Choose from the Buffet to Meet Your Child's Unique Needs
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Are you stressed out about the amount of time it takes to finish the homeschool work each day? Consider this helpful illustration from one of my favorite video teachers, Evanna Walker. BJU Press Homeschool is like a buffet. It's full of wonderful choices for your child. There are activities for every learning style as well as options for different skill levels. And while you should feel free to pile your plate high with educational goodness, remember that no one ever eats everything on the buffet.

As important as that revelation is, you might still be wondering how exactly to choose what you should be putting on your child's plate. After all, you don't want to cut out anything essential and compro-mise the quality of his education. Think through the following questions to make sure your child is get-ting a balanced diet.

Does my child need this activity?

None of the assignments are busy work. What you need to decide is whether or not your child needs each assignment. Use standardized test scores to identify areas in which your child excels. Reduce the amount of review in those areas and replace some of the assignments with the suggested enrichment activities and extended projects that allow your child to respond to the content in creative ways.

Does my child need additional help?

Remember that you do not need to complete a lesson in every subject every day. If your child needs review or reteaching, slow down and make sure he gets it. Skip the extra projects. Learning is about growth and progress, not about checking off boxes on a to-do list. Extra resources are available if you need to spend more time practicing a skill or concept.

Can I teach the same content differently?

Starting in upper elementary school, many of our courses have frequent quizzes that help your child prepare for the chapter test. If the quizzes discourage your child, print them out, find the answers, and use them to study for the test.

Is this skill covered again in a different part of the curriculum?

Courses often include writing projects that allow your child to put what he knows into use. When my boys have multiple writing assignments at the same time, we often focus on one and skip the others. Just pay attention to what kind of writing practice your child is getting. He needs to learn to write es-says and research reports in science and history and stories, poems, and letters in English.

Does this assignment fit my family's needs today?

My son had a miserable cold this week. His science lesson today was an activity. While he usually would have enjoyed the project and learned from it, he just needed to get done with school and rest. We have done science projects in the past, and we will do plenty more in the future. My son watched the demonstration on the video, and then we skipped the workbook pages for the day.

Overwhelmed mama, be encouraged. You are not expected to do it all. If you try to do every assign-ment, your homeschool days will be long, and your family will be stressed. Instead, learn to approach the buffet with your child's unique dietary needs in mind. You can (and should) customize your child's workload without sacrificing academic excellence.

If you would like help selecting from the resources available to you through BJU Press Homeschool, you may contact one of the experienced consultants at HomeWorks by Precept. These homeschool moms have used the curriculum and can assist you in making great decisions for your family. All you need to do is ask.

Meet the Author

Jennifer Lont - HomeWorks by Precept Consultant


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Mandi Fox lives in south-central Illinois, just southwest of the capital, Springfield. She graduated from Bob Jones University in 1997 with a bachelor’s degree in nursing. She works as an emergency room nurse one day a week and also picks up work at the local Express Cares. She also teaches a variety of certification classes needed for nurses and doctors...
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