I am pulling the younger 2 and hsing after the holidays. School is out in about 3 weeks and it gives me time to figure out what I am doing.
I know my laws (in colorado). I just dont know where to start. I tried looking online and get over whelmed.
What do you all use/do. Online curriculum or something else? If so what? Any and all info would be great help.
Try looking at lessonpathways.com. it will cover both girls. And give you some ideas about what they need to learn.
I do history and science together for all my kids and it helps keep our day at a less stressful pace.
You could even do literature on the same level and read to them. Then have them do similar work that is on their levels.
Math would definitely have to be on each of their own levels as well as grammar, spelling and handwriting.
4th-5th grade with the issues you describe, I would school them the same.
We like Easy grammar, Write Source and All About Spelling (AAS), for language arts. AAS is multisensory and designed for kids with issues. Easy grammar has short workbook pages and we dont work cover to cover. We skip around to keep it interesting.
Math I adore MUS though DD isnt getting the multiplication as well as I would like so we supplement that with flashcards and online games.
For DS, who is a visual learner, it is Teaching Textbooks. We started him on MUS but he became overwhelmed and we decided to try TT.
He loves it and does well in it.
First decide religious or non religious curriculum...Will cut choices down.
Then think about what kind of learner your child is.
Decide your budget.
Buy supplies (filler paper, copy paper, notebooks, binders, folders, pens, pencils, composition notebooks & art supplies)
Check dollar stores for workbooks (handwriting, letters, numbers, shapes, colors)
Check local goodwill and thrift stores for used curriculum you can use, Harcourt and prentice hall are great .
My advice is to not try and do things the way schools do. You don't have to anymore. Start slow, allowing for a period of deschooling. It's ok that they treat every day like a Saturday for a few months. Use this time to really get to know each other, play games, watch movies, go to museums, etc. Then ease into a curriculum. You can print things off the web (worksheets, puzzles, etc), check out some workbooks and programs at the bookstore, or maybe just piece some things together yourself based on how you know they learn. THIS is a great reference for what to cover in each grade.
Homeschooling is way more efficient - I'm done with seatwork in a couple of hours. Then my ds spends the rest of his afternoon pursuing his own interests, hanging out with friends. going to his MMA boxing class, or maybe get together with our homeschool group for a field trip.
My ds is dyslexic with processing issues as well. I am happy to say he has consistently remained at or above grade level in all subjects. He can even read out loud quickly, fluently, and clearly without any hint of an issue. I homeschool the way that workds for HIM. No stress and life is wonderful.
Good luck on your new homeschooling journey!
Read, read, read! I have teaching books, books on the different learning theories, and books on the different learning styles that my kids have. I read those for help in how to get started while my oldest was enrolled in the K12 program so that I was ready when I pulled him to do it ourselves. I had more than 3 weeks to prepare, but it was so very helpful to me.
Some of my favorites for really great reading ideas are What Teachers Can Do When Kids Can't Read by Kylene Beers (even if your kid is an awesome reader it has really great ideas!) and Raising a Spirited Child by Kurcinka (it really helps me put a positive spin on some of the not so positive problems I come across). I also read a book about Boundaries.
We like curriculum, so we do a lot of curriculum based learning, but we are also kind of child led learners in Science. The boys pick out the topics they want to cover with minimal guidance from me, then I research as much materials and activities as I can possibly find on the topics they want to cover and they pick through them and choose what they want to do what angle they want to head through, etc. It works well for us!
No online curricula for us (but for some supplements) and no public virtual schools.
We are traditionally scholastic; we use an eclectic mix of textbooks, workbooks, manipulatives etc from various homeschool publishers (Catholic or secular).
I agree about reading up on different methods. Then give yourself some time to let your head clear because yes, it's likely to be spinning.
When I first took my kids out we did some workbooks from the parent / teacher store but you can also get them at Sams club and any bookstore. We used the library constantly too. That was it.
Here are my best tips for new homeschoolers. I wrote it for teen students but most of it fits for any age.
