2. What to Do When Your Oldest Is School-Age
When my oldest, Jadon, was four, I also had two younger children.
I didn't want to delay school with Jadon, who was a bookworm before he could speak, so I ended up doing all the reading with Jadon, and made sure my second son, Isaiah, listened, too, while the baby sat on my lap, or slept on my back.
Did Isaiah get much out of that? Who knows? (And is it bad to admit that I didn't actually care?) What I was after was time and connection with me, exposure to vocabulary, enjoyment of illustrations . . . I wanted a Sonlight life together, basically. If I could read to the boys for an hour or two, that was satisfying and good, for all of us.
How did this play out over the next decade?
Really well! After going through both of the Sonlight Preschool programs, I stretched out Sonlight A by reading all sequels of all the books, and, in between, I redid P3/4 and P4/5 several times. Those early programs don't take that long, and I wanted all my children to get all those stories.
My older two sons did the same Sonlight program until 100, when Jadon continued on his own, and I dropped Isaiah back to work through a full D and E by himself in a year, as he had only vague memories of the books at that point, having been on the young end the first time.
Sonlight books are so good, I am happy for my children to reread them. They bear up under repeated readings!
So if you are ready to teach your older, but wonder about adding in a second child . . . you can do it. Start to incorporate reading now, with all your children. A good story is not restricted to only a single age, after all! Just like you might let all your children watch Inside Out, even if a few are older or younger, the stories you read with Sonlight are interesting and exciting for more than a single age.
Okay! Hope that helps!
John and Sarita's oldest daughter
Homeschooling mom to five
P.S. You may have read this quote by C.S. Lewis about rereading books. I love it!
An unliterary man may be defined as one who reads books once only. . . . We do not enjoy a story fully at the first reading. Not till the curiosity, the sheer narrative lust, has been given its sop and laid asleep, are we at leisure to savour the real beauties. Till then, it is like wasting great wine on a ravenous natural thirst which merely wants cold wetness.