I am petrified. There I said it. I have this whole schedule set up and then here come my children with these bright ideas. Spike wants to learn about dinosaurs and Sunshine wants to learn about the tallest people on earth and how girls around the world live. This is not a part of my schedule!!! Didn't they see my nicely worked out schedule that I did for each of them individually in their favorite colors? Didn't they see how I put it all in a table with a detailed description of each topic. I even ordered "What you 1st/4th grader should know". I thought at the most I might have to change to unit studies or something like that.
I have a sneaky feeling that we are leaning toward deschooling/unschooling and eclectic something or other. I don't do well with labels and I hate rules, but I love learning. I know I was being a little dramatic for fun in the beginning of this blog, but I have to admit that I am a little scared. I don't trust my children to just learn things on their own like I do. Afterall, I didn't start doing that until after I was out of school. Yes, I said it. I don't trust them to learn if left to their own devices. I know some of you want to jump on me, but I am new to this. I am learning too. I would never tell them I don't trust them to learn, but I am venting it to you all because I know you love me. LOL Tonight when they told me what they wanted to learn about I paused. Sunshine quickly said,"Well you said we could learn about whatever we wanted and you could just make it fit into all the subjects that we need." Gotta love that young memory retention. NOT! I am going to give it a try. We have 2 years before the North Carolina Department of Education can come out and see what we've been up to so here goes.
I asked the kids what they wanted their screen names to be rather than dd=dear daughter and ds=dear son. So dd will now be known as Sunshine and ds will now be know as Spike. Dh=dear husband will be Big Daddy. Okay, my sister-in-law will love that one. LOL
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Bob Books are the bomb. My son is in first grade and behind, IMO, in reading. He is not behind due to any learning issues. Now that I am his teacher I have figured out why he is so very behind. He was missing all of the foundational knowledge for both reading and writing. He knew all the phonetic sounds, but couldn't put them together. He had no confidence whatsoever, so even when he know a word already he was scared to just take chance and say it. That wouldn't be so bad if it weren't for the fear on his face. There were lots of other problems, but we reviewed the letters and their sounds and started the books. He is on the third one. I am so proud. He reads a new one each day after rereading the one from the day before. Of course we move along as he is able and I get overly excite about anything he reads. He is also able to follow the simple and cute story lines.
I know that I look mildly psychotic, but I haven't been feeling well since about Thursday and haven't had any sleep. So maybe due to lack of sleep I am mildly psychotic. LOL
No seriously. I don't feel well. Feels like my body is fighting the flu or something, but we are making it. I am learning my first lesson that "the show must go on". Dd worked on her own as usual, althought she played dumb about a less than desireable math score on www.time4learning.com. Ds needed some help, and I did so with my head on the kitchen table. LOL He actually ended up doing his math independently too. Dh was pretty helpful in the a.m., because it was taking me a minute to get myself together. I took some melatonin to help me sleep last night and boy did it. Of course there was all the nastiness that goes along with the a.m. when you have a cold anyway that we won't mention.
Okay, I think I am done whining for right now. Thanks for patting me on the back while rolling your eyes heavenward thinking, "these newbies are so wimpy". LOL
What is a homeschool Corner? It's what you use when you don't have a room. LOL We do have a garage and during the summer it seems like a good idea to convert it into a room, but then winter comes. Let me tell ya. It's a beautiful thing to pull into the garage with a trunk full of groceries to unload and not get wet. So until we are able to add another room onto the house we have a homeschool corner.
I have a desk that doubles as a work desk for me and a desk for the children,.Ds is drawn to the kitchen table to play and work, and dd is drawn to my spot on the couch (ugh! I can't have nothing...not eve a spot on the couch. LOL). I finally bought some hanging files for their work. I don't really know how I am going to use it, but it seems like something I will need. It will probably continue to morph like all my other bright ideas. LOL I bought a composition notebook in an effort to journal daily so that I can "look where He brought us from" (old gospel song for those that don't know). We have also been making frequent trips to the library and the kids love it. I do too.
I decided not to give them breaks unless totally necessary until they are done with their work. It seems to work MUCH better. I haven't wanted to choke either of them in two whole days. YAY!!!
Just giving y'all a little glimpse of what goes on with us sometimes. This was an all around good homeschool day. We all liked each other all day. LOL
David doing his new math homework. I found some fact family addition cards on http://www.donnayoung.org/ that have been a big help. I combined them with some beads that we had laying around. He basically builds the equation using beads instead of numbers and the card helps him understand the concept and memorize the equation.
