Our first week of homeschooling has thus far been a complete success!
I'm loving it, the girls are loving it, and it's such a relief to be done with public school!
Aside from all the other positives, I'm really grateful we are able to homeschool these last few weeks so that we are able to get a taste of what it's like before first grade starts for them in August/September. ^_^
So far we've gotten into a nice rhythm that works for us...although I want to start figuring out a way to give them separate lessons in math and english. I've noticed one of my girls gets a bit bored and ready to move on quickly while my other daughter is still working on understand the new material.
Any advice on working with children on different learning levels? I guess it seems awkward for me because they are the same age I'm not quite sure how to go about it :)
Since they just came out of school, you might want to look into something called "deschooling". It's kind of a break from anything schoolish for about a month or 2 (the unofficial rule of thumb is one month of deschooling for every year they were in school). It gets the school out of their system and opens them up to learning in their own way. So, instead of immediately throwing academics at them, go to a museum, a restaurant, the zoo, the movies, get a mani-pedi together, go on a nature walk, play games, explore your town together, etc. Get to know them again. Let them find and build passions. Let them choose what the day will hold (of course if they choose schoolwork -mine did- , then go with it, lol). There is plenty of time for academics in the fall. :)
I use math journals so while one is bring taught the other is playing with math in his journal. My kids have to have all free time together. They don't have to be doing the same thing but they can't stand the thought of one of them playing without the other. Maybe have a box independent educational activities.
How old are they? Could one do independent reading/literature/coloring while you work the other on ELA?
I have two children doing school this upcoming fall, working on different levels (big age gap - DD will be 13, DS 5).
Roughly, it looks like this:
In the morning DD12 will have her "independent subjects". These are minimal as she is dyslexic and most of her work is mom intensive, but I've been able to get a few on her independent list :) She'll do the following from about 9 to 11 am: Religion reading (supplemental reading; saints, etc), geography, science reading, and work on any long term projects.
While she's doing this, I'll do kindergarten with my middle boy (I also have a 2 year old floating around here, lol).
At 11 I put my 2 year old down for his nap - this will give me a solid 2-3 hours to work with DD12 on spelling, writing, formal religion studies (once weekly), literature team reading, and maths. DD will do her own lab work in the afternoons and weekends for science (she's science focused this year - biology, chemistry, astronomy) in the basement (we're converting part into a science lab area for her).
DD12 is in charge of art and some read alouds with DS5.
Congrats on everything going smoothly thus far :)
Youc ould still have them work on the same things, just let the one who finishes more quickly read or play an educational game while you work with the other one. OR if she is actually advancing to further chapters more quickly, start math with one, while the other is doing an activity or assignment that you don't need to help with as much so you can focus on the one math lesson, and when you've finished, switch to the other child.... (does that make sense?)
With my 2 (10, and 5), I end up starting the day a little earlier with my youngest (he's an early riser) and get through some of his work with him where I need to really focus on him. When my oldest gets up, I start working with her inbetween the assignments my little guy is doing. The one thing I have though is that my oldest can independantly work on the majority of her work at this point... If for some reason they both get up at the same time (which is very rare since my daughter is NOT a morning person), and we start school with everyone together, then I start math with my daughter since she catches on quickly and works on her own fine, and then move over to my little guy's math. They'll finish around the same time, so then we move on to some subjects they do together just at different levels, like history or science, and then we go back to two different extremes like reading/literature. I'll start Jamie on her assignment, while Riley waits, and then work with him. Sometimes while they wait I have them work on handwriting or journaling or some silly word problem or a Mad Lib.
(sorry if I"m rambling...my brain isn't quite awake this morning)