or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › Education › Learning at Home and Beyond › Delayed academics support thread
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Delayed academics support thread - Page 3

post #41 of 70
Thread Starter 
Wow! Wonderful thought provoking responses!

My frustrations are my own and I would never berate a mama for doing structured activities and academics at a young age. I guess it's my own frustrations with what the internet is teaching unknowing mamas about homeschooling which mirrors what is going on in the public school system. It's my own frustrations with the world and my own need to say ENOUGH! Time to stop and simplify. According to the internet blogoshere (where many people get their info) homeschooling is complicated and full of lapbooks and printables and themed weeks and a lot of time consuming effort. I applaud the mamas who can do happily and keep up but I would say they are the minority. Uh, or maybe I'm just the three-headed freak.

I am also wondering how our own upbringings affect what we do with out children. Personally, I am very schooled. My mom's doctor told her to put me into preschool for 2 years to help me become more unattached to her. I was reading 3rd grade level in K. My parents never had me skip a grade but I was always singled out of the class and separated because I was performing so above grade level. In high school I graduated #1/300. After college I was accepted full ride into a law school. Thankfully, I bucked, became a firefighter/EMT, meet my hubby, and became a homemaker. And yes, my family (okay, father) looks at it as a "failure" that I am a homemaker and not "living up to my potential." My schooling and activities in my early life and left a feeling that nothing is ever enough. No "success" is ever enough and I am never good enough. I'm sure I am pushing heavily against that when I seek delayed academics for my children. I don't want them to have what I had.

In the mean time I'm daring to live life how I want to. I'm daring myself to be the person I want to, the mama I want to, and the homeschooler I want to. But those darn blogs suck me in and sometimes I get caught up.

As an aside: there is no secret to getting a 4 y.o. to clean the chicken coop. She wants to! Does that mean my 4 y.o. has inherited my three-headed tendances?

Lillian J - I am very sorry to hear the news.
post #42 of 70
I was so tired last night - my comments about this being a hard week were just by way of explaining that I'm feeling pretty burned out, but wish I had the energy to be able to be more articulate about this subject that's one I care so much about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yllek View Post
My personal response to the educational trend that you were describing is to homeschool. We just don't participate in that whole system.
The mainstream educational trends are important to be aware of, though, because they seem to be fueling new homeschoolers' concerns about the timelines they think are necessary for their own children. The madness I was referring to is the thing that's growing in the educational world itself, driven by educrats who have their eyes on test scores rather than on children - and that's affecting everyone.

I saw what went on in schools when I started out long ago as a student teacher, later when my son and his friends later attended various schools, and I've been in and around the homeschooling world for a long time. What radical changes I've seen! When my son was in preschool, it was one in an affluent town with a pretty competitive sort of population, and yet there was no pre-reading or number learning going on - the focus was on enriching their play and imagination experiences in fun ways. If he had gone on to "pre-k" there, he would have been introduced to those things in playful ways, but not with worksheets or expectations - and the focus would have remained on imaginative play, music and art, and casual nature studies. Kindergarten would have started to solidify the intake of numbers and simple arithmetic, letters and reading - which is what my generation got in the 1st grade! But today, things have changed so much across the mainstream educational world, that even many homeschoolers are concerned about introducing reading to 3 year olds and even younger.

Quote:
What I was commenting on earlier was not your stance on general educational policy, but what I took to be a snub on some individual moms who were excited about what they were doing with their kids and wanting to share on the Internet.
I've certainly never had any intention of snubbing anyone about such things, haven't been aware of such a thing in this forum, and my take was that people in this thread were commenting about things they've had to deal with in real life - friends and acquaintances bragging about or comparing what their little ones are doing. Maybe some of it was about reactions to things they've read here, but I don't think anyone meant it as bashing others' paths so much as celebrating their own. I think starting this thread was brilliant - because I don't think I've ever seen a thread where people can feel free to indulge their passions for this way of thinking without others feeling their views are being challenged.

