No, that's not what this post is about. It's about my independent learners.
We started school again after a three-week break. The beauty of homeschooling is that when all the schools are closed for a snow day, we can still have school--and some of my kids don't even know that everyone else is having an extended vacation due to the weather. The ones who do know, don't even mind doing school because they are so independent. They know what they have to accomplish before our co-op meets on Friday, and they know they don't have time to take the day off.
All THREE of my older kids now plan their own work every week. A couple of weeks before break, Kelton asked if he could take over filling out his weekly schedule like the big kids do. Of course I told him he could try. I reminded him on Saturday that we need to plan his week, and he informed me that his chart was already filled out and that he knew exactly what he needed to do. I had him bring me his planner today, and sure enough, it was all planned out. He did an awesome job!!! He has a study space in the basement, and he works diligently on his school work without direct supervision. This is such a change from two years ago when I had to literally sit next to him in order to get him to do anything!!!
Annika also like to work independently. She knows what she needs to do, and gets up early to get it done. She prefers to work independently, but she likes to have her stuff spread all over the living room couches and floors. She doesn't want my help, but she doesn't want to be alone.
Kristina, my littlest, is also now trying to work independently. She sat at the kitchen counter this morning and worked in her math book. She had to write the numbers from 1 to 100, skip count by 10s to 100, and solve 4 addition problems. When she was about halfway through writing the numbers, I asked her a conversational question. She answered the question, the added, "Can you please not talk to me right now? I am trying to focus on my math."
For copywork, I had Kristina write the golden rule, while I helped Connelly make fudge for her science fair project. A few minutes later, Kristina appeared in the kitchen. I told her to go back and work on her writing, but she had already finished!!! She sat and focused on her writing and completed it quickly. This would not have been possible a few months ago when I still had to hold her hand to help her write, and give her constant reminders to focus on her work. Kristina also worked independently to complete a few pages in her phonics book. The only assignment she needed help with was reading two chapters aloud from a Magic Tree House book--and that's only because she was required to read TO somebody.
So, once again I'm working myself out of a job. I love the hands-on aspects of teaching. I loved teaching Kristina to read and count. I love little kid school time--but I do have to admit, this independent learning stage is pretty nice too. It even gives me more time to study the things I want to learn.