He rises to show you compassion. Isaiah 30:18

For I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and future. Jeremiah 29:11

Cyndi (AZ)
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 4:22 pm

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

Posted: Sun Nov 18, 2007 3:31 pm

You have YEARS ahead of you to school your precious children, don't let yourself get too wrapped up in these few months of slow progress. I can guarantee that your children are still learning plenty from you in this season, even if you're not "hitting the books" as much. Take this time to rest and take care of yourself -- recharge. A year from now, the baby will be on a nap schedule and you'll be on a school schedule, and what will count is the lessons you've learned from going through this.

More {{{HUGS}}}

Newbie needing help and encouragement

Unread post by cbollin »

Momto3princesses wrote:Hi there everyone. This is my first time posting so I hope I get it right. I am doing ecc with my 5th grader. This is our first year homeschooling. I also have an 18mo dd and a 3 yr old dd and I work part time outside of the house. It's been a challenging 6 months to say the least.

First I want to know if it is ok that I rely heavily on my 5th grade working independently most of the time. I put together a syllabus for her and she follows it and asks me if she has any questions. She works well on her own, but I don't like her doing the geography portion alone because I can't tell if she is really getting anything. She also doesn't like notebooking. The science experiments haven't happened much due to lack of time and patience. So, I guess I'm wondering if I should even be homeschooling because if feels like I'm doing more harm than good right now.

Sorry to sound so discouraged, but I could use some direction and encouragement. Has anyone else experienced these things? Also, whenever anyone asks her what she is learning she can't seem to tell them anything! I get so embarrassed because most of our friends do not homeschool and think I'm a little bit crazy for trying.

Thanks so much for letting me get this off my chest and for any encouragement you can offer.
Posted: Sat Dec 29, 2007 9:22 pm

Many kids can’t really say what they are learning without some kind of more specific question such as “what did you do in math today?” Most likely if she were still in a group school, she still wouldn’t be able to answer the question easily so I don’t think it has much to with homeschooling. It’s just a kid thing. And girls in 5th/6th grade like to start to groan about anything, don’t they? If it isn’t notebooking, it’s math or having to brush their hair.

Many things can be done more independently at this age by some kids. But some of the trick is to get those few minutes where you can do some of the geography and science together. I have done a lot of school at the kitchen table. I had to hold the toddler in a cloth carrier while letting the other kids read the science and clean up after themselves. I had days where the toddler was in the high chair eating while we did other school. And all sorts of crazy things here and there. I just want you to know you are not alone.

Couple of fun resources:
Todd Wilson’s Homeschooling Cartoon books.

And consider getting MFW’s convention workshop recording about Occupying Toddlers while Teaching Older Children. You see, at one point David Hazell was the homeschooling dad while Marie worked full time. He was at home with 4 kids 2nd grade all the way down to a nursing infant. David shares many ideas of how he lived through *those* days.

Julie in MN
Posts: 2909
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Unread post by Julie in MN »

Posted: Sat Dec 29, 2007 10:17 pm

We all have had our ups & downs, and posting here for support is a treasure that has helped many of us through. Keep reaching out. Some random thoughts when I think back to the difficult times of transitioning to homeschool, not having enough time to homeschool ideally, etc.:

1. Your daughter is working independently & she deserves praise! She probably knows how busy you are, and she's taking up the slack on her own. Wow!

2. Doing the three Rs is doing as much as most public schools can accomplish in a day -- or even more. The other stuff is wonderful but it doesn't always happen. I remember my oldest son's 6th grade teacher saying something to the effect of, "Usually I like to do experiments & such with the kids, but this year, well, we have Ryan in the class..." (Hi to my son's dear friend, Ryan :o)

3. If you feel called to provide more science, then the experiments are very easy & teach more than you think. Your daughter could even set them up. Also, the nature walks can be a way for the whole family to get out of the house. But if not, it'll be okay.

