Tuesday, September 6, 2011

our first day

our first day of home schooling. it went along right on schedule. we were all dressed & full of oatmeal by 9 a.m., when we ventured out for our morning walk. the kids decided they wanted to walk down to the park to make observations. we talked about the things we could see, what we were hearing, and how the breeze & the sunshine felt on our skin. we talked about the sweet smells in the air. alia (9) stopped to look at a dead beetle she saw on the ground. she looked at it intently for several minutes (never touching it) while the rest of us waited for her. it was the first really great moment for me in this new way of schooling. i didn't have to rush her for fear that we wouldn't make it to school on time. this was our school! it was ok for her to take the time she needed/wanted to check out something she came across. as we were heading back home, alia said "so far i love home schooling!!"

by the time we got back to the house, it was exactly 9:30 (the time i was planning on being home, but i hadn't brought a watch), which was what i had roughly planned on. the kids set down the items they gathered on our walk, & we sat on the rug in the living room & recited a poem together. then we sat at the table & got started on lessons! this is the part that will have to evolve, it's hard to figure out who to start with, since all three kids are in different grades. luckily, alia's syllabus (she's in 4th grade this year) is directed toward the student, so i was able to just show her what to read. alek & amalie needed a little instruction on what to do.

the only minor issue we had was that alek didn't want to do part of his assignment. his curriculum called for him to draw an illustration of a story i had read to him, which he just plain wasn't interested in doing (even though he LOVES to draw). so i gave him the option of writing a summary of the story instead. his response, "i don't like writing." i really didn't want to get into any sort of argument or power struggle on our first day. so i asked him if he would like to read from one of his reading assignments instead. this he said yes to. so i left it at that. after this week is over, i will decide what we need to do to change things up a bit for him. writing is too important to just neglect entirely, so i'll have to find something that engages him.

as for aven, who is 2, she contentedly sat at the table with the group, and drew pictures for everybody, which she delivered as a crumpled up ball she called "wrapping".

at 11:00 we had a snack, 11:15 we continued with math, 11:45 we had our closing circle time & a story, done by noon! easily covered all lesson material for the day by that time. ate lunch, went to the library, found out our favorite children's librarian home schooled both of her sons! one is now a teacher, the other is in his senior year of college.

for the next 2 days, i have to work in the mornings, so paul is going to be teaching the kids. i'm writing up their lesson plans for him so that hopefully it's smooth sailing. :)

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