Quote:
To the extent that I misunderstood the intent of your comment, I do apologize. I guess I feel a little sensitive to what I perceive might be a judgmental attitude. Being a homeschooling mama is tough enough, you know? But since no judgment was intended and I clearly misunderstood, well, strike what I said.
And it is a judgmental attitude - a very passionate one at that - about what's coming down the educational tubes from on high. I think getting started in homeschooling is much tougher today than it once was, partly because there are so many people trying to make a living off of selling and promoting things they want to make new homeschoolers feel they need, and partly because the educational trends promoted by public schools make it look as if very young children should be accomplished in skills they really have no need of till much later. I think it just makes it harder when people feel they have to carefully tiptoe around not to say something that might accidentally offend someone who's just getting started and quite understandably believes she has to go along with those trends. I wish homeschoolers I knew when I was just getting started had been more forthright with me instead of tiptoeing around so much - it really would have helped. - Lillian

post #43 of 70
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lillian J View Post
. I think it just makes it harder when people feel they have to carefully tiptoe around not to say something that might accidentally offend someone who's just getting started and quite understandably believes she has to go along with those trends. I wish homeschoolers I knew when I was just getting started had been more forthright with me instead of tiptoeing around so much - it really would have helped. - Lillian

I haven't dared told my story of getting into the insanity of homeschooling until recently. It's because I was a "new" homeschooler and I thought I would be judged around you BTDT homeschoolers. I desperately felt that I should be "getting" this. I was banging my head against a wall on a daily basis. I truly felt I should be doing what is currently portrayed. It was driving me insane and sucking the joy out of my "homeschooling." Had I not been so ardently for homeschooling I would have given up - at preschool!!!! I finally decided to openly speak about my problems with homeschooling preschool. I think it's a problem that needs to be discussed. The internet is forming a leading edge that I fear will turn many potential homeschoolers away. It's telling you that homeschooling is complicated and time consuming.

On a lighter side:



"educrat"

That word just made my day.
post #44 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by beezer75 View Post
The internet is forming a leading edge that I fear will turn many potential homeschoolers away. It's telling you that homeschooling is complicated and time consuming.
Oh, dear. It's good to get that input from someone who's recently been on the other side. So sorry to hear that. Things are moving so rapidly that it's sometimes hard to get a broad perspective on it. - Lillian
post #45 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by BunnySlippers View Post
On the other hand some kids really are ready for early learning, or need the structure of a school day at a young age. It would just be nice if it was all on a kid-by-kid basis without the competition for being the best.
I have one child whose was ready(and demanding) early academics and one who was not. I have to say though the term "delaying academics" applied to kids under school age bothers me. I'm not saying this to pick on anyone but it s symptom of our society. Not using a formal curriculum with your 1,2,3,4 year old is not delaying academics. INTRODUCING the curriculum is early academics. It's something every parent has a right to do if they feel it is best, but they are doing it EARLY other people are not doing it late. This idea that not introducing FORMAL academics to preschoolers/toddlers is delaying anything is sad and does show the state of education in this country.

Sorry Bunny I'm quoting your post but this is in response to several different posts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The4OfUs View Post
This is NOT to say that I think you shouldn't count steps when you're climbing, or point out colors when you're walking around, or letters on trucks or working things into daily life in a natural, unforced way so that the kid absorbs stuff that way....it's the setting up areas for purposeful academic learning for kids under 4, and feeling like it's going to give your kid some big advantage in learning or life that I don't get.

Just let them be kids and work fun stuff into your daily lives, unless they're pulling at your leg to specifically show them how to spell or read.