Mari is using http://www.time4learning.com/ for most of her work. What does she do you ask? She does social studies, science, math, language arts, and language extensions (supplements). Right now we are trying doing science for a week and social studies for a week. It is working and she is retaining the information very well.
I know they look like they are miserable, but they really aren't. Trust me. There was a young lady from Mad Science there this week and she was wonderful. They made slime, which we are going to make again at home, because it was the bomb. They also made paper airplanes and talked about the different elements of flight. I wish they would give you an information sheet, because it would make it easier to remember all the cool stuff they teach. Anyway she was the bomb and now dd wants to have a Mad Science party.
Why can't he just SIT DOWN AND BE QUIET?!?!?!?! He has been talking, running, yelling, playing, and jumping for over a week. Yes, I realize that this is natural. I am venting more so than asking a solution. We have a big backyard, and we go to the park and all that but to no avail. He was taking gymnastics and was still jumping around afterwards. Again, I just wanted to vent. Afterall, I am grateful that both my children are able bodied and of sound mind. Some people wish their son could behave like this...I just wanted to vent.
I have revised my schedule for both children thanks to http://donnayoung.org. I will mostly stick with the way I was doing it anyway, but I think that I am going to just incorporate somethings into other subjects. For example, when we study African History we will study the music and art along with it. With my dd, I would love to see her have more of a concentration on art because that is her favorite subject. I haven't gotten to the point, of course, where they are working independently yet. My ds doesn't seem to want to work at all...go figure. I have also added www.time4learning.com which I think is wonderful!!! I really like it, and it is wonderful for beginners with a great price.
I have been trying to post this since last week. I thought it was kind of cool. Anyway, this video is of our crabs fighting over the pink shell. The one in the blue shell was originally in the pink shell, but decided to change to the blue. The green one then decided that he wanted the pink shell, at which time the blue one decided he wanted it back and the fight ensued. I really hope you enjoy it, because I have been praying that this video would upload. LOL
My goal for dd and ds is what is living according to the 4 L's. Live, Love, Laugh, Learn.
Live in the moment. Enjoy where you are right now. Don't worry about what has happened or what will happen. Just be right here right now. That is all God is asking you to handle.
Love deeply. I have prayed to God that he let people feel loved when they are around me. I want my children to learn this too. I am reading a book that is teaching me the 7 points of love which are: Kindness, Patience, Forgiveness, Humility, Courtesy, Generosity, & Honesty. If any of these is missing in a relationship it will be found lacking the fullness of love. We will be working on these constantly and asking in every situation, especially difficult ones, if any of these is missing.
Laugh hard, loud, and often. This is among my favorites because I love to laugh. I think most things are funny. When my husband I get into a heated discussion it always ends in laughter. I love to hear other people laugh especially my husband and children.
This is a birthday party we had for my husband, which is why I have on that outfit. LOL
Learn as much as you can while you can. I have learned that I am an autodidact. I love learning, but I am self taught. I haven't finished my associates degree, because I hate taking classes that I am not interested in. For the sake of finishing what I start I am going to finish it, but I know more about myself now. I know now that I will probably never have a higher degree, but I will always take classes and be self taught. I want my children to grow in their desire to know. I want them to want to know any and everything. I want to stir up that curiosity that has been put into a dormant state by large classroom sizes and one size fits all learning.
Okay, so it was July 1. It was the day that our letter of notification was suppose to go in the mail. This wasn't the last day to mail it, it was the first day. I have had it filled out, enveloped (Is that a word? Spell check didn't catch it so let's go with it), and stamped since at least May. I was working with a client and remembered that it needed to go in the mail. My DH told me that the mailman had already run. I was so upset. After I realize the light weight of the situation, I took a breath slapped myself for being so petty and went on with my day.
I was just so excited. This is the dawning of a new day for us. An opportunity to do my best by my children.
I have decided to try loop scheduling. I chose it because it seems to be something that the kids could follow easily and eventually independently. I also think that it looks really pretty, which seems stupid but I think presentation is everything. I am thinking of getting it laminated so that they can both have their own sheet that can be used with a dry erase marker. I ended up with about 8 subjects, but they are things that will only take as long as the kids take with them. I would like to have about 15-30 minutes per assignment depending on what assigned.
Any input or question y'all have are welcome. I am sure that you all will help me to come up with ways to fine tune or things to consider. I'm just trying to feel my way through this.