Beginning with Older Children

by | Homeschooling | 2 comments

Hello, I am a homeschool mom of 7 children, with a babe on the way. My oldest is 12 and in 7th grade. I also have children aged 9, 8, 7, 5, 3, and 2 years old. I looked into and actually tried to switch over to the Trivium method two years ago, but ended up chickening out because I was too dependent on the Scope and Sequence, a.k.a. fill the bucket, method. I am truly past all of that now. I think trying to fill 7 buckets at once taught me a lesson in futility. My younger children are all going with the flow. They are ecstatic that they don’t have to do math for another year or two. It is my oldest that I have some apprehensions about. She is 12, bright for her age (relatively speaking, of course), reads voraciously, and is very stuck on the textbook/workbook method. She has never been thoroughly taught all aspects of grammar because we would get started in a workbook and I get so disgusted at the fill-in-the-blanks tediousness of it that we would quit. She writes well, despite not being schooled in proper grammar. She has your typical math anxiety. She doesn’t hate it, but doesn’t like it. Math is one area I truly wish I would have known about backing off of seven years ago. She used to despise it, but I switched from Saxon to Bob Jones, and she likes it much better this year. She uses BJU texts and workbook for history, which she loves. I just need some helpful hints in how to implement the Trivium-style into her curriculum. I truly believe it is the best, and I feel so terrible because I feel as if I’ve short changed her by not starting earlier. Now she seems set in her ways, but I truly want her to know HOW to think, not just to be a walking mini-encyclopedia. I think I have my own doubts about being able to pull this off, too. I sometime think it is impossible to give everyone everything they need, on their own individual level. Tracy

Some suggestions:
1. The Mystery of History is, in my opinion, a good history curriculum for busy moms with several young children. There are tests and other worksheets for those who need that sort of thing, or they can be left out if you don’t like them. For those who want to put to use what they have learned, there are different levels of projects (easy, moderately hard, and difficult) after each lesson. There is also plenty of timeline and geography work.

2. Projects are a good way of leading the student out of the box of a workbook/textbook mode of learning. Start with a project that is especially interesting to the student, and walk him through the whole process of finding a topic and developing the project, if needed. Students who only feel comfortable doing school by using fill-in-the-blank workbooks and resist any other method of learning will need help developing their creativity. You will need to prime the pump and temporarily do the thinking for them in some cases.

3. The Fallacy Detective will help ease you into the study of logic and help wean the student away from exclusively textbook type learning.


  1. Kendra


    May I humbly recommend to you? The site and blog are written just for moms like you, plus I recently reviewed The Mystery of History and you can see how it’s been a blessing in our home with 8 children.


  2. tereza crump AKA MyTreasuredCreations

    I am so glad God has led me here!! This was truly Godsend. so much good needed information. Will be back to read more. thanks 🙂


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