4. Do you have time to do the geography game? Or can dad or auntie or friends play it with her? It really is a good way to learn.

5. I feel homeschooling on their own is not my number one choice for a gradeschooler, but I also know that it has been done and can be done and that she can still benefit from her homeschool experience. Lots of families use curriculums like Robinson and ABeka, and their kids turn out wonderfully.

6. Kids understand family needs. It's not like you're choosing to do your nails instead of teach! Last year my husband was in the hospital a lot and my daughter had an infant in the home, so my son was an independent 5th grader a lot. Not ideal, but he understood the reasons, & he was fine. 14 years earlier, when my oldest son was in public school, my husband had cancer for the first time and our son really felt left out of the whole family situation. How much better to keep connected to the family and see how a parent and a spouse make life work even in a challenge -- something kids of old got as a matter of course but today's isolated generations may miss altogether.

7. Notebooking is a new way for kids to learn who are just coming out of the public schools. I would try to do it together at first. If you find any time during the day to do this with her, you can notebook about any subject and get started. My son writes a page about each field trip (even family events). If you don't get started on this this year, you can start next.

8. When your dd can't remember what she learned (as is typical at certain ages), the notebook can help "show" others what you're doing. If she isn't creating a formal notebook, she can at least slip pages of her work into a notebook. It's helpful in showing your own dd what she is doing, showing others what you have done, and it will continue to be helpful as a review in the future.

9. When I started homeschooling, I spent time evaluating my son in every area, and then setting goals for him. I used Evaluating For Excellence, but you could just use notebook paper. I observed him in all subjects. I talked to him about what he remembered doing, what books he liked, and so on. It took a lot of prompting and often I didn't find out things until they came up unexpectedly -- I'd say something like, "Well, how did you do this when you were in public school?" and he'd say something that gave me insight, such as, "I'd just write down whatever so I could be done & go play..." or, "I didn't want to be the last one done so I hurried."

Anyways, at the end of the year, I could tell myself that we had made progress in some important areas, and we needed to continue working on others. I remember one of my goals was simply to become truly familiar with the real Bible -- what a blessing to change that in his life!

10. I think some skills are very important and are often overlooked. Things like following a schedule, helping with a baby, reading to a preschooler or "teaching" something simple, even assisting you in preparing a meal -- these are all definitely part of the school day today. Schools spend time setting classroom rules and enforcing them, they give credit for helping a teacher or a younger student, and they offer courses called home ec and child development. You have quite the advanced curriculum, I'd say!

Well, I've rambled but I hope something is encouraging that you are the best teacher for your dd.
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Unread post by kellybell »

Posted: Sun Dec 30, 2007 12:26 am

Remember that God is not surprised by the situation you find yourself in and while He is asking for your dedication, he isn't asking for perfection. Do a good job, and then relax knowing you've done a good job.

When I did ECC for my then 2nd and 4th graders (I'll repeat it in a few years for the other two), I had two very active little kids. Yes, there were days we didn't get everything done (more of those days than the days we DID get everything done, come to think about it). You said you were concentrating on your 3Rs. If that's going well, why not take a few days OFF of the 3Rs and have an "art day" or a "geography day" or whatever and just spend the morning catching up on things that fell behind. That's fine to do.
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Location: Minnesota

Unread post by claraskids »

Posted: Sun Dec 30, 2007 5:44 pm

You may be surprised at how much your daughter is learning that isn't planned. This is our first year with MFW and its been very hectic: working at home, two preschool boys, I spend a month in the hospital, etc. However, my dd's favorite thing right now is "teaching" the little ones. I'll be cooking lunch, and she'll have all the daycare kids around her listening to a story - check off reading for the day!

At nap time, she'll have the 4-5 year olds sitting at the computer while she looks up sharks on the internet and explains to them why they are such great hunters - there's science for the day!

When she helps prepare meals, there is usually math in some form (fractions, addition/multiplication, temps). Look for the natural learning opportunities and you may be surprised how much she's doing.

