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The Teen with Multiple Interests

teen with multiple interests

The Teen with Multiple Interests


Let's suppose your child is the teen with multiple interests - FILLED with activities they just LOVE doing. Suppose your teen seems interested in EVERYTHING and engaged in learning a wide variety of subjects.

Sounds like a dream, doesn't it? I know that some of you are thinking, "I WISH!" (if this is you, check out my How to Create an Extraordinary Activity List for Perfectly Ordinary Teens article). But the truth is that a child with multiple interests is just as challenging as the unmotivated slug. Because you know what? You can't do everything your child wants to do.

You can't fit in everything fun all in one year. You have four years to expose your child to a wide variety of fun activities so that when they become an adult, they can choose WHICH of the fun things is the most fun and then determine possible career goals.

The first thing you need to do is realize you can't do it all.

The second thing you need to do is realize that your child is in charge of their interests, not you.

Keep the big picture in mind and it will seem less complicated. You need to provide the academics your child needs, that's true. However, it's possible to provide these academics, and provide them WELL, within a reasonable amount of time each day. It's also true that you can provide a high quality high school education and work on a 4 day schedule, or a one-day-lighter schedule. So as you are looking at your high school plan, think about which day might be the "light day" when you just do math, science, and foreign language, and then allow your child the rest of the day to pursue interest areas.

Here is how to break it down, so it will all happen, both the academics AND the interests.

You are in charge of:
1. Teaching core classes in a way that gives maximum free time
2. Scooping up the natural learning your child is doing based on fun interests
3. Grouping those interests together into affinity groups called classes
3. Avoiding turning interests into school - instead, allow them to remain fun activities.


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Comments 4

Guest - Amanda on Sunday, 15 May 2016 17:05

I have a son like this, but I was eager to keep good records for his first year of high school and turned his interests into scheduled classes, leaving him very little free time, and he became burnt out and it sucked the joy out of his hobbies. I guess next year I need to schedule fewer core classes so he has free time, but I have a hard time letting go of the controls and trusting him to use his time wisely.

I have a son like this, but I was eager to keep good records for his first year of high school and turned his interests into scheduled classes, leaving him very little free time, and he became burnt out and it sucked the joy out of his hobbies. I guess next year I need to schedule fewer core classes so he has free time, but I have a hard time letting go of the controls and trusting him to use his time wisely.
Guest - Assistant to The HomeScholar on Monday, 16 May 2016 16:16

Dear Amanda,
That's a delicate balance---and so difficult to navigate sometimes! I have confidence that you will figure out the precise balance for your son, because you care more than anyone! I think you might find one of Lee's Coffee Break Books helpful in this: Creating Homeschool Balance: Find Harmony Between Type A and Type Zzz... It's available in Kindle format or Paper Back.
Robin
Assistant to The HomeScholar

Dear Amanda, That's a delicate balance---and so difficult to navigate sometimes! I have confidence that you will figure out the precise balance for your son, because you care more than anyone! I think you might find one of Lee's Coffee Break Books helpful in this: Creating Homeschool Balance: Find Harmony Between Type A and Type Zzz... It's available in Kindle format or Paper Back. Robin Assistant to The HomeScholar
Guest - Karen on Friday, 06 May 2016 20:25

I like what you are saying here! Can you give us an example of how to integrate the academics and the interests into "school"...let's say the student loves horses, programming and art.

I like what you are saying here! Can you give us an example of how to integrate the academics and the interests into "school"...let's say the student loves horses, programming and art.
Guest - Assistant to The HomeScholar on Tuesday, 10 May 2016 15:08

Hi Karen!
You can start collecting credits for their "fun" pursuits! Lee calls it "Delight Directed Learning" and you can read more about that here: http://www.thehomescholar.com/delight-directed-learning.php
Blessings,
Robin
Assistant to The HomeScholar

Hi Karen! You can start collecting credits for their "fun" pursuits! Lee calls it "Delight Directed Learning" and you can read more about that here: http://www.thehomescholar.com/delight-directed-learning.php Blessings, Robin Assistant to The HomeScholar
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