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The question I have concerns my nieces, I have one in 4th grade which isn’t a problem because my son is in the 4th grade. However my other niece is in 8th, this is the 1st year that I will have all the kids. I am having a difficult time finding material that I can teach to all the kids instead of separate material for the 8th grader.. I know that in some subject I will have to teach different material such as Math and English.. I am just wondering what others have done with kids who are 4 years apart. What is the easiest way to teach? Any help is wonderful.
You can get some good ideas from the curriculum guide on this site. Some also use Truthquest to get multi-level ideas for history. You can select a couple of history and literature books to read together as a family. Then the children will each have an age appropriate assignment to do plus you may choose to read a little extra aloud with the youngest ones. Bible, music appreciation, composer/artist studies, poetry, logic (with Fallacy Detective, for instance), map drills, geography, art, and hymn studies are all subjects to easily teach in a cohesive manner unless there is a need to individualize through necessity or the appeal of a child. Again, it is the follow-up assignment that often differentiates the grades, not necessarily the material covered.
Science can also be taught as a group (I forgot to mention Nature Study above, by the way). One way would be to get a text and read it with the children, adding in explanations as necessary. If you are quite industrious, Lifetime Books and Gifts has, on their website, a list of resources by creation day. Also, I do believe that Tapestry of Grace had, at one time on their website, a way to make Apologia’s Physical Science multi-level. I for one, teach science separately 🙂 because I am not that industrious. However, you could read aloud some to them all; perhaps a biography or one of the Masters Books.
I do hope this was helpful versus burdensome!
I use a similar method with my children to what Cindy described above. We have history read-aloud together, then each child has their own individual age appropriate reading to do separately. They create notebook pages about what they have learned which they complete according to their ability. For example, my 2nd grader may write a caption for a picture and copy a narration she has already given to me orally, my 4th grader will write a paragraph about the same picture, while my 6th and 7th graders will write a page or more narration about their reading. In this way they are all responding on their level, according to their abilities, but covering the same time period and basic content.
For science, we have both family and individual science. We are reading Apologia’s Zoology 1 together, but each child has another science reading to do during the week too on their own topic. My 7th grader is doing Apologia’s General Science while the others are reading various other science books.
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