by Zsuzsanna Anderson from Are They All Yours?!?? – Homeschool Tips: Young Kids
Editor’s note: While learning to sit still and concentrate is difficult for many young children is having the child do housework instead of sitting down to teach them to read really the best educational choice? Any teachers of first grade or kindergarten out there that can address the issues of not doing much schooling with the younger children?
Off topic: Looking at her husband Steven Anderson’s blog this morning I noticed that while Zsuzsanna’s blog links to Steven’s, his does not link to hers. All very interesting.
When in doubt, do less! For a kindergarten student, “school” sessions of doing actual bookwork should be limited to 20 minutes at a time, for a maximum of twice per day. If you or the child feel frustration rising, stop right there and pick back up another time.As a general rule, I do not enforce any set days for school until about 3rd grade. In those lower grades, kids have little bookwork, which can be caught up easily during those times that they want to sit still and there are not more pressing issues needing to be dealt with that day. In those grades, I also do not force the children to work on subjects they don’t like.Learning in the lower grades should be student-led, interest-based, and hands-on. Examples of this are: Ask your child what (s)he is interested in, and get books from the library on that topic. Have family story time before bed as often as you can. Do lots of art projects, science experiments, field trips, etc. Involve the child(ren) in the daily work of running the home, whether that be watering the dog or keeping baby busy by talking to it. Besides reading, learning in the lower grades should focus on creating a love of learning, building confidence, and training character. Academic achievements can wait!
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