Monday’s Musings from the Porch Swing

My oldest daughter had very little interest in sewing when she was younger.  I taught her how to use the sewing machine, to do some simple stitches, and she helped with some very simple sewing.  She wasn’t interested in much more though.  Last night she sat across the table from me and asked me how to cut out a pattern for a dress she wants me to make.  I am hoping as I get more into the process she will want to participate further. My younger daughter on the other hand is begging to learn to read and play the piano.

The subject matter I wanted to talk about today is children, their learning and your timing.  I’ve graduated my oldest daughter from homeschooling after teaching her since three-quarters of the way through first grade and am now homeschooling my younger daughter.  Over the years I’ve learned something very important:  sometimes when a child is struggling with something that is necessary for them to learn it is helpful to put it aside for a few days or more.  When you pick it back up they may still not get it and it may need to be set aside for a little more time.  Eventually they will surprise you and get it and go sailing along better than you thought possible.  If we continue trying day in and day out when their minds are not ready to grasp the lesson at hand all that will happen is frustration on the part of both parent and child.  On the other hand if it something they don’t have to learn put it aside and only mention it occasionally; if it is something they need in their lives they will ask for help learning it sooner or later.   The other situation you may run into is that of a child asking, sometimes begging, to learn something that you thought would be waiting till a year or so down the road; like my daughter wanting to learn to read and play piano.  I didn’t think she would be reading for another year and I thought the piano playing would be several more years away.  When a child ask to do something, I think they are at least ready to begin with some simple lessons if not more, so I begin the lessons. Children know more than we give them credit for.  I will know from how well she handles the first couple of lessons as to how fast or slow I will need to go.

I did not come to my philosophy of home education on my on  I have prayed, talked with my husband and  read several homeschool books.  If you are homeschooling or just beginning to homeschool don’t take my word for how you should teach your children.  God blessed us with our children and will guide us on how we should teach them if we only ask Him.



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