I could give you a big long back story - but in a nutshell:
Give me your tips for helping a bouncy child learn to focus on stuff she only half wants to do. She can focus on her interests - it is areas that are not her interests, but both her and I think are important, that are the issues.
I would prefer to discuss this from a relaxed-ecelctic POV.
I found it just as important to actually schedule our physical activities. I had been inclined to "schedule" the academics that I wanted to make sure was fit into the day and let the abundance of hikes, ball playing, swimming etc. just fill in the spaces but that wasn't enough so it helped to be able to say the quicker we finish our math or writing the sooner we can "x" I also limited the academics in the early years and had lots of artsy projects, but if it was nice outdoors we were probably out in it. Also I always did a lot of plant and animal identification so all our outside time had some "science" thrown in. by scheduling it I could also say you know we played outside for three hours for the half and hour of table work we did today. Being able to see how really little time she actually spent on sitting work made her a little more tolerant of it most of the time.
You might read Thomas Armstrong's book In Their Own Way. The book is about teaching children based on Multiple Intelligences theory. A bouncy child would be high on bodily-kinesthetic intelligence and you could reach her by using methods that are good for people that have this kind of intelligence. There are 8 different ways or intelligences to learn and teach. Most people have several intelligences that they are high on and if you use more than one intelligence to teach something difficult the learner is more likely to get it.
Here is a web site with some basic info.
: Grandmother , 3 Adult Sons
I don't know if it will help or not, but DS 7 is very bouncy--and sitting on an exercise ball chair instead of a regular chair seems to help him focus. I've also heard good things about wiggle seats.
Mom to DS(8), DS(6), DD(4), and DS(1). "Kids do as well as they can."
I would keep it brief-- experiencing success in as small a window of time that is practical. For example, have her complete 2 short or 1 long math problem. Then let her go bounce around or switch to the subject of her choice, one she is more focussed on. Do this until she can complete this small chunk easily, then add to it if you'd like her to focus for longer (though you might not have to. And give her fair warning.)
My girls, though not particularly bouncy, have definite bouncy times of day. As a homeschooler you can take advantage of any (slighty?) calmer moments. Create those moments by heading to the park or going for a bike ride, then home for lunch and some (calmer?) focus time. Very brief, of course!
A bit of advice aside from homeschooling, be sure not to make her bounciness into an issue that makes her feel bad about being the way she is. (I'm thinking of the Pooh "Chapter 7 In Which Tigger is Unbounced"!)
Also introducing conscious focusing techniques might not be a bad idea. Yoga, meditation. Our Wilderness Awareness for Kids books advocate a "sit spot" or "secret spot" in the yard that encourages silent observation.
All, of course, in very small chunks of time!
"She is a mermaid, but approach her with caution. Her mind swims at a depth most would drown in."
I have my kids sit on large exercise ball. They seems to love it. They can bounce and balance as they work on their problems. I also paid a lot of attention to their "Study" area. Knowing any place would/could be our study area, creating one area that dedicates as their learning area is important. This learning area would be filled with only thing they use and focus. For an instance, I have my white board, a pointer and art material on the side where I sit, and kids will each have their table. At their violin practice area (which is the other corner of the room) we have music stands, violin stands, a chair (for me to sit), a mirror (to check their own posture),a baton, a tuner, and their practice charts and music posters on a wall. Sometimes, I also spray Aromatherapy (basically a few drops of Essential Oil mixed in distilled water on ourselves to lift/change the mood : )
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