The case for age range on manuals?

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Joined: Thu May 03, 2018 5:44 pm

The case for age range on manuals?

Post by Janphillips » Mon Sep 24, 2018 9:12 pm

I have been wondering about the case for the age ranges on the manuals, especially the minimum age. I have started 2 children with Heart of Dakota. My oldest was barely 5 years old when I started her with Little Hearts and she did fine in all areas even doing all the first grade options except she struggled with phonics. When it was time to move to Beyond she was barely 6 and then Bigger she was barely 7. There seemed to be a big jump from Beyond to Bigger in workload and what seemed before as a small challenge became overwhelming and I started to think maybe she hadn’t developed fast enough to keep up and we slowed down. My next child was eager to start and shined in other settings so I started her in Little Hearts At 4 1/2 years old where she did very well from beginning to end. But in light of my struggles with my older child HOD’s recommendation that age be the biggest consideration in placement has caused me to slow down with my younger as well. I’m not sure if this is the right move since she wasn’t struggling with Little Hearts. I am concerned she wouldn’t enjoy more mature content in Beyond (no picture Bible, analytical questions, grammar) though. I am curious about the thinking behind the age ranges set for the younger manuals in particular to either reinforce my thinking or correct it. Why is the child’s age so important? Why do my children appear to be ready for kindergarten so young, but may not be ready to move up?
Jan Phillips
Married 16 years
Daughter 8 years old - LHFHG, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing
Daughter 6 years old - LHFHG, Beyond
Daughter - 3 years old
Son - 3 years old

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Re: The case for age range on manuals?

Post by daybreaking » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:47 am

Last edited by daybreaking on Wed Sep 26, 2018 10:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

Wife to one amazing husband and mother to two precious blessings from above:
ds18 & dd13

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Re: The case for age range on manuals?

Post by StephanieU » Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:46 am

As for age, Carrie picks books and content based on age. In later guides (Preparing and up), the material could be too graphic for a child below the recommended age for the guide. She even has warnings for kids in the age range that parents might want to be careful with certain topics. Bible study in RtR would be another one that wouldn't necessarily fit for a child below the recommended age. I am even delaying it with my 10yo because she is not ready for it yet and she is in the age range.
Also, it is a matter of how much and what kind of schooling is age appropriate. LHTH through Beyond and light guides, following CM philosophy. Kids younger than the recommended age normally don't have an issue. But, come Bigger, when the work becomes more academic, the amount of work becomes not appropriate for kids below the recommended age. (This isn't something everyone agrees on, but it is a common thought. Kids younger than 7 or 8 need time to play, and learn so much through play!)
Age is the first consideration on the placement chart in my opinion. You do not want to start a child below the recommended age because you want the content to be age appropriate. Once you have narrowed down the guides based on age (child at least at the minumum age), then you look at skills.
Mom to 4
DD (13) MtMM (completed LHFHG, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing, CtC, RtR, and Rev2Rev)
DS (11) RtR (completed LHFHG, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing, and CtC plus some of LHTH)
DD (9) Preparing (completed LHTH, LHFHG, Beyond, and Bigger)

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Re: The case for age range on manuals?

Post by countrymom » Wed Sep 26, 2018 9:41 am

I can't speak for Carrie, but in my mind the age range is very important for the younger guides because like the other poster mentioned, it guides the age of the child when they land in the more advanced guides. I have found with my children that academic skills at the younger ages were poor predictors of academic skills down the road. I started my oldest in LHFHG at 4 1/2 and ended up slowing him down. Could he do it - yes. Down the road a bit, did I feel I wanted him to stay in that track - no (and he is a very good student).
When my boys were younger we went to the library several times a week and I read to them a lot! They loved it and it was as great way to expose them to additional material without it being "school." I think most of us homeschooling mommies (myself very much included!) get caught up in the bandwagon of educational prowess at some time or another. It is hard not to worry if our children are getting "enough" and compare to the Jones. Like another poster mentioned, our young children need to be free to run and play and explore and participate in creative play. These activities are far more important than any educational "seat work" we can give them at that age. Today I have no regrets for slowing things down and if I could do it over again I would just start them both in Little Hearts at age 7 and be done with it. That is how it is turning out anyway since we did not want our oldest to begin high school at the age of young 13.
Wife to J
Big J - LHFHG, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing, CTC, R2R, Rev to Rev, Modern Missions, beginning parts of World Geography
Little J - LHTH, LHFHG, Beyond, Bigger, Preparing, working in CTC

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