I posted a while ago on the Habit of Attention. Through the reading of Charlotte Mason's Original Homeschooling Series, I learned that we can actually train our children to keep their attention on their work. We do this primarily through short lessons and giving our children an awareness of their need to pay close attention for a short period of time.
Yesterday, I received an email from a homeschooler who implemented this with immediate success. Here is what she wrote:
I just wanted to say THANK YOU for your blogs on the Charlotte Mason philosophy. We have used living books and narration for a while now, but I guess I just kind of skipped over the part about short lessons and the habit of attention. My ds 10 has always struggled with keeping focused on subjects he doesn't enjoy as much, especially math. After your blog I explained to him we were going to do just 15 minutes if he would focus all his attention for that short amount of time. He DID IT! And he has continued to do it the last week and a half. We sometimes do a second 15 segment after other work and he focuses again! I have praised him for his attention and I think he is feeling much more confident and successful in his studies. So I set up a new schedule of short (15 to 20 min. lessons) for our day and we finally are getting to subjects I previously ignored. My ds 7 absolutely loves going through the book Exploring Landscape Art with Children (suprise!). If I had continued to put off these other subjects, I might not ever have discovered some surprising interests in them both. It is exciting to see how much more can actually be accomplished through short lessons-who would have thought?!? It has inspired me to go back and reread Karen Andreola's A Charlotte Mason Companion and I am learning so much more this time around.
Thanks again from a former nagging and begging mother,
Truly, if you find yourself laboring over homeschooling - just give it a try for a week. See if things do not immediately and dramatically improve.