I also love the idea of taking a day just for geography or science. We've done that also, and it allows you to get really in depth with a subject.
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Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2007 4:55 pm

Unread post by mgardenh »

Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2007 3:42 pm

Agreeing with the others. You can do it! I homeschool work a part time job and have a homebusiness with two special needs children. God gives you what you need to handle your situation.

Eventually you will see what your dd is learning. Particullarly pay attention when she is playing by herself or doing some activity. You will be surprised at what she knows even though she does not tell anyone.

For notebooking try vidoe taping (have her act out or talk about what you've read) for a change (if you have a video recorder). Label and store in case you ever want to show it to someon for fun or because you need to.

It is not easy but remember God is blessing you even if you do not feel blessed.
Julie in MN
Posts: 2909
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by Julie in MN »

TammyB wrote:I'm weighing a couple of options on how to wrap up our school year and would appreciate some feedback. :)

When our school year ends, we will have completed about 24 weeks of ECC. I rearranged the order of the continents, so we will have completed Europe, Asia, and North America. My plan is to take most of June off (Mom needs a break.), leisurely study Australia in July, and South America in August. That leaves Africa for September. I am seriously thinking about popping in a dvd for Antarctica and spending only a few days comparing it with the Arctic.

That would put us starting Creation to the Greeks in October, two months later than I wanted. Surely that is not the end of the world? Surely over the next FOUR years I will be able to make up that time so that oldest still gets to repeat ECC in eighth?

Oldest is going to have to work on math all summer, so going full steam with ECC through the entire summer is just not an option. We all need a break. We've worked hard this year. :) There are some nature study things I want to do this summer anyway.

ECC seems so foundational that I just hate to not finish it. Thoughts? This shouldn't be stressing me, but it is. Thanks!
It will be fine, whatever you decide.

My particular method is to do the whole program that I have paid for and that I like. I may skip things here & there along the way, but I don't force it. That has resulted in our starting 1850MOD in February this year. Not my favorite idea, but not a big problem either.

I especially wouldn't fret about kids in the elementary grades. They're probably doing a grade's worth of the basics, and history etc. are just frosting on the cake.

Reid won't get to do all of ECC in 8th grade, but he'll get to do some of it. As we go thru our final year in the cycle, I have an eye to what he is strong in and what he is weaker in, as far as geography goes. When we get to ECC again, I plan to do my usual -- start at the beginning and skip as I see something he has already mastered, and end his 8th grade year when the public schoolers end their year.

I have seen so many unexpected connections between what we are learning on a particular day and our life events that I cannot but help think that God is caring even for the details.
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002+)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs
Julie in MN
Posts: 2909
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by Julie in MN »

TammyB wrote:I know exactly what you mean by connections. :) I've had the same experience many times this year in ECC, and it is always so encouraging. (I tend to be hard on myself.)

Would you agree that the information in ECC is foundational and that it shouldn't be skipped? If so, don't I need to complete it before moving on?
ECC is definitely the foundation of MFW, in my view. I can't quite picture how you are balancing the whole Bible portion, since you've mixed the continents up. I wouldn't want to skimp on that most of all -- I'd want to read all of Matthew and all of the Hero's Tales/character traits and all of the Window on the World portion. I guess that would be hardest for *me* to skip, but I don't know how your doing it now, so I can't tell if you could squeeze there or not?!

As far as the geography portion, however, I have this feeling that tons of families never get thru Australia, just from different things that have come up. South America usually is central to ECC in terms of Nate Saint and getting excited about missions. Kis also love learning about the rainforest, and I found it quite interesting to look at the Portugal/Spain balance there. But I think you could shorten it a bit, depending on whether you can finish Nate more quickly.

Africa is hard, and you may benefit from spending the full time on learning those countries? Or just focus on Kenya & learn a few others solidly, and leave learning the rest by playing the game in future years. You will learn plenty about Egypt in CTG.

