When I brought my first baby home from the hospital, I thought, “Now what? What do we do now?”

And that feeling has never completely disappeared.

I still worry that when I have uninterrupted time to be with the kids, I just sit with them. I’m not sure what to do.

Now if I feel like when I’m at a loss, I can assign them homework.

6 replies
  1. Claire
    Claire says:

    Hi Penelope: Since you already know your first grader is ahead of his peers, would he qualify for online classes thru the Center for Talented Youth (http://cty.jhu.edu/ctyonline/admissions.html#GradesK1)?

    My understanding is that the screening process for applicants to the CTY programs involves different tests according to their age that a child psychologist can administer.

    Your question (to yourself) about what to do w/your kids…listening to their questions and helping them to find the answers is a good start. My two are in school, but I imagine this is what un-schooling is mostly about. Most of the time I find my two want more time to be heard (which is exhausting and time-consuming, but ultimately rewarding).

  2. Jana Miller
    Jana Miller says:

    I found reading out loud to my kids…even the older one was a a good activity that I could do with them….even if it was while they were eating. I chose books that would be interesting to all of us. I’m just not one to sit on the floor and play pretend.
    Jana

  3. Paul
    Paul says:

    Why do you need to decide what you do when you have time with them? Let them lead, kids always have something that they want to do. My one year old does, at least.

  4. Zellie
    Zellie says:

    I always felt the same way. When we did an at-home trial teaching program with my son taught him to play, the psychologist/therapist had to tell me how to do “playing” . . . move the truck, say brrrrrrr, etc.

    When they are engaged in a solo activity, it’s fine to let them concentrate and not get involved. If they want or need together time hanging with them, looking at what they see, talking about it is cool.

    Activities like cooking and baking you already know are good. Play dough, legos, tinker toys, lincoln logs, train set. Pretend play! That’s a big one for age 6 if someone can do it.

    We used to set out a few materials in a noticable place that would attract attention, and the kids would gravitate to them and play with them.

    Dress up, act things out. It’s more fun for kids than adults and usually kids do that while adults are doing something else, but with a shortage of children in the area, you may need to step in.

  5. TR
    TR says:

    “Now if I feel like when I’m at a loss, I can assign them homework.”
    LOL I will have to remember that one. My oldest is autistic and is very attached to his mom where I have really struggled to get to a place where it seemed like I was making a solid connection with him. It has taken a lot of work to feel like we actually have bond even though he is like me in many ways.

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