07 November 2011

Curriculum choices and the individuality of children

I thought this article was well written and informative as it speaks on curriculum choices and the personalities of our children. (see link below for full article)


When it comes to cooking, it seems that there are two kinds of people: those who follow the recipe exactly and those who tweak it.

Those who tend to stick to the recipe probably like the security of doing what they're told to do. Someone has already figured this out so I don't have to can be a comforting thought. But sometimes the recipe just doesn't fit your situation. Maybe the person who created the recipe has a passion for hot and spicy, while your family prefers mildly spicy. Maybe the recipe says to bake at 450 for 15 minutes, but you know that your oven struggles to keep a constant heat at that high of a temperature.

So most cooks learn to make adjustments. They might reduce the amount of cayenne pepper or leave out the tabasco sauce. They might add more minutes onto the baking time. Whatever adjustments they make, they tweak the recipe to better fit their families and their situations.

Curriculum is like a Recipe

Curriculum is a lot like a recipe. Whoever writes the curriculum is setting forth what he prefers; what worked in his situation. But just because the author presents it a certain way doesn't mean you have to use it exactly as is.

Maybe a certain curriculum moves a little too quickly for your child; you can adjust it to a slower pace. Maybe a curriculum doesn't include enough hands-on activities for your tastes; you can add some. Maybe you like everything about the curriculum except one little part; leave it out. Maybe a particular recommended "ingredient" isn't available in your location; substitute something similar.

Just as people who create recipes are dealing with ingredients, not your family's taste preferences or your finicky oven, so people who write curriculum are dealing with the material, not with your unique child. It's impossible to write a curriculum that will address the specific needs of every single child. That's where you come in.

As the parent-teacher, your focus needs to be on educating your child as a person. In fact, that premise is the foundation on which Charlotte Mason built her whole philosophy.

The central thought, or rather body of though, upon which I found, is the somewhat obvious fact that the child is a person with all the possibilities and powers included in personality.

So don't expect a one-size-fits-all curriculum to suit each unique personality in your family; it won't. But that's the beauty of homeschooling; you can make adjustments. Any time!

You have permission. It's your family. It's your child. You know him better than any curriculum writer ever could.

Teach the child; don't just teach the curriculum. ~full article can be found at Simply Charlotte Mason

This is why I LOVE homeschooling. I have so many different types of learners, personalities, and temperaments that there is NO way I could possibly try a one size fits all approach. Truly each child is different and having the ability to pick and choose what fits each child is key in preparing them for their special and unique walk that they will have to walk in this life. Other wise it's kind of like pushing a square peg into a round whole. It just doesn't work and trying to force upon a child something that 'we think' is a one size fits all curriculum will eventually bring frustration, unhappiness, boredom, etc. for all involved.
101 reasons why I homeschool #75


Mrs. Stam said...

lol I am a major recipe tweaker hehe!!!

and love the way you have presented this topic in the post :-)

Jennifer said...

So, so true. My kids are as different as night and day.

Mom of 12 said...

Thanks for visiting my blog! You asked me about Christmas...we love Christmas at our house and everyone still gives everyone else a gift. We try to encourage the kids to do homemade thoughtful gifts. We also do homemade jammies for Christmas Eve. Every year I say we are going to simplify and every year I remember how much I love spoiling my kids. We try to set a price limit and that helps some. But I still find myself spending at least $100 per child. It's expensive! And I have to help the little ones with their gifts too. What do you do?

Cinnamon said...

Oh this was perfect. So accurate and exactly why we have each child do what fits *them* not one size fits all.

p.s I follow the recipe EXACTLY :-)