This may be random, rambling thoughts, but I’d appreciate some input 🙂
DD is 5, with ASD. She’s high functioning, very smart, naturally gifted with math, struggles more on the language end of things. We’re actually just finishing up speech assessments, but we do know that she does have some speech delay, mild, but definitely something we’re going to need to work on. We’re also going to be doing some listening therapy, and working on social skills/pragmatics, as that is a problem area. Developmentally (emotionally/socially) she is delayed roughly 2 years per her psychological testing last year. I find she’s in a hard stage – she’s delayed enough socially that it’s becoming apparent when she’s with peers. She doesn’t necessarily notice the difference, but other kids do. And, unfortunately, she understands perfectly well when they’re making fun of her or saying mean things. She also has quite a medical history with some ongoing issues for which she was recently hospitalized and now we’re about to start the testing process. So… there’s a lot going on.
So, I guess what I’m wondering is… what do we focus on this year?
We have always homeschooled our other child in a very traditional manner, but over the years, I’ve grown more and more attracted to the “later is better” philosophy. I’ve been attracted to the CM approach, as well as Waldorf. In my heart, I really think I want to take this year and focus on her developmental needs – speech and social therapy. I want to continue to develop her enjoyment of reading. In Waldorf-fashion, she LOVES when we read a story, and then draw a picture together about what we read, and then together we come up with a sentence about it. I write it out and she copies it.
I want her to become familiar with our faith and the Bible, too. More than anything, for our homeschool, I desire for it to center around God, I want to read Bible stories and sing hymns. I want to go on nature walks. Listen to music. Look at art. Do art. Cook together. Read stories together snuggled up on the couch. But I don’t want to do phonics. Or heavy math.
Is that so bad? Is it really that damaging to delay phonics and reading until she’s 6? I guess in a way, since we have a few teachers in our family, I feel like they expect us to keep up with the public system.
Anyways, just looking for thoughts .HollySParticipant
I think that sounds like a very enriching year! If you wait on math and phonics until she’s 6, she’ll pick it up very quickly. We’ve used a variety of math programs and they all repeat the Kindergarten material in 1st grade…you can even start her with a 1st grade book next year.
For phonics, my oldest was still learning letter sounds at 5.5 years old and started actual reading instruction at 6. I think she would have benefited from waiting a bit longer even. I was feeling pressured at the time from people around us who were convinced she was “behind”. I think she would have picked up on reading even faster (and with less stress) if we’d just waited a bit longer on reading instruction. She is now 13 and an excellent reader. A couple days ago she complained about a free read being too easy…she said she likes more challenging books. lolpsreitmomParticipant
My daughter, who is now 12, has struggled since kindergarten. I did a little work with her when she was 5, but there was not a lot of progress. She also has multiple issues, which I know include dyslexia and a math deficit. She also has some language processing difficulties, although I won’t know until Monday what they actually are. I finally had her tested, Monday this week, so Monday next I will get the feedback.
I put her in a private school when she was 6, but she actually had to be in kindergarten there. At that point, I didn’t know how to help her. But, as that year went on, I knew going to school was not the answer. I brought her back home at 7 for 1st grade. I was doing some phonics with her then, but her reading took several years to really improve.
I said all that to encourage you to do what you feel is best for your daughter. If she is not ready for phonics, by all means wait. I wish I would have had my daughter tested sooner, then I would have known better how to teach her. I think the things you have listed for her are great. I just kept pushing the academics, when doing more life skills when she was young would have benefited her more than ‘following the norm’ for school. My daughter loves to be read to and loves to listen to audio books. I think that would be a great start for your daughter, rather than pushing her to actually read right now. I think your plan is just fine.
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