Encouragement/Ideas: Help with attitudes, unmotivated,

Art, Foreign Language, Music, Nature Walks, as well as general ideas and encouragement
Joyhomeschool
Posts: 138
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 9:11 am

Breaking the Pattern

Unread post by Joyhomeschool » Sat Nov 08, 2014 6:51 pm

Dawn did a great post on parenting that strong willed child, I just had to share.
http://www.shiningexamples.blogspot.com ... n.html?m=1
dhudson wrote:Thanks, Vicki!
Vicki
Homeschooling my 7,
2018/2019 1st, EXP, AHL, US 2

areed071509
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2015 2:09 pm

Public School to Homeschool

Unread post by areed071509 » Sun Sep 06, 2015 10:41 pm

My daughter (7) finished K and 1st grade in public school. This year we (she, my husband, and I) decided it'd be best to homeschool. She was so excited all summer telling all her friends that Mommy is going to be her teacher. The excitement wore off after the first week. She has no interest in what we're learning and hardly puts forth any effort when it comes to thinking. I basically spoon feed her through the lessons when it comes to anything that involves reading. I think maybe she doesn't understand what she reads or what is read to her but it seems more to me like she isn't listening. I admit, I'm new to this and maybe the problem is me. I just don't know. I always envisioned making school fun for her but clearly that's not the case. She tells me she has no imagination (what?!) and tells her dad that school is harder this year and there's a lot of work. 2 weeks down and we're both frustrated. How do I fix this?

Julie in MN
Posts: 2925
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Public School to Homeschool

Unread post by Julie in MN » Sun Sep 06, 2015 11:56 pm

areed071509 wrote:My daughter (7) finished K and 1st grade in public school. This year we decided it'd be best to homeschool. She was so excited all summer. The excitement wore off after the first week.

She has no interest in what we're learning and hardly puts forth any effort when it comes to thinking. I basically spoon feed her through the lessons when it comes to anything that involves reading. Maybe she doesn't understand what she reads or what is read to her but it seems more to me like she isn't listening. I admit, I'm new to this and maybe the problem is me. I always envisioned making school fun for her but clearly that's not the case. She tells me she has no imagination (what?!) and tells her dad that school is harder this year and there's a lot of work. 2 weeks down and we're both frustrated. How do I fix this?
<hugs> to you on this transition. I brought one child home in 10th grade and one in 3rd. There is a learning curve for everyone, including us parents who were public schooled.

In some ways, "real learning" is probably harder than what she's been doing in school. Spoon feeding is probably what she's used to, and what she feels successful at. It may take some modeling from you before she starts to see learning in a new way.

I'm wondering if you're using Adventures? If so, there are lots of activities scheduled for you, but often moms set aside activities when kids drag their feet with the pencilwork types of things. Instead, I encourage moms to realize that kids actually learn by doing activities, and in the younger years, it's probably best to skip the reading & writing if necessary, because the activities will likely be remembered best.

Gradually you can add more reading and pencil work, maybe starting with one thing. My son had a "pencil allergy" and my one pencil requirement wqs the Bible verse, but he could spread it over the week (yes, it was lame to take a week to write a sentence or two, but he was writing college papers by 11th grade). We also experimented with puppet narration and marker board summaries (use digital photos if you want records). Some moms act as scribes for younger kids. My son liked "writing" on the computer from a young age. I tried to give my son the perspective that homeschooling gives us lots of options, but not learning at all isn't one of them.

I'm also wondering if your daughter is an active learner. If she can remember more when she's jumping around than when she's sitting still, then you might experiment a bit with where she sits, etc. This past week I was telling family stories of all the crazy ways my son did school. My exception was copywork, when I required a chair but I spent some time making sure the seating was at the correct height for comfortable arm movement, and we did arm stretches beforehand.

