4 year olds & early 5's - Ready but reluctant students

God's Creation From A to Z: A Complete Kindergarten Curriculum
cbollin

Re: Easily distracted Kindergartner...what should I do?

Unread post by cbollin » Tue Nov 22, 2011 6:25 am

I'm planning to have our last day of "school" for semester be around Dec. 16. I'm just hoping to kick start my high schooler into doing her work. She did great for the first 14 weeks, but right now she is not motivated to do anything. burn out? a little bit of lazy? both?

I think I was thinking "seasonal learning", review with him, practice reading fluency, read to him. Still learning and doing review, but enjoying the season of 2 big holidays right together. It gets harder to do that the older they get. And it's possible that with a start date in June that your child might be needing a semester break from formal material in the teacher's manual. This is a fun time of year to do little extras like reading and baking (language arts and math), and helping to address Christmas Cards or sign the family newsletter. Something a little different with the same skills so far.

hoping you get more answers or even links to previous answers on year round scheduling.

I've done such different stuff over the years with holidays. I've done the bah hum bug school approach (full steam ahead, maybe decorate the house, and we will finish through week 17 of the curriculum because we've been lazy). I've done "themed learning" for 3-4 weeks and then stop the week of Christmas and resume early January. Usually it's been more about sensing that a child needs a break from routine to let information settle when it is been too hard for more than 4 days in a row. Then, a subject might get set to the side for a few days and we play games. I'm not making sense.... my middle daughter had to go slowly through Singapore Math. So when it looked like she was not understanding something, I'd repeat the lesson the next day. If she was fine, we moved on. If she was needing more time, we'd do the lesson again but in more of game fashion (online game, or other).

hoping the year round people or someone with links to previous discussions will chime in.

Julie in MN
Posts: 2928
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: Easily distracted Kindergartner...what should I do?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:50 am

I'm one who's always saying "wait" and I like starting K as close to age 6 as possible. But I didn't homeschool K, so I don't have as much experience as Crystal and many others on the board. However, I feel chatty this morning :)

So, one option is of course to "wait" and not worry about K until he's 6 or so. Sounds like you're well familiar with that idea. But you're in the position of having already covered some of K, so you'd have to be willing to "start over" or at least back up a bit if needed, since some ground would likely be lost. Would you be discouraged by that or would you enjoy it just as much?

You'd also have to weigh what lesson your son would learn from stopping -- kids differ that way and you would know him best. I might lean towards keeping up school hours for him all year, just to be sure he wouldn't pick up any wrong ideas about stopping, and to use the time to develop those "school habits" that have to do with following directions, willingness to stop his play, picking up, following a daily schedule, etc. However, during those hours you might be as flexible as "no TV or video games during these two hours every day, but you can otherwise play what you like," or more structured with providing a "learning activity," "learning center," or "choice time" each day.

If you do decide to keep going with K, then I wouldn't feel guilty at all about taking holiday breaks. We follow a local public school calendar, and they have a full week off this week, plus two weeks off around Christmas. There are also so many other days off that it leaves my head spinning. Each year ends up differently, but some years there seemed to be no 5-day weeks from January through March. I imagine public school teachers know that both they and their students do need some regular time off, and then as for the rest I suppose they just have to work around it.

Or, another option is to still call it a school day but do fun stuff, like baking and party games (bingo with holiday candy markers, etc, can be found online). Plenty of those kinds of things are done in public schools, and one benefit is that it makes the idea of school seem more fun.

As for year-round schooling, another option you have as a homeschooler is to just end the school year wherever you are in the program and pick it up again the next fall. I've done that many times and don't think my kids knew the difference. But there are lots of year-round schoolers on this board, so I suggest starting another thread to catch their attention :)

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

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