Homeschooling: The Early Years

We have been homeschooling our older son, Dagon, off and on for the last 6 years. His brother, Ireah, is kindergarten age this year and is receiving Applied Behavior Analysis therapy from Crystal’s Behavior Solutions at home. The Housworth Homeschool is a 320+ day per year operation with a belief that doing a little nearly every day is best for both child and parent. More recently, the parents have been relying on nannies and tutors to implement the homeschooling routine. But, in the early years when I was doing more of the homeschooling myself, the only way I could work it into my day was to limit the time it took each day. In the very early years, kindergarten and first grade, the emphasis is on reading, handwriting, and mathematics. As the children enter the upper elementary ages, more subjects are added and the children are expected to take more responsibility for doing their schoolwork. Our children, like all children only perhaps a little more so, have their own unique areas of need. Dagon’s handwriting is illegible most of the time, so we have started a keyboarding course for him. Both children seem to delight in doing mathematics incorrectly for the sake of their two mathematician parents.

A page from the Kindergarten Diary I created is available here:

http://elizabethhousworth.com/Homeschooling/Kindergarten.pdf

A month from Dagon’s Fifth Grade Planner is available here:

http://elizabethhousworth.com/Homeschooling/Calendar_2014_01.pdf

While it looks like Dagon can earn more than the recommended limit of 2 hours a day of electronics time, in practice, he most often spends 2 hours or less on electronics time. We keep him busy! Besides schoolwork, he has activities with local homeschooled children through the secular homeschool association, he has activities as the YMCA, and one of his nannies is going to get him to participate in making meals for homeless persons starting in January.

Both documents were created using the word processing program LaTeX. The raw code is available here:

http://elizabethhousworth.com/Homeschooling/Kindergarten.tex
http://elizabethhousworth.com/Homeschooling/Calendar_2014_01.tex

LaTeX and the more basic TeX software are freely available powerful word processing programs:

http://miktex.org/download

Some variant of TeX is used by almost all mathematicians to type technical papers. It is used in many other technical fields as well. There are online tutorials describing features of TeX/LaTeX:

http://www.tug.org/twg/mactex/tutorials/ltxprimer-1.0.pdf

http://www.maths.tcd.ie/~dwilkins/LaTeXPrimer/

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