Sort of. Even with a pretty decently planned schedule, with break times already incorporated in, both DS1 and I suffered from major burnout after block 3.
I felt, and still do feel, a little guilty about it. I know it’s all in my own head. He’s still just five. No rush, but it’s hard for me to read all these blogs with these moms and their schedules and curricula and getting all this stuff done and still having more children and blogging. I know it’s a show sometimes. I know different people do different things and that’s okay, but I suffer greatly from the comparison bug and it’s something I have to address within myself repeatedly as I walk this homeschool road.
That being said, I think DS1 is doing fine. We slowly tapered the writing off once he showed he could do it. We went from daily, to every other day, to once a week, to whenever he wanted to write something. Clearly he had the physical skills to do it, and after a while, the repetition only served to bore the ever living snot out of him. Same goes for math and reading, too, really. MUS is still a decent math curriculum in my eyes, but we both ran into a couple of issues with it. 1) the order of the chapters was weird to me and obviously did not flow in a way that really helped DS and 2) DS seems to be mathematically inclined enough that the work because very tedious for him.
Sadly, it took a few weeks for me to realize we didn’t have to follow the chapters exactly, or do the worksheets, or that I could teach my own methods for things and everything would be okay. For instance, when I was in kindergarten and 1st grade, I remember learning my math facts starting with 0 and working sequentially up. Finger counting was okay. DS seems to gravitate towards this as well, and so when MUS would go from learning addition with 0 to (I think) the 9 math facts, and then back down to a smaller number, it seemed strange. He also really, really objected to, when learning 9 addition facts, moving blocks around to make 10 and then adding the remainder, instead of just adding 9 to whatever. That extra step really slowed him down and irritated him. I tried to get him to do the method in the book but finally I realized I really didn’t like it either, and so I’ve stuck to just occasionally making a simple worksheet, but mostly just letting him do his own thing with legos and the manipulatives that came with MUS.
Reading also started to become a struggle. DS complained it was boring and that he hated it, even though I would stop lessons as soon as he started resisting. He’s just not interested in it right now. I also switch from 100 Easy Lessons to Alphaphonics, which I think presents sounds in a more logical way. Even though we only used it a few weeks before we set it aside, I think he appreciated the approach as well, and when he is ready for more formal training, I will use it again.
I’ve felt pretty guilty about dropping all of this, like I said, but my husband does remind me that the whole point of homeschooling is being able to tailor my son’s education to *him*. Sometimes I find it hard to believe that our homeschool will probably end up looking vaaaastly different than what I read about, but then again, maybe people who have homeschools like mine don’t blog because it doesn’t look like we are actually doing anything.
Slightly tangentially, I’ve been reading a bit about different personalities and trying to use that information to help me with my sons. Initially it was all curiosity about myself. I took an MTBI test because I felt like I was insane and weird and got results that were actually really illuminating and helpful, so I encouraged my husband to take a test and also get very interesting and helpful results. I can’t make a five year old take a test, but I can become familiar with certain aspects of personality types that I think explain some of his behaviors and it has put many of my “oh gosh I’m not doing enough” fears at ease. I have a lot to say on that subject, and I’ve already written a whole lot here, so I’ll probably postpone that until I have the energy to write again (I’m nearly 39 weeks pregnant and I haven’t been able to sleep in days), which will probably be in June.