1. Look up your state laws. Make sure you are in compliance. I like this site rather than HSLDA
2. Decide what your mutual goals for the future of your student are, high school degree, GED, college and so on.
3. Find out your teen's best learning styles. I'd use POC4U to aide this.
4. Research ways to do an education along with your teen. I recommend The Teenage Liberation Handbook.
5. Pick out curriculum (if any) WITH your teen. I do not recommend buying a full curriculum the first year. It tends to lead to frustration and a waste of money.
6. Be flexible, expect change.
7. Locate local groups and resources.
8. Don't forget to make it fun, relax now and then, just enjoy each other.
9. Be sure to keep your student in touch with any friends they really want to spend time with and which you do not feel are a really bad influence.
And finally, relax, relax, relax. The very best thing you can do is de-school. Let your students find what their are passions and pursue them.
I have one that has won a four year academic scholarship and one that has won a renewable athletic scholarship. That's only my student athlete's first college visit and offer. There are more offers to come.
Stressing over making your child learn or doing what the public or private schools are doing or doing enough won't help you or them. I wish someone had told me that when I began and that I could have wrapped my head around it and believed it.
Love them. Like them. Trust them. Support their dreams even when you don't like or understand what they are. This is the best gift you can give anyone. It's also a gift that will allow them to do things that will impress you over the years.
I have a 5th grade girl. This is what she is doing this year -
Math: Saxon 54 (we also have DIVE DVDs which go along with the lessons, but I think I could teach this program without them)
Reading/History/Geography: We do Sonlight readers - but I didn't buy a box set this year. We did last year. She's on Core E this year (second part of Core D/E). I just found the book list online and decided which ones we'll be using. So we're studying US history from the Civil War (including it) until now. We're studying around 1900 right now, reading Little House (and watching sometimes, fun!), and Strawberry Girl, which is actually part of my 2nd graders Sonlight but we combine read alouds whenever we can. There's something in it for everyone.
Science - Cosmeo (not sure if I like it yet), documentaries, science experiment kits
She is also learning to sew and crochet, and taking classes at a co-op - Stage Skills and Choir.
I found a few sites and books that have helped me by checking out recommendations from The National Center for Learning Disabilities. I have nothing to add to the technical advice here, but I want to second the recommendation to deschool for a while. You can research recommendations for the length of time devoted to deschooling, but it ultimately depends on your kids and your family structure. I took a couple of months off with ODS when I withdrew him from (his miserable experience with) PS, but because he is a natural bookworm with a very active, inquisitive mind, he was unintentionally, voraciously unschooling during that time. ;0)
Please allow me to assuage your fears and address your apprehension. Homeschooling is going to feel so overwhelming in the beginning, but it really becomes very natural for most families who attempt it! I have a four year old ASD LO, and I've been handling his speech and OT on top of school, plus running a growing home business. We cook everything from scratch in our house and I devote a lot of time to sourcing organic, sustainable foods and materials, which I have to do because of LO's ASD and my health issues. I have slow thyroid and adrenal fatigue, and I'm not kidding when I tell you that there is NO WAY I could do all that I do if I had to take this child to outside school, speech therapy, OT, etc. Homeschooling is very fluid for us, and fits seamlessly into our lifestyle. I think we each have our unique set of challenges and talents, and you will make this work for you.
I've bought most everything we use for homeschooling secondhand, and we get a lot of value out of our Amazon Prime membership. The good news is, considering you have three kids, you probably already own most of what you need to get started. A library card and Internet access are the very basic necessities, and believe it or not, many, many parents homeschool with just those resources. Don't forget that way back in the olden days before institutionalized education (and before the Internet!) in this country, twelve year olds had learned more than the average college graduate of today. Books are the cornerstone of real education.
In the beginning, I spent just a few minutes a day for a few days researching learning styles and homeschool teaching methods, and it is a task I repeat every now and then to both reinforce my decisions and expand my perspective, and I do tweak minor things here and there all the time. I pray for our homeschooling efforts, and I purposely cultivate gratitude that we have this opportunity, even when (and especially when) LO is at his most challenging. A relaxed attitude and open-minded research will help you decide your approach and build your confidence while you deschool the kids and get comfortable in the mindset of a homeschooling mama. Welcome aboard!