You should probably ask another mom to contrast with my method of just starting the year at an odd time rather than reinventing the wheel :)
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002+)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs
Posts: 87
Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2006 10:27 pm

Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by TammyB »

For Bible we are doing all of Hero Tales, Window on the World, the John 3:16 sheets, and reading the Egermeiers Story Bible. We have read some of Matthew and have memorized some of the verses. I really, really struggled with the Matthew study. My kids were eight and six when we started, and they were constantly begging to read the Egermeiers, so in the end, I prayerfully chose to concentrate on that. (I couldn't do it all.) I think it was the right decision too, as I have seen so many connections between what we have read in it to what we have studied in ECC. I've tried to keep in mind the goal of Bible in ECC, and I think I have been pretty successful with that.

Perhaps I should spend July doing South America (instead of Australia) and August doing Africa.

This is really frustrating me. I hate being behind. I wish I felt like we could just go at a comfortable pace instead of always trying to "keep up." Thanks for talking through this with me, Julie. :) I appreciate your taking your time.

Julie in MN
Posts: 2909
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by Julie in MN »

TammyB wrote:This is really frustrating me. I hate being behind. I wish I felt like we could just go at a comfortable pace instead of always trying to "keep up."
Oh, Tammy, if your kids are still just 8 and 6, you need to stop beating yourself up. It's the "learning to love to learn" phase, not the "cram it in" phase :) They won't remember everything you've taught, I'm sorry to say. But they will remember that the world is interesting and some people are doing great things and God so loved the world. That's all they need at their age.

Just because *I* like to keep going into the next year doesn't mean you need to keep going if it frustrates you. Your kids are fine. Take care of their teacher :)
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002+)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs
Posts: 158
Joined: Mon Oct 23, 2006 5:59 pm

Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by HSmommi2mine »

I would just skip Antarctica all together. I smushed some of the weeks together so we did some countries in one week each. It was just fine and if you did that a couple of times and dropped Antarctica completely (or maybe just watch a movie and be done) then you might make back at least a month.

Wife to my favorite guy
Mom to 3 great kids
Posts: 87
Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2006 10:27 pm

Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by TammyB »

I know you are right, Julie. :) I think I have been beating myself up about something or another since hsing began!

In truth, my oldest should have done Adventures in third instead of in second. The content in Adventures wasn't too hard, but the length of school day was a challenge. He was still working hard to learn to read and write. In retrospect I realize that he is definitely one of those boys who should have been fully six years old before starting kindergarten. I started him at 5.5, and there has consistently been a six month skill gap since that time. (He is just about to finish Singapore 2A instead of 2B. He is still working in level A in Spelling Power--and is not about to finish it, and he is on about lesson 114 of 164 in PLL.) His skills are progressing steadily, and I am very pleased and content with his individual progress (and he is the most loving, wonderful little boy anyone could ever ask for:) ).

What I want is to homeschool him without the pressure of keeping up with a schedule that is a tad bit too long. What I really want is to begin Creation to the Greeks in January to give him a bit more time to grow into it. Why is it that the thought of doing that makes me feel like a failure?

Am I making any sense at all? I'm sharing my heart here, so I hope everyone who reads this will be careful with their words is they choose to reply. :) I'm feeling a bit vulnerable about opening up.

I really appreciate your heart, Julie. Thanks for being a safe person to talk to. :)
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Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by joy2BAMom »

I just had to reply to you. My heart just went out to you. I am sorry that you feel so much pressure in homeschooling this year. I have an 8 year old boy and 6 year old girl and am also doing ECC this year. My 8 year old sounds like yours. Academically slightly behind (even though he doesn't know it) We started him in K at 5 yrs. 2 mths.

We also will not be done in May. We will continue through the summer. I have decided that for my family it is silly to rush through the rest of ECC for so many reasons. Even though, just like you, there is a part of me that wants to have really mastered that TM schedule and done it the way it was written! One reason for not rushing the end of ECC is all that we would miss out on. This is a great curriculum and we are really enjoying our year.