But uh, likely preaching to the choir here.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Lillian J View Post


I think Metoo and I were both referring to the influences in society that are causing parents across the board - those with children in schools, and those who are homeschooling - to feel pressured to get their very young children started into academics. It's not a "we"/"they" thing - it's a widespread and powerful educational trend that really bothers me. And educrats are pulling younger and younger children into schools. But everyone is not necessarily having a good time -
Lillian

This is exactly what I'm talking about. The government has taken studies done on some VERY impoverished children and used it to brainwash Americans into believe that younger and younger children "need to be in school". Look at all the slogans they used, the "educational" toys/video game push, then on the flip side you keep hearing all about how America is falling behind, Americans lack creativity, ingenuity, problem solving skills.......All the skills children develop when they PLAY.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoyMC View Post
Meetoo, it sounds like you have a plan in place, but if you are looking for more non-academic resources for a little one, i must post you to Lillian's AWESOME page that i post all over the place all the time. scroll down below the articles to see the activities: http://www.besthomeschooling.org/gateway/inted16.html
I love Lillian's site.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lillian J View Post


I'm especially exhausted tonight - it's been a very hard week involving the news of the suicide of an close friend's son (not a homeschooler, but I don't mean to imply it matters), and a nasty back injury that's just clearing up, so I'm off to bed. - Lillian
I'm sorry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by beezer75 View Post
Wow! Wonderful thought provoking responses!

My frustrations are my own and I would never berate a mama for doing structured activities and academics at a young age. I guess it's my own frustrations with what the internet is teaching unknowing mamas about homeschooling which mirrors what is going on in the public school system. It's my own frustrations with the world and my own need to say ENOUGH! Time to stop and simplify. According to the internet blogoshere (where many people get their info) homeschooling is complicated and full of lapbooks and printables and themed weeks and a lot of time consuming effort. I applaud the mamas who can do happily and keep up but I would say they are the minority. Uh, or maybe I'm just the three-headed freak.
You are not a three head freak. Young kids learn through the world around them. I think somewhere along the line the idea that kids "learn through play" got turned into to "adults should make learning be play". It's totally different. Not to say it should never ever be done. It's just different.

My toddler spent sometime this morning learning about sorting/classifying objects. It is a helpful math and reading skill. She learned this by emptying the dishwasher with me. This is not a skill she has perfected (I had to pull many spoons out of the knife slot ), but if she keeps helping me empty the dishwasher she will learn plenty about sorting/classifying by the time she is school age.

Now, sure I could have made a game for her to teach her to sort/classify, but honestly she is not ready to learn that skill yet. So a game would have set her up for "failure". She is however, ready to help me empty the dishwasher. By allowing her to help she is gaining the autonomy most toddlers want, and being introduced to new concepts. It is done in a child friendly "learn by doing way" Not a "do to learn way".
When kids truly "learn through play " they are learning the concepts they are ready to learn all while being introduced to harder and harder concepts. I would be willing to bet by the time she is 3-4 there will be counting involved while we put our dishes away. Maybe even estimating what utensil we own the most of... it all just sort of naturally flows.

Not sure if this makes any sense as said toddler also doesn't sleep through the night yet.


If you don't own a dishwasher your kids are DOOMED!!!
post #46 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by meetoo View Post
I have to say though the term "delaying academics" applied to kids under school age bothers me. I'm not saying this to pick on anyone but it s symptom of our society. Not using a formal curriculum with your 1,2,3,4 year old is not delaying academics. INTRODUCING the curriculum is early academics. It's something every parent has a right to do if they feel it is best, but they are doing it EARLY other people are not doing it late. This idea that not introducing FORMAL academics to preschoolers/toddlers is delaying anything is sad and does show the state of education in this country.
Thank you, thank you, thank you! This has been bothering me for quite some time, too, but I didn't even know where to begin trying to articulate this.

Quote:
The government has taken studies done on some VERY impoverished children and used it to brainwash Americans into believe that younger and younger children "need to be in school". Look at all the slogans they used, the "educational" toys/video game push, then on the flip side you keep hearing all about how America is falling behind, Americans lack creativity, ingenuity, problem solving skills.......All the skills children develop when they PLAY.
You're on a roll today! And I'm sinking to the point where it's all I can do to pick from silly emoticons - I think it's time to go rest my back and watch some intellectually challenging cooking show.

