Did you ever read that post on the 5 Tips for Homeschooling Multiple Ages? No? Then have a quick read, I will wait. That was a great post for those who homeschool older kids. I realized, however, that I haven’t actually shared how I homeschool both kids- my first grader and preschooler in the same session.
Before I tell you how I actually pull this astoundingly simplistic process that we have, I will tell you what happened before we started this new routine.
How I Homeschooled Both Kids Then
Prior to our new routine, I taught Jael (my first grader) first. We did all her subjects together while Caleb entertained himself. On the days that Caleb refused to entertain himself, we homeschooled during quiet time. This guaranteed that Caleb stayed in his room. It also meant that Jael had zero downtime in the afternoon. Poor thing but still, we pushed on until we could no longer continue this pattern. If I wasn’t completely exhausted after this, I would do a few activities with Caleb in his room.
Next, we tried giving Caleb a few Leap Frog videos while he sat at the table with us- that backfired hard! Why? Because Jael wanted to watch the videos as well. She wanted to sing, “The A says ah,” even though she could read!! Yeah, I totally should have expected that one. But there is one thing that I know now and it is that if something doesn’t work, just keep tweaking until it does.
How I Homeschool Both Kids Now
Now that I have explained what happened before, let me share what happens now.
Our homeschool session starts with Jael working on her Arithmetic speed tests as well as her Math classwork sheets courtesy of A Beka.
While she does this, I get Caleb’s math activity together. I explain it to him and then allow him to work on it. Note I do the same subject at the same time. We tend to start with Math first as it takes the most time and Jael needs to refresh herself on her addition families as well as subtraction families. It’s also great because Caleb can now sing our chant for inches and feet.
Once Math is done, we have a quick snack ideally. Most times we skip it and power through.
After snack, we move on to literacy. This includes Language, Writing/ Tracing/ Fine Motor with Reading and Phonics. We again start out by reviewing our charts. First, we review the letter sounds for Caleb’s sake. Once this is done I hand Caleb his literacy activity.
While Caleb works, Jael and I work on her special sounds. We say the sound and then spell them. Once done, she works on her activity.
When everyone is done, we play a game to reinforce what we learned. By this time I am probably emotionally drained (yup, I won’t lie homeschooling takes a lot out of you). We then have lunch and then it is off to quiet time so we can relax before dinner time.
Key Points for You
- Do subjects together
- Find simple independent activities for your youngest child to do
- Keep them all in the same area if they don’t disturb each other.