Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Ten things I've learned while doing school with my kids.

...in no particular order...
  1. Our biggest enemy is tiredness, mine particularly. 
  2. Hunger is the next. 
  3. "Do it later" is a better option than pushing them to continue when they've reached their limit. It's not giving in. 
  4. Children really can learn to sing (thanks Simone for this tip, though can't remember where), even in tune with others. There is hope. 
  5. Blocks of twenty minutes or so is a good length for a subject, maybe up to thirty minutes if there's interesting things to do. Then you need to do something else. 
  6. Lots of breaks are helpful, not lazy. 
  7. Children bloom with praise and encouragement. 
  8. They can't do their best work all the time
  9. When there are things to work on, work on one at a time. For example, if handwriting needs work, forget about spelling for a while. And when the handwriting needs *lots* of work; focus on one thing at a time, like no capitals in the middle of words. When that's mastered, then move on to letters being a consistent size. 
  10. Some kids can write forever; some tire after a few sentences. Some think of wonderfully creative expressions at the drop of a hat; some can't come up with a new idea to save their lives. This is a challenge.
...all probably part of the training for real teachers...