Quote:
I love Lillian's site.
Happy to read that - I completely missed Joy's comment on it till you quoted it. Thanks, Joy!

Quote:
If you don't own a dishwasher your kids are DOOMED!!!
I remember a very, very serious dad asking me at the end of a talk I did at a homeschooling conference, "Am I to understand that I need to have a Nintendo system in order to homeschool my kids?"

Lillian
post #47 of 70
Yeah, the "learning through play" is bandied about, at least around here, by the preschools. My DS is so extroverted that we briefly thought about putting him in 2 day per week preschool (at 3.3). We narrowed down hundreds of programs in our area to one. Yup, one. We wanted 2 part-day per week option at 3 and at 4. We wanted mixed ages (though I hardly call 3&4's together mixed-ages!) and we obviously required it be non-academic (yes, we have "Academies" that have 3 year olds in uniforms and sitting at desks--at least for part of the day!) But even the one lonely preschool we found that sounded great had labels on every object in the school with the word of what the item was. That really bugged me! I want my kid to see a chair as a chair--or a horse, use it to make forts, sit in it to draw a picture. Not memorize the letters and their order. When we visited the kids were all sitting in a corner looking up at a cacophony of glossy posters and rehearsing their numbers, days of the week, weather, etc. One would be asked to stand up in front of the group and basically be quizzed about what the weather was doing outside. Most of the day was (apparently) spent playing in groups and doing crafts, but if that was "play-based" we decided to pass. Really, though, it's about "kindergarten readiness" which I suppose if we were going that route I'd be really happy to see this school. The teachers were great (we even talked Waldorf with the director, her oldest is in a Waldorf school, and Montessori, which she has studied and infuses in her program). Honestly I think it was a great preschool and for someone planning the school route I'd recommend it, but it just didn't sit right with me.
post #48 of 70
As for those of us with 3 year olds talking about "delayed academics". I totally agree with you about the terminology. Same way I hate it when someone says "organic or regular". But the issue is that most kids are doing academic things at 3 these days. My nephew was memorizing an Encyclopedia at 3! My cousin-once-removed has a kid "laptop" with math programs. Our music class teacher sent out an email a while back asking (for a parent client) for a tutor recommendation for a 3 year old.

You are right that that technically is "early academics" but when the majority of the population is doing it, suddenly NOT doing it sort of becomes 'delayed'.

Either way, I'm still mostly with you. For me what we are doing now is just avoiding early academics, or in my mind we're just "living". When we do a very loose--almost unschool but not quite Kindy thru 3rd or maybe even 5th, then I'll truly call it "Delayed".
post #49 of 70
First, Lillian, I am so sorry for your friend's loss.

Second, meetoo, ITA with everything you wrote (that Lillian just quoted and commented on). The thing is, yeah, we say "delaying academics" as a means of conveying what we're doing in the context of the way the culture currently operates. I have, more than once, been very aware of the insanity of using that term with 4yos. I have never really connected with people who would seriously start teaching their kids academically before that and I'm not thrilled with the preschools that do it.

As for the gov't twisting research and that getting exploited by media: it's the American way. Same can be said for medicine and nutrition. Ya know--"save the people from themselves!"
post #50 of 70
i'll come back and read more later

my oldest (5 in a week) does have a good amount of skills -- but his immatuirty prevents us actually doing anything with them -- for example i know he has the tool he needs to learn to read, but he can't sit / pay attention / attend to it -- so uless it "clicks" for him all on his own it is still gonna be a year or more till he reads.
post #51 of 70
I have found no difference or benefit between cramming academics down a child's throat next to letting them learn naturally.

My older children are all way advanced in school. Yet, neither of them were fluent readers until 7. My now 9 yr old is ahead, but he used to be way way ahead. He was reading chapter books before kindergarten. But he has slowed down a lot. My 6 yr old, I am barely teaching, but he is learning on his own. Oh, the 9 yr old, I never taught him a thing, he picked it up on his own.

