My Fitness

Monday, March 20, 2017

bragging on my son

Let me tell you about this amazing young man, Caleb. He's an inward thinker. He's really goofy. He likes being around other people but after a couple of hours he needs seclusion to recharge. He loves video games and does not really like school. But he's really good at schoolwork! Like, REALLY good.

He went to public school from August to December. Admittedly, his school was pretty bad, his teacher was pretty bad, and the rest of the faculty there was hit or miss. My son would bring home 50% on his mathwork. I knew that was not right for someone of his intelligence level. But the teacher couldn't be bothered - she did have 20 other students that needed her attention. Whenever he would get home we would spend another hour or two going over what they were supposed to have learned that day. I thought it was ridiculous that I had to teach him on top of sending him to school.

On the first day of Christmas break I started homeschooling him. We have been using the computer-based curriculum Time4Learning. When we started I was hoping that a computer based curriculum would be able to hold his attention better because he likes computers. And I was right. One time he got a 50% and I asked him why. He said he didn't know which one was the answer. I explained that you have to read the question, think of the answer, and then pick which option matches your answer. He says, "oh" and then got a 100%. Turns out that no one explained how multiple choice questions work to him before then. #PublicSchoolFail

Over the rest of the break he kept flourishing. His behavior was getting better and better. My other children loved having him back home. His grades were excellent. So we kept him home in the Spring Semester. I started him at the beginning of the school year at Christmas.

Get this:

He will be completely finished with first grade in the next day or so...depending on how much he drags his feet. (Those last couple assignments get tedious for a six year old.) It's March 20. He finished an entire grade in 3 months! #HomeSchoolSuccess

I am so pleased with him. He makes me so happy. He is such a hard worker. Even though something is hard and he doesn't like it, he still does it. I don't let him play video games until his school work is done for the day. He only has a little amount of time he's allowed to play and when the time is up, he can do the next day's assignment early if he so chooses...he's never done that, btw.

So since some of you reading this can't help being negative I'll address some of your responses before you write them.
You may be thinking "well, Time4Learning isn't very hard. The Public School has harder material." No. That's not true. Sure, think whatever you want. I saw the materials Caleb came home with. I couldn't believe how simple the materials were.

"Time4Learning is easy." Caleb thinks it is hard. It adequately challenges and teaches. He knows the material now which is the goal so I don't care how "easy" or "hard" a program is as long as my son knows the materials.

"That much time on a computer is bad for kids. I read a story of a kid DYING because he did school on the computer." There's always that mom, isn't there? I'm sure I'll notice my son's failing health long before he dies. Technology is the path of the future, we'd be fools to not use a computer on a daily basis.

"What about penmanship?" Don't worry, we still use Spelling-You-See. Also, he's doing great with that. He is not almost done there because I forgot about it for TWO MONTHS! During that two month period I was having him write various things and it was when I thought, "Why don't have a curriculum doing this for me?" That I remembered my old purchase.

For science we had a subscription to Magic School Bus monthly mailers, but we only have one month left. Time4Learning does have a science curriculum  but it is really basic. Turns out that at this level all science curriculums are pretty basic. I guess I have high standards having majored in biology. I'm hoping to get a microscope and go through my own ideas. And also we have some science museums that we can becomes yearly members. Once the kids get a bit older then we can have some real science fun. I still have a bunch of my college science supplies.

"I would never let my kids have video games as a reward. Don't you know kids shouldn't be playing that much on screens?" I know! I am the worst! How dare I let my kid have fun in the way he chooses...Excuse my sarcasm. I don't want my kid turning out like your kid, so we're good. If God wanted you to parent my kid He would have given you my child, but he didn't. My son learned how to correctly read a map because of a video game. He learned budgeting, spacial awareness, strategy, and also gets reading practice and addition/subtraction practice. The best part is that he doesn't even realize that's what's going on. It's "real world" application of his schoolwork. I've seen his game playing ability increase as his schoolwork ability increases. He's reading and planning ahead based on concepts he learned in school.

So, if you have real questions and not any snarky attempts at masking your jealousy as you try to burst my bubble, feel free to ask. Every parent will have to find what works with their child. Every child is different. You have to figure out what style, setting, and curriculum works for both of you. Maybe Public is best for you. Good for you. It was terrible for us. Maybe you hate computers, well how are you reading this then? Keep your fake concern, send your genuine questions.

I don't have any arms!
Zoë helps!

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