Teaching 2 children with different levels at the same time

by - Friday, March 10, 2017

This is a new challenge for me.

My 6 year old is well behaved during his homeschool, will go according to schedule, and despite his apraxia of speech, we are able to communicate well. He listens and responds and answers when asked a question. He knows his addition, subtraction, can read and write a few basic words (including his first and last name), as well as concepts such as more or less, big or small, push - pull etc.

My 4 year old knows her numbers, letters and shapes, but no concepts. She can write letters and numbers, and her first name. She is a chatterbox (mostly gibberish) and she is living in her own world. She won't sit still during our homeschool, knows no schedules / routines (she's only 4, can't expect much at this age) won't stay quiet or listen during a read-aloud, and I'm having a hard time communicating with her. She knows when I tell her it's time for bed, or "what do you want to eat?", but she won't answer to a question during our homeschool, won't follow simple instructions... I couldn't even potty train her yet.

They are both at a very difficult age for homeschooling. I tried going other ways around it. First I tried getting them to separate rooms and teaching one child at a time, but it's impossible. I feel like I'm a mother goose, because they keep following me around all day. And if they see their sibling getting homeschooled, they want to join in too.

So then I tried homeschooling both, but at their own levels. Then I had a different issue. My daughter would grab my son's worksheets or my son wants to do the simple stuff that his sister is doing. It was chaotic at best.

So now I decided, both will be homeschooled, at the same time, at the exact same level  (at the level of my youngest one) with the exact same materials. You would think that this way should be easier because nobody would get jealous or there would be nothing to fight about.

Even though the situation has improved, I'm still having issues, mostly with my youngest one. Sometimes I can't tell if it's their young age, or if I'm doing something wrong. Either way, I'm not gonna quit. I'm gonna keep trying it this way, maybe my daughter will get used to it at some point or while I teach them, I will figure out a workaround. Because they are only 1 year and 3 months apart, and I have tried everything else. This seems like something that I just have to be patient about.

By the way, if there is any advice you can give me on the matter, I'm happy to listen. How do you homeschool your children when they are at multiple grades? Do you join subjects? Do they get along together?

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