Joyfully Homeschool Multi-Level Children
When people ask me what I love the most about homeschooling, I can say that teaching my children who are in different grade levels, at once, is one of my favorite privileges as a homeschool mom. For many homeschooling families, this can be the most difficult part. If you find it challenging and overwhelming to teach children at multi-grade levels, you are not alone. Do not lose hope; it is possible for you to successfully teach multiple levels.
Different strategies can be adopted to deal with multiple grade levels. Our main goal is to ensure that everyone can work at their own pace and that they will successfully learn, understand, and apply the lessons in their lives as individuals. Here are some useful approaches that have our family’s seal of approval:
- SET BASIC RULES. When we started to homeschool, we discussed and agreed on this. Everyone should observe these rules. Write them down, or print them out, and post them where everyone can see them.
- DEVELOP THE VALUE OF HONESTY. I allow my children to check their own work using the Teacher’s Manual. They personally record their scores based on their category. This trains them to be honest in monitoring their own progress and personally understand their need for improvement.
- CREATE SCHEDULES. I allow my children to develop their own weekly schedule, but I make sure that the schedule they create is aligned with their individual and groupwork requirements.
- SPEND INDIVIDUAL TIME WITH EACH STUDENT. When you work with one child, the other children can work independently. Whenever they need help, my children will ask me to sit down and discuss the topic to help them gain a better understanding of it.
- BE FLEXIBLE. There are times when our schedules do not run smoothly, so we have to be flexible. As time goes by and life happens, you may have to adjust your schedule.
- MAP OUT YOUR CURRICULUM. Get an overview of the topics for the year per subject, per student. Break down your yearly goals into quarterly, monthly, weekly, and daily goals to achieve your overall plan.
- ALLOW YOUR CHILDREN TO WORK INDEPENDENTLY. It gives the student the opportunity to work at their own pace and allows them to develop organizational skills and manage their own learning.
- USE DAILY LIFE EXPERIENCES AS TEACHING OPPORTUNITIES: As we always say, “the world is our classroom.” When they discover and learn new things from their daily experiences with the family, these are vital lessons that bind and strengthen their relationships. Example: Cooking meals together can be applied to the subjects Maths, Science, and Home Economics.
- ALWAYS BE AVAILABLE. Be available to facilitate their learning. Make sure you are always willing to help them. When there are times that I do not know the answer, I will be honest to tell them we will figure out the answers together.
Homeschooling different grade levels at once with different personalities can be overwhelming but with planning and support from your homeschool provider, a learn group, and other homeschooling families, you can still homeschool multi-level students with a joyful heart. To wrap all things up, I can truly say that when God calls you to complete the task, He will precisely equip you with the tools required for this assignment. He will give you the strength to do His Will for your family.