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age 12, grade 7, lost interest in some subjects
Tagged: fun, Grammar, literature, lost interest, science, Sonlight
- This topic has 4 replies, 2 voices, and was last updated 13 years, 7 months ago by CindyS.
HSing 3 kiddos: ages 12, 9, 7
DS 12 – bright kid, learning has always come easy for him; flexible kid in general, easy to help learn; just beginning our 2nd semester of HSing. He’s loving it, in general, but seems to not be having much “fun” anymore.
-he is not liking his Apologia Science (General Science). He says the reading is boring, he’s already learned this stuff in PS, and thinks there are too many experiments and the write-ups are unnecessary.
-Literature is not going well either – he’s read Little Britches, Freckles, and Boyhood & Beyond – he reads them quickly, can narrate or write a paper about them beautifully, but he doesn’t enjoy them. In his spare time, he’s reading his fiction stories for the 4th or 5th time (Eragon, Harry Potter, etc.)
-Grammar – he’s a wonderful writer and writes stories on the computer in his spare time for fun; but grammar is like pulling out his teeth. We’re using Analytical Grammar. He knows the basics of grammar fine, but it gets so technical with things like Pronouns where there is 12 words to label in one sentence. Is this really necessary?
He is “able” to do these subjects okay, I just wish he could enjoy them more. My whole philosophy with HSing was that “there are other ways to learn besides the boring textbook-workbook style” and here I am using these. Am I going about them wrong? When he enjoys what he is doing, he does it independently, in a timely manner, and things go smoothly. When he doesn’t enjoy it, he wastes time, needs prompting, needs me to talk about it with him (he’s my social one), etc. I don’t have time to do this much with him and help my other two kids also.
Sorry, don’t mean to whine so much. I just don’t like it when everyone is unhappy for a while (including me).
I just had a couple of thoughts as I read your post. One was that, since this homeschooling business is new to him, perhaps the novelty has worn off and now he is testing your mettle just a bit. I know that children coming out of public school say that they realize hs’ing is not all fun and games, but I do think there is often a hidden thought in there that says, “But it probably is.” Then reality hits. As a matter of fact, we’ve always hs’ed and I think we go through the same thing annually.
The other thing that I wondered about was that perhaps he needs more challenge. He seems capable of so much. What a blessing he must be to you! You may want to consider allowing him to pursue some research on his own, of his own choosing. The topic does not matter; just so long as he chooses it and it is something that he is interested in. For instance, the first project my oldest chose was skateboarding and I thought, “Huh?!” But the amount of research skills and writing skills he came away with was tremendous. I keep a time in our schedule for their own research (30-45 min.). The only caveat I have is that there needs to be something being produced – always something written, a testimony, and a hands-on project if applicable and it needs to have a start/end time. Otherwise, for us, it turns into so much dawdling on the computer. I prefer a trip to the library for books first, too. Not to belabor the point, it has just been a wonderful addition to our own homeschool for children that just need a little more umph in their day.
I side with your son that the Apologia is dry. You could skip it; especially if you think he already knows it. Referring to the above suggestion, you could come up with his own science for the year based on his interests. Then you could toss in some living books to cover some of the stuff you want him to know now. The rigors of highschool are quickly approaching and if we can help them learn to enjoy learning now, it will go so much easier later. Also, and most importantly, you will want to pray that God will show you where your son is now and where he is going so that your education of him is tailor-made for him.
As for grammar. I also agree with your son that AG is difficult. Maybe it’s just a timing thing. Some on this board have tried the Queen’s books and it seems like they are very popular.
One last thought from my own failures, and I’ll quit. With one of our children we got into a cycle of him complaining and mom then rushing to change the curriculum. That’s just a warning. It taught all kinds of bad character and took lots of time to remedy once I realized what was going on. It doesn’t help that there are a bazillion curriculums on the market now, either. You are right, life is not all fun and games and some things we just need to buck up and do. However, if you and your husband think something needs to change, then by all means change it.
thank you, Cindy. That was very helpful!
I like the idea of challenging him more and giving him time for his own research project. He would really enjoy that. And yes, he truly is a joy and blessing to work with. He often times helps the younger two see a new perspective if they are frustrated too.
I DO feel that I have to be careful about running out and getting a different curriculum when something goes wrong or they complain, so I’m watching that (and myself).
Thanks for the suggestions with Apologia and AG – I will look at some options and decide if we need to just keep going forward or make some changes. He used to just LOVE science, so I’m wondering if skipping a few areas or adding in living bks, etc. might really add the spice he needs.
Thanks so much! This was helpful and productive for me!
I just did a search on this forum for Apologia general science and learned about “Learn ‘N Folders” by Live and Learn Press. They complement the Apologia texts and are basically a pre-designed lapbook to assist. They have fun ways to write out the “on your own” answers and fold-up things for study guides, prior to the test. Ah, I think this will help!
We used the Learn ‘n Folders. They were not very helpful to us, but very adorable. Just be careful to not let them bog you down. Illustrating some of the anwers may help. Actually, 7th grade might just be more of the target age for this sort of product. My younger ones (elem.) could not keep up with the writing and my older ones (hs) thought it was sort of juvenile. Not sure if you saw this comment on another thread (it’s there somewhere), but I just wanted to give you a heads up.
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