Managing math with all of my kids has been my eternal homeschool nemesis. It is such a challenge for me to find the time to work with each child in such a way where they feel confident enough to tackle the concepts on their own. It gets even more challenging with kids moving up into higher maths.
I know how valuable math is on so many levels that I can't imagine not making it a priority in my homeschool. Therefore, I've found several ways to manage math with multiple kids.
This post is sponsored by CTC Math. I received free access to the program and was compensated for my time in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own. See my full disclosure policy for more details!
1. Focus on the Child with the Greatest Need
This is a basic principle of life: the squeaky wheel gets the oil. Sometimes this is a real necessity. Since each child will have different strengths and weaknesses, you don't necessarily need to give them each equal amounts of your time in every subject.
For me, this means that I give all of my math attention to my oldest. He's heading into advanced math, and if I keep up with him, my math knowledge will benefit the younger ones. It might be that you have a different child that needs the most attention. Give yourself the freedom to not give equal attention to every kid all the time.
2. Manage Math For the Rest
Managing is the key word. Sometimes it's easy to want to micromanage everyone's work. The key to successfully managing is to set realistic expectations, give clear instructions, and allow room for failure. Remember that failure is a great opportunity to learn. If you're managing well, you can guide them back on track without too much trouble.
There are a couple of ways to manage math for the rest of your crew:
- Notebooks/spirals - jot down the assignments for each of the kids you're managing in a spiral, and check in at the end of the day or week. You'll still need to grade assignments and manage any weak spots.
- CTCMath Online - With a program like CTC Math, you can manage all of your students from the teacher's portal. Assign tasks and keep up with your student's progress with ease. See when students log in, how long they're online, and how they perform on the exercises. Students receive video instruction and instant feedback on their progress.
CTCMath is a full online math curriculum created by math teacher and homeschool parent Pat Murray. The free trial gives everyone a FREE 4 week trial to the program, no credit card required.
3. Reassess Progress Frequently
Even though you may need to oil the squeaky wheel at times, that wheel (aka needy kid) might not need all of your attention forever. It may just be that they needed your attention to push through a tough concept. Reassess their progress every month or six weeks to ensure they are still the one that needs the most of your attention.
Managing math for multiple kids might just mean that you divide your time as needed between the kids that need you most.
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I'm loving the fact that I can oversee the math of my younger kids while still being able to give individualized attention to the ones that need it.
How do you manage math with multiple kids?