OK, in my quest to figure out what to do next with my not yet 5 year old who can add and subtract with the best of them (though he cannot subtract 2-digit numbers yet, at least not without beads), I borrowed some textbooks from my awesome friend Abby.

These are actual school textbooks. For Kindergarten. Two volumes. OK, we’ve already done everything in those books (with the exception of a few exercises I thought were interesting enough to repeat, and then also one spent a bit of time on symmetry, which I guess hadn’t occurred to me to specifically point out to him).

But I’m not saying that to brag, I don’t think Wally’s particularly genius or anything.

It’s more to ask… seriously?

I mean, there is an ENTIRE unit on Before and After, with enough activities to fill an entire day talking about it. There is a whole unit on 5. They divide patterns into 4 units. What is a pattern, copying a pattern, extending a pattern, predicting a pattern.

I mean, I guess we followed those steps, too, but in about 5 minutes.

So, my question. Are we breezing through too quickly, such that he’s not going to remember? (I was worried about that with addition and subtraction, but even though we haven’t talked about it for weeks, he can still add or subtract on demand.) Or do schools just take an inordinately long time to teach stuff?

I mean, I guess at this rate, we (and every other homeschooler) will complete the public school education in about three school years total, and then can fill all the extra time with learning extra super bonus stuff, such that I WILL have the smartest kid in the whole world, right?

Now, these are the only textbooks I’ve actually looked at to date (I mean, since graduating from high school), so maybe they’re for dumb kids or something, but I just am very underwhelmed looking at them.


5 responses to “Homeschooling

  1. Remembering info. I learned from the days when my kids were in school, the “typical” child may need as many as 10 repetitions of a concept before mastery, whereas a gifted child may need only 1-3.
    The textbooks are written for the masses, taught in a classroom of at least 25 students of varying emotional maturities and intellectual abilities by one person (usually), also of varying intellectual and emotional abilities.
    My experience is that textbooks are useful only as a broad-stroke outline of what is taught in a given grade.

  2. If it makes you feel better…we don’t do anything. 🙂 I’m not even thinking about starting “real” school stuff until this fall. We do the typically unschool-y stuff…but nothing formal. So don’t stress. 🙂

  3. I read once that it takes approx 30 min. to teach at home what it will take a teacher in a classroom all day to teach her students. I guess it comes down to being able to be very one on one with your child, and knowing how they will best learn and retain the info. Teachers are over worked and under paid and don’t have the support to spend one on one time or really cater to each individual child’s learning style. 🙂 IMO.

  4. Oh, I’m not stressed at all. We do the schedule we do because Wally likes it. He loves having “Homeschool” as an official Time We Set Aside To Do Homeschool. He doesn’t ever believe me that we’ve done homeschool for the day if we haven’t sat down in the sunroom at our little table and Done Homeschool. Then when he says we’re done, we’re done.

    I had borrowed the books to see what schools do, if we had forgotten anything, what to do next. The books made me feel Super Competent, and like I have a Super Smart Child, which was nice. 🙂

  5. I don’t think Kindergarten is meant to weed out AP or remedial students 😉 I think those books are just going over the basics needed for grade school- and there is no measure of where the kids *should* be before Kindergarten, as for some kids it will be their first introduction to any schooling at all and others will have been in preschool for two years before- just like some parents will spend time working with their kids on certain skills and others won’t, some kids will come in knowing how to read, others won’t be confident with the alphabet. By having the information in the textbooks it isn’t assuming that none of the kids know the information, but rather it’s dictating the skills needed to move on- don’t you think?

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