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This is a response to Linda who is struggling with putting together her own curriculum. I was there two years ago (which is when I read first Teaching the Trivium: Christian Homeschooling in a Classical Style).
I was using a very structured curriculum with my then 6 and 5-year- olds. I was trying to push all of the school subjects that I thought were best. After I read your book, I then started to adjust slowly. I cut out math first (my kids were so thankful). I stopped doing any math that included writing on paper. This was the best decision I have ever made. I was thinking about starting Saxon Math 6/5 this year with my 8-year-old (she passed the test for Saxon Math 5/4 without any formal math), but I will be taking Laurie’s advice and wait a bit longer.
I focused on teaching the girls to read (using Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons) and also to have great handwriting, using Handwriting Without Tears. My oldest is now reading at a 4th grade level so she reads anything I give her. My 7-year-old is still in a basic phonics reader (she is a late bloomer).
The next thing I can’t encourage enough is exposing them to different languages. This is the time. We have chosen this as our main focus. We sing our ABC’s in English, Greek and Hebrew daily. My 3-year-old can almost say all three by himself. We practice our Latin prayers and vocabulary, too.
So, be of good courage. You can do it. I used to like homeschooling — now I love it. I never thought I would enjoy this as much or more than my children. My best advice is to RELAX and start slowly.