We chose to not memorize all the countries. We talked alot about the different countries and learned the locations of some major ones. But really...in 3rd grade does any ps make 8 year olds memorize locations of countries. I know it is possible but for my son it would have been very frustrating and would have been forgotten fairly quickly. Next time we do ECC he will really be ready for that.

Also, for my family, hs'ing is a financial stretch. For us it was alot of money to buy ECC and to just waste several weeks of it seems silly. I just have to keep reminding myself of the freedom we have in hsing. We are not bound to the ps schedule or system of doing things. It's OK if we dont do school Aug-May only. We can do it how we see fit. We can fit it to our children. That is the point. God gave us the children he did and we are the ones he put over them. It is our duty and our blessing to look at our children individually, see where they are and lead them on from there. God does not make mistakes. He knew what He was doing when he gave you your children. You are doing a wonderful job and I pray that He would give you peace.
Sherrie- wife to Jay for 10 years
Mom to 10 yo boy, 7 yo girl, 3 yo girl, and new baby on the way (due April Fool's Day 2011)
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Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2005 6:07 pm

Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by meagabby »

Tammy, I completely understand about feeling behind and the need to catch up or to get ahead enough to have a break. you see, we've moved alot. I haven't finished a school year on time yet. I strive to and this year I've finally began to simply enjoy the learning. I'm still behind because of our last move. We aren't doing any deluxe activities and still aren't doing all science projects.

It's hard to homeschool and not think of the public school's calendar. I was stressed about our kids never getting a break or myself never really a chance to breath and relax. Please don't be overwhelmed. I share all of this with you in love so that you will know that you are not alone. Just like when we have goals for things outside of school that don't get met, we realign our plan and keep going. And being content with doing what you already have is a good example to your family. Enjoying what you are learning reinforces the reason you are doing it. A smiling mommy makes a good day for a child. KWIM?

This may be of no interest to you, but I think it fits here. Last year, while sharing your same woes of my own to a new friend, she told me they pick a date to be finished with school and that was the end of their year-- even if they had unfinished work left. Her mindset for elementary is that it will be covered again and most ps (if you are already comparing yourself to them) don't get all the work completed either. (I don't know how true this is, though) She was very relaxed about it. She has very 5 bright, well behaved children and it works for her.

I simply felt compelled to comment because I have felt this so much myself. I pray you find a peace about your decision.
Loving learning with MFW!
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Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by hsmomof5 »

Don't worry about being behind after all, you homeschool. You make your own schedule. We had been "behind" our planned schedule with ECC this year also due to family situations arising but I simply condensed the missed weeks into an overview. We did the Geography, Bible and Science reading but may have left out a Hero Tales story and some craft or activity. My gang still learned and we picked things up as schedule within the next weeks. Your children are young and more than likely will return to ECC later down the road so don't beat yourself up about it. Have fun with it! :)
ds 19 (college freshman), ds 12, ds 12, and ds 10 (ECC '08) (CTG '09), dd 3 (Preschool)

Re: I need some thoughts on how and when to finish ECC.

Unread post by cbollin »

Tammy, (((hugs))) to you.

The craziest thought hasn't left my head since reading some of this. I think you're ahead of the game plan instead of behind. You've said your son would have been one who would have done fine with ADV in 3rd grade. Yet, he's in ECC in 3rd. So,you're ahead of the game and still will be if you start CTG in October or January.

Game Plan:
I condensed Antarctica this year. Actually, we did some of the experiments and science in that unit the week that we had 13 inches of snow. Then, we condensed some stuff when it came to the end of the year and just read some books. I didn't even care about the pages in World Geography for that unit. I'm not sure we got math done the last 2 weeks of regular school either. The moment I stopped trying to do it all during those weeks, the kids had fun and enjoyed reading some books.

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