Hopefully you will receive lots more ideas, especially after we know a little more about what you're using and what kind of a learner you have. Blessings as you get to know new sides of your little learner.
areed071509 wrote:Thank you for your reply. I can agree with everything you said. We are using Adventures in US History. And yes, as I interview her on how things were done at school, she says the teacher would tell her the answers when she said she didn't know - which was probably a lot since her grades were good at public school but she doesn't put the effort in at home and thinks the work is terribly hard. She does fidget quite a lot while writing and reading so I'm going to assume that yes she is an active learner.

Perhaps we can do school while scrubbing the bathroom together? ;)
Heehee, please post if that succeeds!

Some of the things my son did to keep moving while he learned in the elementary years:
- balanced on a giant gym ball (some public schools are using these now)
- hung from a chinup bar in the doorway
- rolled himself and his cat up like mummies
- flopped over the piano bench
- rolled about on the computer chair
- just generally moved about, using a clipboard for any papers he needed

It's easy to test whether this works. Just compare narration while moving to narration while sitting still. In my son's case, he could narrate just fine while moving, but told me when sitting that he couldn't remember anything because he was concentrating on sitting still. We did, however, find that he couldn't do anything noisy and listen well.

And again, just focusing on the activities this year will help, too. Somehow, we start out life by learning with our bodies, and it takes time to transition to learning through words.

HTH,
Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

ruthamelia
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 5:34 pm

Re: Public School to Homeschool

Unread post by ruthamelia » Tue Sep 08, 2015 10:54 pm

I really wish I had a great answer for the frustration you and your daughter are experiencing! It must be tough to have such a different beginning than you were anticipating. I just wanted to offer 2 thoughts that came to mind as I read your posts and Julie's replies.

While we started from the beginning, I have heard many others who switched to homeschooling after PS talk about a year of 'deschooling' (or some such label). Essentially, it takes time for children to break the habits of thinking of and responding to learning in the PS sense and rebuild different ideas and practices. Similarly, it takes us time to learn and try different things to see what fits us and our children. "Doing school" in such a radically different way may be uncomfortable for your daughter right now, but in time she may be able to adapt to this new normal. There is no right or wrong in how you work out your first year, but grace abounds!

Second, a wise seasoned homeschooler told me a while back that school does not always have to be fun. She described how she spent her first few years trying to make sure her kids were happy and entertained while doing school, until she decided that wasn't the primary purpose. Yes we want our kids to enjoy learning and the individualized nature of homeschooling provides nicely for that, the reality is that learning is work and takes effort. Not every subject or lesson will always be exciting or of keen interest to a student. Not all of us enjoy cleaning bathrooms (although my 4 year old thinks it is great fun!) but it needs to be done. Then we can move on to more enjoyable activities. I don't want to dampen your enthusiasm for creating a positive learning environment for your daughter, I just wanted to share this bit of wisdom that I have found helps me keep perspective.

Hope your next few weeks have some positive moments in them!
Kids in school: 15, 13, 11, 8, 6, 4, 4
We have used: K, First, all Investigate years
2018-2019: First, ECC, AHL

MelissaB
Posts: 368
Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 10:01 pm

Re: Public School to Homeschool

Unread post by MelissaB » Wed Sep 09, 2015 2:38 pm

I love both Julie & Ruthamelia's responses - totally agreeing! Those hands-on activities really are the most effective tool for learning when they're young.(!) My daughters are now 10 and 13 (turning 11 & 14 later this month!), and, looking back, those hands-on projects and the storytelling time in history were the most effective tools!

Also, Ruthamelia is so on target… Sometimes we moms want so badly for homeschooling to be fun that we let our children's emotions rule the day, which, of course, we quickly learn is healthy for no one. :)

There's a balance… and you'll find it!!

When we started hs our oldest daughter in the middle of her first grade year, she was unhappy, too. (Now, she loves it!) I remember so well the number of times she said, "That's not how my teacher does it." At first, I tried to make things as similar as possible to her experience at school. After about the hundredth time, I finally just couldn't keep jumping through hoops! I remember saying, "O.K., this is how we are going to do it…" :-)

I encourage you to spend some time with the Lord, asking Him for direction. No one knows your sweet daughter's mind and heart, how she learns, and what she needs to know as well as He does… And so you'll continue to go to Him for direction over and over throughout the years. As they get older, the questions change: "What sciences should we focus on?" "How much time should we spend on ____?" Just pray and trust Him. He'll gently lead you and your dh in all of the decisions!

