December 9, 2008
I am so proud of myself. I actually followed a loose school routine with my kids for
2 whole 1.5 months. Now that I have children in "grades" 4, 2 and kindergarten I figured it was about time to be more focused in basic three R's skill building. And equally important to develop regular study habits and routines. So 4 mornings a week we do chores, read together and practice handwriting. My 9 year old also works on math and dictation/vocabulary/spelling.
You'd think 3 hours of structure, only 45 minutes or so actual sit down, pen on paper type stuff wouldn't be difficult. Ha! This has not been easy for me. I love routines in theory but doing them requires discipline. A character trait we're all working on together. But now it's December, Christmas is around the corner and it's time for a break. Yee-haw.
Last Thursday was our last scheduled day of school but I was antsy to get outside so we walked to the college and did our work in one of the student common areas. The change of venue was refreshing.
The kids got inspired from a scrap of newspaper they found to write their own newspapers, "The Brienne Banner" and "The Tougas Times". It was great fun and we met a nice student who got her ears talked off by my always chatty son who was eager to share his newspaper with someone. My children have never had any hang ups about having conversations with adults - of any age. People are people, whether they are 2 or 62.
Friday we participated in a homeschool field trip to a one room school house. Planned by none other than my friend Cori who also organized the glass field trip. She thinks of the best trips!
I found it ironic how similar our basic school structure is to the old fashioned method of schooling, minus the "sit down and be quiet" rules. School in the late 1800's focused on reading, writing (penmanship), spelling and arithmetic. Kind of like our routine.
I'd like to point out that I don't consider our morning lessons the sum of my children's education - hardly. They are learning all the time and I'd say most of their learning takes place outside of those morning hours. But I look at that structured time as helping them develop the skills they need to communicate what they are learning.
But for now school skills can wait. We have winter crafts to do, kid's rooms to de-clutter, Christmas presents to make, and (if it ever snows) snow to play in. Maybe I'll even take the time to cook a few gourmet suppers. Time to re-visit some homemaking skills.
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Jamie on Dec. 9, 2008, 9:05 p.m.
Your pictures turned out great! I'm so impressed with your homeschool methods. I know it's not an easy task .
shelli on Dec. 10, 2008, 12:41 a.m.
This gets me so excited about homeschooling. How fun!
~kristina~ on Dec. 10, 2008, 1:27 a.m.
I absolutely would have loved to visit that schoolhouse as a child! And I'm sure I would these days as well.
I love your candle photo - the concert sounds wonderful.
Thank you for the kind comment on my blog. I'd love you to say a prayer for me when you move your bookmarks around! I agree, handmade gifts do create a connection, even among people that are relative strangers to us. I'm sure I will feel it when I use your soap to wash my hands.
Andie on Dec. 10, 2008, 3:55 p.m.
That is SO cool. Love the pick with the little girl in braids. Reminds me of The house on the prarie, half pint. Yeah for the "tougas times", I bet that is a paper I would LOVE to read. Mwah, a.
Kirsten on Dec. 11, 2008, 6:08 a.m.
Very cool...can I come and sit n on your penmanship class...I have some learning to do!
Pascale on Dec. 13, 2008, 2:32 a.m.
Thank you so much for this post. Over the last week or so, I kept feeling bad about my inability to keep a schedule these days, and your post reminded me that it is not the most important thing. I really appreciate it!
Nicole Gunter on Dec. 14, 2008, 3:27 a.m.
Just wanted to tell you how much I have enjoyed your photos...they capture something I don't know if I can really describe...they just seem to be so full of life, I feel like I'm actually in them! I would LOVE to take pics like yours, but I don't know where to start. Did you take a class? What kind of camera would you suggest as a good starter camera? Vern is picking up on my interest for Christmas, but I don't even know what to tell him!