Sunday, July 24, 2011

July...And The School Year Begins??

I'm 15 weeks pregnant and starting to feel much more human. While some evenings are bad, things are getting better, and our days desperately need some serious structure.

Enter, homeschooling. Yes, we're diving in. Sort of. Roo is only 3.5 and Friendly is not-quite 2 so my plan is: small.

My Aunt (amazingly) gave us the Pre-K/Kindergarten  through 2nd+ grades of Sonlight Curriculum  including most of the read aloud books. She and her girls really enjoyed using it. When Roo was 1 she was getting rid of it and asked me if I wanted it. I've been storing it ever since. I am most excited about this because this stuff will easily carry us through reading/history/science until the girls are 8 or 9 years old. I have an unschooly-take-it-as-it-comes attitude about education and looking through all the materials I realized this stuff can be stretched, cycled through, and enjoyed for several years to come...Especially with some creative supplementation here and there.

This year we will very loosely be following the 5-day reading recommendations. My goal is to focus on lots of reading, and that's it. We'll start the day off with

  • "Morning time" (AKA, watch TV or play and let Mommie drink her tea in peace). Move onto...
  • Chores (by 9a.m.) and I have a new schedule for that which Hubs agrees will be really doable for us (he'll help where I can't quite keep up, though it shouldn't be a big deal if I'm at it every day).  Then...
  • "School Time" which means we'll be coloring or painting "the letter of the day" and practicing the sound it makes (working through the alphabet). We'll also learn the Sonlight Bible verse (which you sing and it has a Verse A-Z over the 36 weeks)...
  • "Table Time" which means they get to play with playdoh or some other sensory thing for as long as they like...I'll potentially be reading out loud from the read aloud book of the week(s). When the weather cools off read aloud time will most likely happen outside at a park where it's safe for them to roam a bit and pick up tid bits here and there. 
  • "Play Time" will happen whenever they get tired (or get messy) with whatever is happening at the table... Basically this will mean: play, I'll play with you but no TV. Ideally, I'd love for them to keep playing around while I get to read out loud...But they'll probably want to do some thing more physical and that won't happen. We'll probably head outside on cool/warm enough days. 
  • Lunch: I'd like for reading (if we feel like it) to happen here, but usually we put on a 20 min DVD for this and "when the shows over it's nap time"...And that's worked well for our nap-time routine.
  • Nap
This is very similar to our daily routine any way, so it's not going to be all that earth shattering...We just have new books to enjoy, and more incentive for me to be a bit more intentional and less willy-nilly about our daily activities.

Also, once a month I'd like to take them on a "field trip" in the afternoons: This fall I'd like to visit:
  • a farm
  • post office 
  • the fair
  • the farmers market (and really let them explore)
  • pumpkin patch (and hay ride)
  • and nature hike
  • I'd love to do a fire house (we live near one and both girls are very curious about it) but I'm not sure how we'd work that out.
 So really our "homeschooling" will be basically: intentional and focused enjoyment of lots of books.  When Roo starts taking a real interest in shapes (she recognizes a few), numbers (some thing she really could care less about right now), and writing we'll add those things in as well...I have some workbooks and she enjoys circling the "B" and tracing the letters...But I only plan to get those out if she specifically requests them...Right now I just want it to be about being more intentional about being together, and learning to love reading things together.

Wish us luck...Tomorrow we dive in! I'm hoping the "schedule" of "school" will give the girls some thing to look forward to and help me accomplish things every day in a bit more of an organized fashion. I can dream, right?

1 comment:

  1. I LOVE THIS! I think this sounds pretty awesome. I have been talking about it for a few years...homeschooling. This year we are taking the leap! Our eldest is 6 yrs old and we had a disappointing first year in Kindergarten public school. We didn't even KNOW that she was bored in school because her [and some of the other kids] picked up the material MUCh faster than some so it slowed the class down [being that there were nearly FORTY children in her class... no. not kidding] So we're doing it and SO excited! Congrats on your new Little One! We have two girls 6 & 4 yrs old [both will be hs'd this year] and we just had a baby boy [last baby] back in on March 31st.

    I have a bloggy too that i will eventually write our journey's in if you want to see


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