May I share one idea? This comes from the book by Teri Maxwell who homeschooled eight children: she recommends a Saturday morning make-up school work time. During the week, she sets a timer for each handwritten/math task. If the work isn't finished when the timer goes off, she can start there the next day. Any incomplete schoolwork is finished on Saturday mornings. It took three weeks for her most active son to get focused and get that work done. But he made it!

If you talk with public school teachers, nothing goes exactly as they plan either most days! ;)

Try new things. Every child is different.

Love & Hug your daughter all that you can. She'll be 13 going on 14 before you blink! :)
Melissa B. (Arkansas)
Girls ages 16 & 13
Completed K, 1st, and Investigate {ECC; CTG; RTR; Expl.-1850; and 1850-Mod. Times}
"That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,.." Titus 2:4

klewfor3
Posts: 81
Joined: Wed Nov 09, 2011 4:14 pm
Location: Illinois

Re: Public School to Homeschool

Unread post by klewfor3 » Wed Sep 09, 2015 9:06 pm

Hi, Here's a few of my thoughts...

I went through a transition period with my ds too once we started homeschooling. He had gone to PS from preschool thru 1st grade. His second grade year was a HUGE learning curve for us both. My best advice is just FOLLOW THE TEACHERS MANUAL. Do everything you can. Don't skip anything you don't have to. Please don't take that in a harsh or legalistic sense, but in the most encouraging tone.

The reason I suggest to follow the TM is because, for me personally, I knew nothing about homeschooling. I had a very thorough public, traditional education...and (secretly) I loved it! Soooo....I did not really embrace the philosophy of homeschooling...it was just where the Lord had put us (thank you Lord!). Now, just because there is such a difference between hs and ps I felt my best chance to succeed at it was to trust in MFW's research and experience. It has paid off in spades. But, there were and still are many times I don't understand why or what we are asked to do, but I plow ahead and find that when I look back it all worked together and I am so thrilled with the education my kids are getting.

Oh, and I had a tough time too with it not being fun - all the time...but I found a quote that I loved and will hang in my schoolroom. "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and often looks like hard work." - Thomas Edison. To me that is the definition of our home school. It is the greatest opportunity for me as a mom, for my kids, and for our family. I don't want to miss it because it IS hard work.

I often joke that I am sure that we would not ever make it to the cover of a homeschooling magazine...but now I am pretty sure we'd at least be included in the issue. :-)
Kathy
Mom of Tyler 13, Paige 10, Brooklyn 9 and Chase 3
God bless us!
We've used:
MFW-K
MFW 1st (both versions)
MFW ADV
ECC
CTG
RTR
Expl-1850
Currently using 1850-Modern Times (2016/2017)

MelissaB
Posts: 368
Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 10:01 pm

Re: Public School to Homeschool

Unread post by MelissaB » Mon Sep 14, 2015 4:52 pm

klewfor3 wrote: My best advice is just FOLLOW THE TEACHERS MANUAL.
That's great advice.

That reminds me... May I share with you my mistake? :~ - Try to not purchase more than one curriculum for any subject, or add a lot of "extras." Choose one quality curriculum for each subject (MFW's suggestions for math and language are excellent!), follow the TM, and stick with it. ;)

May I quote my sweet (and wise) husband after I stressed about which math curriculum to purchase? After several months, he looked at me said, "This math curriculum is good... This (other) math curriculum is good.... Either one you choose is good! You can't make a bad choice here."

Enjoy!
Melissa B. (Arkansas)
Girls ages 16 & 13
Completed K, 1st, and Investigate {ECC; CTG; RTR; Expl.-1850; and 1850-Mod. Times}
"That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,.." Titus 2:4

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