A defined space helps your little ones listen better.
Do you have little ones with whom you’re doing school? If so, it really helps to define the space in which they need to sit and listen while you read.
What is a simple defined space for a 2-4 year old?
When my little ones were between the ages of 2-4, I usually had them sit on my lap. Then, I held the Bible in front of us to read the story for Little Hands to Heaven. If you have a child who is a “wild wiggler” and doesn’t sit well on your lap, then move on to my next suggestion!
What can you use as a defined space if you have a “wild wiggler” or multiple little ones?
If you have a “wild wiggler” or multiple little ones, use carpet pieces or large, foam floor puzzle squares to define space instead. These pieces or squares can be used to delineate the spot where each child should sit. This becomes the defined space in which your child needs to remain during the Little Hand’s Bible reading. As you read, hold the book up beside you with the pictures facing your child. Read from the side, so you can show the pictures as you read.
What is a simple defined space for a 5-6 year old?
For my Little Hearts for His Glory kiddos, I move to sitting on the couch. I “anchor” my child beside me with my arm around him/her while I read. If you have two kiddos doing Little Hearts, it works well to anchor one child on either side of you!
Try defining your child’s space today, and see if your reading time goes better.
While these sound like simple suggestions, having defined boundaries for your child during reading time can make a big difference! Try it today, and see what you think!
A Charlotte Mason Moment:
“The child of two should be taught to get and to replace his playthings. Begin early. Let it be a pleasure to him, part of his play, to open his cupboard, and put back the doll or the horse each in its own place. Let him always put away his thing as a matter of course, and it is surprising how soon a habit of order is formed, which will make it pleasant to the child to put away his toys, and irritating to him to see things in the wrong place.”
(Home Education by Charlotte M. Mason Vol. 1, p. 130)
It is possible by a little persistent effort to acquire a desirable habit
Know your goal…exposure or mastery?
As you teach younger children, it helps to remember this is often their first exposure to many concepts. Everything ranging from history to math to reading will be new. So to expect mastery of new concepts, or even terrific retention, at such a young age is a tall order.
How can you help young children be successful with school?
Instead with younger kiddos, strive for the following goals:
- Keep the lessons short.
- Keep the day moving along.
- Keep your expectations in line with your child’s age.
Resist the urge to add extra drill and practice beyond what is in the guide.
Often as parents, we think more practice is better. The Internet makes it easy to add extra practice with little effort. However, if you add too much to the guide, your children may feel their school day is too long. You may also find that the extra practice crowds out time for the rest of the subjects in the guide. There is a careful balance between enough practice and too much! Your Heart of Dakota guide is designed with this careful balance in mind.
Young children make great gains when you least expect it.
Children will make great gains and strides in their younger years. These gains often come unexpectedly after steady progress forward pays off. Take heart even if your little ones don’t seem to be “getting” everything you’d love them to take from the HOD guide. They will surprise you as the year passes in unexpected ways!
Remember to keep lessons short for little ones
Enjoy Your Everyday Heart of Dakota Life