jasntas wrote: My ds will only go through ECC once and I'm still a bit anxious about that and I hope I don't try to overdo it with him on that but
My middle gal did ECC in 4th and will not repeat it either. I'm trying to think back a little for some tips that worked for me to "not over do" it with her. (she's just finished 5th grade this year)
*she enjoyed having me sit with her to do the World Geography book pages with her. I looked at it not as "do your worksheet", but rather, let's practice together how to cross reference materials and learn along the way about other places.So the early continents we did together, then there were times she would try stuff on her own. I remember my own childhood of sitting with my grandparents and learning how to cross reference phone book, city directories and jury duty calling lists. (my grandfather was a deputy sheriff and back in the old days, jurors didn't call an automated number to learn if they were to report the next day. the jury sheriff would call and tell you. well, I learned how to call out the right number to granddaddy.) anyway, notice how my family didn't make me take "enrichment courses" in academics even though I was labeled as "gifted" in the public school. They taught me to water the plants, snap the beans, and cross reference multiple resource so that jury duty happened. Oh, never to answer the phone next to grandma's bed as t hat was the phone to dispatch the rescue squad. That was in the years' prior to 911 systems. and my grandparents were involved in starting the first rescue squad in our county, so while the new building was under construction, the 7 digit phone number to call went into their house. ok. all of that to say: don't sweat the worksheets, use them as a time to learn research and reference skills and 10 year olds can do that.
*middle gal loves watching animal shows on TV and some history/geography/mystery thing too. So, we did videos to show the world around us and learn landmarks and things like that.
*on Illustrated World Atlas, we did compare and contrast. I remember she noticed patterns in the maps section with the interstates. wow, USA has a lot, but this other place doesn't. How do people in that country? so, keep it "informal" so that the maps and charts are about learning how to read those maps/charts, and to glean a bit of information from them. Plenty of them she just didn't get, so I didn't worry about it. I know she'll get economics again in high school when she's older.
so, that's the academic side of it.
Bible/praying/missions: it becomes part of you even when the lesson plans aren't there. A family in our church is spending this year serving as support staff for bible translators on furlough. My middle gal follows her friends on facebook and their website. It's a lot of fun hearing how the boys are doing with lizards in the house and shower, and all of that.
Science: biggest tip I have for Prop of Eco: don't expect them to learn all of the new vocabulary in the first week. enjoy the pictures, experiments, and use the notebooking worksheets to fill in what they do remember or what they did learn. Don't worry if parts of blank.
When my oldest was 2nd grade and I didn't know we'd repeat ECC... story, her uncle and aunt were honeymooning in New Zealand. My husband's father (who was still doubting this homeschooling thing) talked to her like a 2nd grade grandchild about where her uncle was visiting. Grandpa said "it's an island in the ocean". My first born, being a first born, said 'well, actually it's 2 islands in one country. North Island and South Island. and here it is on a map"
that was enough. no one cared if she knew how many sheep were there, or the capital, or anything like that. So, grandpa has 9 children, and uh currently 8 grandchildren that i know about, and he wouldn't have expected a 4th grader to learn everything in the book. In fact, grandpa and his wife get to do lots of world traveling these days and they are still learning about other cultures. They sent us pics of China and stories about it. My kids were loving it. (there's that and this and oh yeah, squat pants in the village, no diapers, yeah). So, I guess I"m saying in all of this, you don't have to learn every fact in ECC. Help them develop a love of learning and praying and being able to enjoy grandparent's "slide shows" from Asia and South America. Grandpa raised 9 kids who are all super genius, high achiever (scientists, 2 lawyers, blues musician/office worker, an ad exec with Pepsi, etc.) and even grandpa is still learning about God's world.
I know that went nowhere. but hopefully as you do ECC with oldest in 4th, it might help you to treat him like a first born but with the experience of teaching a middle child, and seeing into the long term.