From my experience, of watching kids through the years, my oldest is about to turn 16, those who start off fast seem to fizzle out and those who start off slow, (think slow and steady) are the ones who do the best in the long run. It is proving correct in my family and for every child I have ever known.
post #52 of 70

I haven't gotten a chance to read all of this thread yet. First chance I have more than a 10 minute window I plan to sit down with a cuppa tea and do so.

 

DD1 has attended public school since Kindergarden. Prior to that she attended 2 1/2 years of Montessori Preschool. We are new to Homeschooling, and won't "officially" start with her until the Christmas break. What I've learned is to embrace my child's personal interest. With the exception of public school, she has never been pushed into academics early. She didn't start to read until she was about 6yrs old and now at 8yrs reads wonderfully and without any issues. Math concepts are something she really enjoys along with Science.

 

DD2 just turned 5yrs. We have been homeschooling for 6 weeks. Prior to homeschooling she attended a Montessori Preschool for 2 1/2 years and is currently attending a structured activity 2 days a week for 2 1/2 hours, similar to a "play" school concept. We work on things that she is interested in. Up until 2mo ago she had NO interest in letters or writing. She likes to be read to. In recent weeks she has learned ABC. Not the song, she already knew that. But the actual letters, the letter sounds and has started writing letters and her name. She gravitated to numbers about a year ago and can count Gosh I don't know beyound 200. Loves to add things together and knows what the number is. Hasn't shown any interest in writing numbers yet though.

post #53 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa1970 View Post

From my experience, of watching kids through the years, my oldest is about to turn 16, those who start off fast seem to fizzle out and those who start off slow, (think slow and steady) are the ones who do the best in the long run. It is proving correct in my family and for every child I have ever known.

 

Just so I understand what you're trying to say, do you mean that those who have a NATURAL tendency to want to learn things early fizzle out and fare worse in the long-run?  Or those who have it PUSHED on them early (and seem to do okay with it)?  It sounds like you mean to say that kids who naturally want to do stuff early on will have problems long term vs. those who don't have the inclination until they're older...?
 

post #54 of 70

Just before I started grade 1 (at age 6) we were given a little book to complete.  Our parents were supposed to read it to us.  Questions were:

 

Can you:

1.  Dress yourself?

2. Put on your outdoor clothes and boots?

3.  Tie your own shoelaces?

4.  Hang up your clothes, without being told?

5.  Go to the toilet by yourself, flush it, then wash your hands right away?

6. Put your things away when through with them?

7. Wait your turn when others are speaking?

8. Try to catch a large ball?

9. Try to skip rope?

10. Hop on one foot?

11. Put your books and toys away when you are finished?

12. Share things with others?

13. Take care of your clothes and all your own things by being careful with them?

14. Take care of things that belong to other people?

15. Say "Please", "Thank You", and "Excuse Me" or "Pardon Me" when you should?

16. Do things cheerfully to help your Mother and Father when they ask you?

17. Try to be fair when playing with others?

18. Get a number of things when your Mother and Father tell you how many?

    5 things, 3 things, 4 things, 2 things

19. Use scissors and a pencil or crayon carefully?

 

You should know these things before you come to school.

1. Your own first and last name

2. Your birthday and how old you are

3. Your address

4. Your telephone number

5. How many people are in your family.

6. The names of the colours (Mother will help you to colour these balls - red, blue, yellow, green, black, purple, white)

7. The way to school by yourself

8. At least five or six nursery rhymes

9. Three or four children's songs

10.  Two or three stories like The Three Little Pigs

11. That you should greet people by name, saying "Good morning, Mrs. Brown"

12. Which is your right and which is your left hand.

 

At the back of the book is a note for Mother or Father.

Only if your child asks to be shown how to print his or her name should these pages be used.  The children are taught to print at school.  Encourage and praise their early efforts.  Some find printing difficult at first.

 

Is this clear?  We weren't even expected to know how to print our names.

 

I'm sorry, this is long but I couldn't resist.  Everyone needs to remember what the expectations were for kids, not that very long ago.  These children went on to post-secondary education, doctoral degrees, etc.

 

None of what they are pushing on kids before the age of 7 is necessary.  None of it.

 

P.S.  OK, so I'm an older Mom....but not that old. redface.gif

post #55 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by beezer75 View Post
 adds what she wants to add using fingers since she taught that to herself.


Or you could just carry on letting her teach herself as she sees the need. =D

post #56 of 70

i didn't even open this thread earlier, as i thought it wouldn't pertain to me.  OP, i don't consider myself delayed with academics necessarily, but we do not start schooling until my children would be in public school kindergarten.  that's when we register with an association, and i see no need to do anything different up until that point. sure, they were learning, growing, and exploring... but there certainly wasn't an agenda or expectation.  i didn't even consider us homeschooling at that point.  for my daughter, we began homeschooling when she was just a few weeks shy of 6.  for my son, he was 5 1/2 when we began homeschooling.  my daughter still learned most of the things taught in preschool in her early years, but my son learned most of that last year in kindergarten.  he just had no interest in recognizing letters or numbers or writing his own name.  he will be 7 years old in march, and is just learning to read this year (doing wonderfully!).  i don't consider that delayed though, as i didn't learn to read until 1st grade either.  anyway. i totally hear you & support you.  there is no reason you should feel any pressure to have your children doing anything, other than what interest them.  hugs.

post #57 of 70

I didn't read all the responses, so maybe this is being repetitive, but is it really considered delayed if you aren't hard-core teaching your 4 year old? Eeks! When did *that* happen? I'm being serious because I'm really curious.

 

My son is 4.5 - and he does initiate learning on his own, but I don't push a single thing. For example, he just started writing letters (he sees his almost 8 YO sister doing it) by copying what he sees (from a soup can for example). We did allow him to start reading eggs because he was begging for it, and he watches Leap Frog Letter Factory and Word Factory. He does mazes, he likes to help when I cook (and when I mean help I don't mean he's doing math, I mean he dumps flour into the bowl, stirs, etc.) Mostly he likes to build with blocks, play with his train set we just hauled out of storage, draw, draw, draw, play with his sister, etc. I did just buy him a bunch of Klutz books to keep him busy while I do school stuff with her.

 

Things are going well for us. We didn't push anything hard with DD until she was older, so this feels natural. I'm just surprised we might be considered as delayed!

post #58 of 70

We're waldorf, so yeah we delay academics until 5 or 6. DD(5) sort of demands the whole delayed academics, if we push her at all before she's ready she shoots in the other direction before you know what hit you.

post #59 of 70

Here's an interesting article!

 

Research shows no advantage in learning to read from age five

 

Lillian

post #60 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by beezer75 View Post
I know in my heart I am doing the right thing but have a hard time in this early academic oriented society. Anyone else?


Yes.  My oldest is a 7yo boy.  Who is a boy.  He knows his letters, we're working on letter sounds here and there, he recognizes a few sight words (like "construction" and "road work ahead" and "moon" and such - just from him asking and then seeing them over and over while out and about).  No, my 4yo boy doesn't know the entire alphabet.  No, my 4yo doesn't have all his numbers.  But he can help mix up something in the kitchen, help with smaller things around the house, recognize plants like his 7yo brother and more than his 2yo sister, and blah blah blah.  They're freakin' kids.  They'll be proficient at reading and writing soon enough.  Sigh.


I've got worksheets around, and lots of "toys" that are more school-y that they play with (wooden blocks, a shape sorting play clock, a balance scale, tangrams, dry erase boards, etc.), but it's not structured so much.  A little for the 7yo for his and my sanity, but I'm not pushing it *that* much because we butt heads enough.  Besides, it's easier to "teach" him stuff when he's good and ready.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Learning at Home and Beyond
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › Education › Learning at Home and Beyond › Delayed academics support thread